Mumbai-Ahmedabad Bullet Train project: State to ‘forcefully’ acquire land, process to complete in two months

Mumbai Mirror | June 2, 2019

Process to complete in two months; no more negotiations with andowners, say sources.

Under pressure to complete the land acquisition process for the Mumbai-Ahmedabad Bullet Train project, the Maharashtra government has decided to take the land “forcefully” in the next two months under the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, also called the Land Acquisition Act. In other words, there will be no more negotiations with land-owning farmers or tribals. The Act allows the government for compulsory acquisition without the wilful consent of owner or occupant in order to benefit society; it is exercised essentially in social and public projects.

The earlier deadline for land acquisition was March 2019. However, the process had to be either stalled in some villages or slowed down because of opposition to the Bullet train. Now with the Narendra Modi government getting the second term at the Centre, the Prime Minister’s pet project has been rebooted. Activists, however, say forceful acquisition of land would be in violation of the agreement with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), which is funding the project.

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