The authorities briefed farmers about the new rehabilitation policy and benefits yesterday
Acting swiftly after the Allahabad High Court gave Uttar Pradesh government and agitating farmers 17 days to try and negotiate an out-of-court settlement, Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority (GNIDA) on Wednesday initiated fresh negotiations with farmers and offered them cash incentive, annuity and other sops.
In the meeting GNIDA briefed farmers about the new rehabilitation policy and benefits. Also, besides land compensation, under the new scheme, farmers will get annuity of Rs. 23,000 per acre for 33 years. GNIDA officials said that farmers could also collect one time payment if they desire. The rate would be Rs 2.76 lakh per acre.
No man's land: One of the sites in Noida Extension where housing
construction has stopped since Allahabad High Court's orders on the
land acquisition cases. file pIC
A majority of farmers want to solve the matter out of court since construction work had already been going on at the land taken by the authority and they can no more be brought to use for farming purpose. Also, farmers are cautious in negotiating with builders directly. "There are many builders whose project is hanging in air and they have deputed their agents to get in touch with us. They are trying to persuade us to agree at the price offered by them. Builders have offered Rs 2000 to Rs 3000 per square metre as additional amount," said Ramender Singh, a farmer from Bisrakh village.
Money well spent!
Farmers in villages other than Shahberi have taken land compensation through mutual agreement which they had spent on marrying their children or buying luxury cars and building houses. "We don't have money to return back to the authority. If tomorrow, we are asked to, it won't be possible for us. We do not want to create hindrance in the development of the city. We too want development. But our main concern is that we should get a share in profit too," said another villager, Ramesh Bhati.
Meanwhile, Noida Chairman Balwinder Kumar continued visiting villages to pacify farmers. He visited Sadarpur and other villages and promised to hand over five per cent of developed land and resolve abadi land issues. It is only the Authority which can solve abadi land disputes, so the farmers want the negotiations to be held through the Authority instead of directly with the builders. Farmer leader Naresh Yadav claims that there are more than 800 claims of the 5 % plots pending since 2005 in his area alone. However, the authority had earlier claimed that it has fast-tracked the process of solving abadi land disputes with villagers.
Acquisition of more than 3000 hectares of land, spread across nearly a dozen villages, has been challenged by the petitioners who have alleged that their land was acquired by the state government by invoking "urgency clause" which had deprived them of an opportunity to raise objections as well as to bargain for a better compensation. The fate of thousands of people, who have invested in housing projects in the Noida Extension area, as well as over a dozen real estate developers also hinges on the court verdict.
Nearly 50 villagers of Badalpur filed a writ petition in the Allahabad High Court on Wednesday challenging the notification for acquisition of their land by the Greater Noida Authority and the state government. Badalpur is the native village of UP chief minister Mayawati. The writ petition is likely to come up for hearing before a division bench of the high court on Friday. The petitioners have challenged the acquisition proceedings on the ground that the entire acquisition proceeding is a one-sided exercise of power by the authority and the UP government.