One can’t be satisfied by the sudden urgency in Centre’s move to amend the Land Acquisition Act after the violent clashes between farmers and police in a Greater Noida village erupted. The Rural Development Ministry might have pulled up its socks after receiving instructions from the Prime Minister, but it fails to answer why was the government inactive on its amendment policy till now, was it waiting for the death of farmers and policemen in Graeter Noida incident? It is strange the Rural Development Minster stating that the Cabinet nod over the draft of amendments in Land Acquisition Act will be sought by the second week of June and finally be tabled in the Parliament in the monsoon session. It’s pertinent why was it not done last year?  Was it because of Mamata Banerjee who was not ready for any amendment in the Act till the West Bengal Assembly elections come to an end? Does the Central government guarantee it will not succumb to any intervention in future? Whatever may be the case, it is not something which can be applauded at this stage as it’s still not clear whether the proposed amendments will benefit the farmers. Because of the fact that it has been observed in the past interest of farmers has always been ignored in all cases of land acquisition. In many cases, despite giving less than adequate compensation to farmers, it’s being conveyed as if the government has done a favour to them.

The attitude of almost all the state governments on the issue is similar. Their policy seems to be protecting the interests of industrialists and builders. The fact that they are selling the land at premium after acquiring them at a nominal rate from farmers is appalling. Are the state governments left with no other option than farmer’s land to generate revenue? State governments contend that the issue spiralled into a gigantic problem due to lack of a standard law of land acquisition. But is there any law which stops them from giving adequate compensation to the farmers? The fact that all political parties are involved in fleecing farmers is a matter of serious concern. Not a single political party which presently shows involvement in theatrics at Greater Noida can claim to have done anything to ensure adequate compensation to farmers earlier. It’s true that land is required by the government to enhance the process of industrialization, but it does not allow the second grade treatment being meted out to farmers. Unfortunately it has been an appropriated policy since long where acquiring farm land is always associated with minimum compensation to farmers. In such circumstances, it is understood that the delay in amending the Land Acquisition Act is a deliberate ploy.