DELHI: Government today came up with draft rules to implement the Land Acquisition Act with a focus on consent and social impact assessment to ensure that the rights of the farmers are protected when the land is acquired.
The draft rules have been put out in public domain to invite comments from all stakeholders. Comments should be submitted to the Rural Development Ministry in 45 days.
According to the rules, all social impact assessment documents and consent proceedings are made publicly available and all requests for information are fulfilled within seven days.
They say that consent should be taken in the pre- notification period, along with the social impact assessment study to be carried out under the Act.
"The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013" stipulates mandatory consent of at least 70 per cent for acquiring land for Public Private Partnership (PPP) projects and 80 per cent for acquiring land for private companies.The draft rules say that for large projects where acquisition is spread across multiple locations, consent must be sought in all the affected areas at the same time.
"For Public Private Partnership projects and projects by a private company in Schedule V areas, Gram Sabha consent must be sought prior to land owners consent," they underline.
They say that the appropriate government must take steps to resolve outstanding issues related to land rights, land titling and land records in the affected areas, so that all land owners can be correctly identified before initiating consent procedures.
In case land owners or gram sabhas seek further information and clarifications on the terms and conditions of compensation and rehabilitation and resettlement after the public hearings, these must be immediately addressed and the required information provided within seven days by the designated district officials, the draft rules says.