You are here: Home » PTI Stories » National » News
Business Standard

Bullet train project: JICA team meets Gujarat farmers opposed to land acquisition

Press Trust of India  |  Ahmedabad 

A team of (JICA), which is funding the Mumbai-bullet train venture, on Saturday concluded its two-day meeting with farmers and villagers opposed to land acquisition for the project.

The Japanese government's funding agency is providing a soft loan to for the first high speed train project in the country which is expected to cost Rs 1.08 lakh crore.

The three-member team led by JICA's met hundreds of farmers, whose lands will have to be acquired for the project, from south districts.

The team heard the farmers' grievances and legal issues over two days.

JICA officials were not available for comment.

Farmers' leaders said they apprised the team with the ground reality of the land acquisition process and how it "flouts" JICA's guidelines.

Several farmers have challenged the state government's land acquisition process in the High Court. They claim the process is not in accordance with the law.

Farmers had earlier written to JICA, requesting its officials to visit the affected villages to understand the ground reality.

On Friday, around 400 project-affected persons gathered at Amadpore in district where they made their representations before the JICA team, said of Gujarat Khedut Samaj, a farmers' outfit.

"The second meeting was held at Kathor village in district where more than 150 houses will have to be razed to pave the way for the bullet train. JICA met 200 farmers there," he said.

The team also met representatives of Adivasi Ekta Parishad from

The representatives told the JICA team how rules were being "flouted" for acquiring forest land for the project, Patel said.

Representatives from NGOs working for farmers and met the team on Saturday.

"Based on our representation, the JICA team will prepare a report on environmental and social aspects of land acquisition, issues of compensation, rehabilitation and resettlement and human rights, for consideration by higher authorities," Patel said.

"Villagers who met the JICA team said the government was not taking into account the impact land acquisition will have on their social life," said Anand Yagnik, who is representing farmers in the high court.

Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti, an NGO working for protection, highlighted the "violations" by authorities for land acquisition in its representation.

"As you (JICA) know, such projects are a matter of concern not only for the project-affected people, but all global citizens," it said in its submission.

"We must uphold the universal human rights and principles and laws related to environmental protection and social justice," it added.

The ambitious bullet train project was launched by and his Japanese counterpart in September last year.

The bullet train will run at a speed of 320-350 kmph and have 12 stations across its 500-km stretch between and

Around 1,400 hectares of land will have to be acquired in Gujarat and for the project. Of that 1,120 hectares is privately owned.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sat, December 08 2018. 21:35 IST