LUCKNOW: After successful experiment of acquiring land through mutual agreement for its ambitious Lucknow-Agra expressway project, the Akhilesh Yadav government has formalised a similar policy for land acquisition to fulfil housing needs.
The state housing and urban planning department has issued a government order empowering development authorities (DAs) and UP Housing and Development Board (UPHDB) to purchase land directly from farmers.
Earlier, land was acquired by the revenue department through a process in which farmers did not have much say. District administration would simply issue notifications under various sections of land acquisition act, invite objections, fix a price and give away fixed compensation. The acquired land was subsequently handed over to the development authorities and the housing board for its housing projects. The process, however, has been inviting the ire of farmers who resorted to protests, often delaying the actual implementation of a project.
Under the new provisions, however, a DA and housing board would work like any private builder, acquiring land through mutual consent with the farmer/land owner. The GO, issued by the department on March 21, said a farmer/land owner in urban areas may be given twice the DM circle rate or the market price, whichever is higher. The compensation will rise up to four times in case of rural areas.
The circle rate/market rate will be the same as on the day an agreement draft is signed between the buyer and seller. This will subsequently be inspected by a committee within 15 days. The department further said that price of the crop, trees and other properties may also be paid to the land owner.
The process, significantly, is similar to the one the state government adopted to acquire land for 302-km Lucknow-Agra expressway project. The eight-lane green-field expressway, which is scheduled to be completed by October later this year, saw acquisition of around 3,000 hectares of fertile, multi-cropped land without any protest.
Housing and urban planning principal secretary Sadakant said the land bank has been shrinking alarmingly which has been a cause of concern. “The new provision aims to redress that problem,” he said. Housing department sources said while private builders managed to get land, DAs and housing board could not, mainly because of the earlier provision.
Credits ET Realty