The much-touted Land Acquisition Bill was taken up in the Lok Sabha today, with UPA ally Samajwadi Party expressing criticism, along with opposition parties, over various provisions of the legislation.
Parties including SP, BJP, BSP, CPI(M) and TMC voiced concern over aspects like adequate remuneration to farmers and the right of farmers to appeal in the bill which seeks to provide 'fair and just compensation' to land owners.
SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav questioned the need for acquiring land of farmers, contending that the bill would 'ruin' and 'devastate' farmers.
Participating in the debate on the 'Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill, 2012', he asked, 'What is there for farmers except land?'
Yadav, whose party supports UPA government from outside, asked why arable and fertile land is being 'targeted' for acquisition.
'When farmers sell land, they (most of the times) do not get remunerative price,' he said, adding that land should not be acquired unless there is requirement, otherwise it would become unproductive.
Initiating the debate, BJP President Rajnath Singh said there are lot of grey areas in the bill.
Despite the proposed bill, there are apprehensions that forcible land acquisition would continue, he added.
Singh said there should be provision for leasing land in the bill. 'Lease can happen only when there is consent from the land owner,' he added.
According to him, poor people have been ignored in the bill.
'This is a comparatively better bill. But after studying it in full, I feel the bill is far far away from its objective... This bill is not meeting the objectives it is meant for,' he said.