The price advisory committee, headed by Deputy Commissioner Sasikanth Senthil S., on Monday recommended ₹60 lakh per acre as the price for acquiring land in Kuthehoor, Permude, Mooluru, Tenka Yekkar and Kandavara villages for the fourth phase expansion of Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd. (MRPL).
The committee recommended the price following three meetings Mr. Senthil had with owners of lands in five villages, officials from MRPL, Revenue Department and the Special Land Acquisition Officer. In a statement on Monday, Mr. Senthil said farmers who agree for the rate can take the amount. For those who do not agree, a general award of compensation will be passed by the Karnataka Industrial Area Development Board as per the Land Acquisition Act, 1894.
In January 2017, the State government issued the preliminary notification for acquiring 1,050 acres of land in five villages. After conducting a public hearing and carrying out a final survey, the government issued the final notification for acquisition of 962 acres of land of which 824 acres were private land.
Two petitions were filed before the High Court of Karnataka questioning issuance of final notification. Following representation by the State government, the HC allowed the Deputy Commissioner to go ahead with the process of fixation of price.
The first meeting of the advisory committee was on September 20, followed by another on September 29. The third meeting was held on Monday. Mr. Senthil told The Hindu that land losers were first offered ₹40 lakh per acre which was further revised to ₹50 lakh. Finally, the committee decided to offer ₹60 lakh. In addition to the price, the land loser will get employment and also a rehabilitation package. The price offered was as per the formula laid down in the the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013.
On Monday, land owners, under the aegis of Samyukta Nagarika Hitarakshana Samiti, who attended the meeting, refused to agree to the price offered by the committee. Samiti president Rohan Fernandes said the price offered was too less and not as per the 2013 Act. He and other members of the samiti walked out of the meeting.
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