Anand Sharma opposes report on land acquisition


New Delhi : Terming the parliamentary panel’s report that seeks to bar the government from acquiring land for industrial use as “unacceptable”, Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma Friday said he would take the issue to the cabinet and oppose the bill.

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“Industry leaders have met me. This report is unacceptable not only to the industry but to my ministry also,” Sharma told reporters.

A parliamentary panel in a report submitted in the Lok Sabha Thursday suggested radical changes in the Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill, 2011.

The report suggests that the government should acquire land only for public purpose — infrastructure and social projects like roads, rail, irrigation and power.

The report seeks to bar the government from acquiring land for industrial use, including public-private-partnership projects.

Sharma said the parliamentary panel’s recommendations were regressive, which would dampen investor sentiment and negatively impact manufacturing activities.

“We will definitely be in favour of a legislation, which promotes growth which keeps principle of equity in mind when it comes to adequate compensation. But that should not be taken to an extreme where the growth and industrialisation is brought to a halt or sharply slowed down,” said Sharma, who is also the minister for textiles.

India Inc has opposed the bill saying it would hamper growth.

“This will make the land acquisition more complex and difficult leading to slower growth in industry and therefore, the economy,” said Adi Godrej, president of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).