New Delhi: Treading cautiously over the issue of land acquisition after the Greater Noida incident, the Central government is mulling over constituting a Land Acquisition Tribunal in every state that would adjudicate over all the matters related to land acquisition.

The formulation of Tribunal would be one of the components of the proposed amendments in the Land Acquisition Act, an amendment bill which would be tabled in the Parliament in the upcoming monsoon session.

Government has fast tracked the process of drafting the Bill. Officials of the PMO, Finance Ministry, Rural Development Ministry, Law Ministry and other ministries are involved in the process. The final draft would incorporate the recommendations of the Ashok Chawla committee on allocation of natural resources.

Apart from amending the Land Acquisition Act-1894, the government is also mulling to amend Stamp Act-1899, Registration Act-1908 and Limitation Act-1963 so as to insulate land acquisition from any controversy in future.

As per sources, the biggest contentious issue in drafting the Bill is about the amount of compensation to farmers. The officials have started arriving at a conclusion that the compensation must be calculated as per the present and direct loss to the farmers.

However, the market value of the land will have to be derived for the purpose. The Centre is yet to come out with a formula for assessing market value of lands.

The proposed amended Bill at present only states that farmers should be compensated as per the market value of land.
The Ashok Chawla-led committee will play a key role in deriving a formula for compensating farmers.

According to sources, the new Bill would have broader view on the issue that would not only take care of the benefits of the land owners, but will also look into benefits of the tenants.

The Bill would clearly mention that if acquisition affects employment opportunities of the tenants, the agency, company or government whoever is acquiring the land would provide for an alternate employment opportunity of the tenants.

JPN/Bureau