Framers join hands to prevent landlessness by the road PM is inaugurating



As Prime Minister Modi is scheduled to formally inaugurate the Semi Ring Road on Friday, affected farmers along with several RTI activists sat on a dharna in Srinagar’s press enclave on Thursday to press for their demands which includes 4 times more compensation than the market value of land plus rehabilitation.

The RTI spokesman said that an alternate road link is coming up connecting Pampore highway with Ganderbal via Khanda , Wathoora Chadoora , Budgam , Daharmuna , Narbal, Sumbal , Ganderbal. This Semi Ring road project which is around 60 KM long starts from Gallandar Pampore and ends at Manigam  in Ganderbal. Lot of agriculture land will be acquired in Pulwama , Budgam , some parts of Srinagar , Baramulla, Bandipora and Ganderbal districts. PM Modi who is scheduled to visit Srinagar on May 19th will be laying the foundation stone for this mega highway

Farmers along with RTI activists sitting on Darna in Press Enclave Srinagar

In the 1st phase,  Gallandar to Narbal project will be taken up and then in the 2nd phase, Manigam Ganderbal road link will be executed. Most of the affected district will be Budgam as around 4500 kanals of land will be acquired very soon. In Ganderbal 2341 Kanals of land will be acquired. The National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) will be executing this project and the said authority has been already deposited the required funds into the accounts of respective Deputy Commissioners (DCs). The process of payment of land compensation has already started. This “prestigious project” is monitored by Prime Minister’s Office (PMO). Before authorities take up this project the following suggestions need to be taken into consideration by J&K Government and officials of NHAI.

The National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) pays adequate compensation to the farmers / other persons whose land and property is acquired for construction of highways in other states of India. 4 times in Rural areas, 2 times in Urban areas, but not in J&K as Central Land Acquisition Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act is not applicable in our state. Our land is being forcibly “occupied” by NHAI from J&K Govt as NHAI is not ready for Private Negotiation which is a provision in J&K Land Acquisition Act

As per the provisions of new Land Acquisition Rehabilitation & Resettlement Act (LARR) enacted by Congress lead UPA Government in 2013, land and property owners get 4 times more compensation than the market value of land/ property in rural areas and 2 times in urban areas, but they said law is not applicable in J&K.

“PM Modi is laying the foundation stone for this project on May 19th, 2018, but we are not satisfied with the kind of process being evolved in the Land Acquisition. Farmers and landowners are paid much less compensation as compared to what is paid by NHAI in other states “ said G A Paul President Semi Ring Road Land Owners Welfare Association

“We took up this matter with Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, Revenue and Works Minister plus several Ministers, MoS ’s, MLAs and MLCs. The Government should at any cost issue an ordinance for a new version of land acquisition act in J&K so that affected people in J&K get adequate compensation during acquisition process” said Muzaffar Hussain Mir an aggrieved landowner from Khanda

“Kashmir valley has lost its limited agriculture land to residential colonies, shopping complexes,  railways and highways. Within 15 to 20 years 80 to 90 % of the villagers will be landless and on the other hand, State Government is doing sheer injustice with the people of Jammu and Kashmir by paying them peanuts during land acquisition process “said Dr Raja Muzaffar Founder J&K RTI Movement

Compensation to Orchardists:  As on date the compensation paid to apple, pear and plum orchardists is between Rs 15 to 16 / Kg. This rate has been fixed way back in 1995 with 2 % increase after every 2 years. Right now even a B class apple per kg fetches Rs 50 to 60 / Kg in the market, but the farmers are paid mere Rs 16 which is a complete injustice. The matter has been brought into the notice of Minister for Horticulture Syed Basharat Bukhari, Secretary Horticulture and Director Horticulture Kashmir who all had given assurance to revise the rates but from last 1 year, this process has not been completed.

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