Land acquisition refers to the process by which union or state govt. in India acquires private land for the purpose of industrialization, development of infrastructural facilities and for the urbanization of the area. It also includes the acquisition by private companies through private negotiations. The acquiring body is liable to pay compensation to the affected landowners and also for the rehabilitation and resettlement of the same
Land acquisition is governed by The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013¬†(LARR), which came into force from 1 January 2014.
India‚Äôs 2013 Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation, and Resettlement Act replaced a colonial-era law with an aim to protect poor farmers. It requires consensus to buy the land, a social impact assessment, rehabilitation for those displaced and compensation of up to four times the market value.
Purpose of land acquisition
1. Acquisition by govt. for :
- Its own use, hold and control
- Public sector undertakings(PSU)
- Public purpose
2. aided acquisition by private companies for:
- Public-private partnership projects
3. Acquisition by private companies for a public purpose.
Prerequisites for land acquisition by Govt.
- Social impact assessment study
- Whenever the appropriate Govt. acquires land for a public purpose, it shall conduct a social impact assessment study in consultation with Panchayat, Municipal Corporation or municipality, as the case may be.
- There shall be a public hearing to ascertain the views of the affected families.
- The report shall be completed within a span of six months at most and shall be published in the affected areas, uploaded on the website of the govt. and made available in the local language to the panchayat, Municipal corporation or municipality, as the case may be, and in the offices of the District. Collector, The Sub- Divisional Magistrate and The Tehsil.
- Environment Impact Assessment report shall also be made, wherever necessary.
- An expert group shall appraise these reports to conclude as to the approval of the acquisition, by comparing the potential benefits from the purpose for which acquisition is made with the adverse social impact and social costs of the project.
- The final decision regarding acquisition rests with the appropriate govt.
2. Food security
- Section 10 of the act provides for prevention of acquisition of multi-cropped and irrigated land.
- Such land can only be acquired as last resorts and after fulfilling certain conditions.
- When it appears to the govt. that land is required or likely to be required for any public purpose, a notification shall be published in :
- The official gazette
- Two daily newspaper( one should be of local language)
Local language to the panchayat, municipality or municipal corporation, as the case may be and in the offices of the District. Collector, The Sub- Divisional Magistrate and The Tehsil
- On the website of the Govt.
- The affected areas
No person is allowed to make any transaction of land specified, after the issuance of notification.
2. A preliminary survey of land
- An officer shall be appointed by the govt. for determining the extent of the land to be acquired
- The officer is entitled to some rights specified in the act for conducting the survey and shall be liable to pay for any damages caused.
3. Hearing of objections
- Any person who is interested in the land specified in the notification may file for objections, in writing to the collector.
- Such objection shall be filed within six months from the date of publication of notification.
- The person objecting shall be heard and a report regarding the same shall be prepared by the collector on which the govt. shall have the final say.
4. Preparation of rehabilitation and resettlement scheme.
- The administrator shall conduct a survey and undertake a census of the affected families for the preparation of a draft rehabilitation and resettlement scheme.
- The administrator shall submit this draft along with a specific report on claims and objections to the Collector, who shall review the same and forward it to the Commissioner with his suggestions for the final approval.
- The approved scheme is made public in the manner aforesaid.
5. Publication of declaration
- When the appropriate govt. is satisfied that land is to be acquired, it shall issue a declaration for the same along with the summary of rehabilitation and resettlement scheme in the manner prescribed in the act.
- Where no such declaration is made within 12 months from the preliminary notification, it shall be considered rescinded.
6. The collector shall cause the land to be marked out and a plan is made.
7. Notices shall be issued by the collector to persons who hold any kind of interest in the land to be acquired stating that the land shall be acquired and the persons interested may claim any compensations.
In case of any dispute arising out of the matters related to land acquisition, the affected person can refer to the
LAND ACQUISITION, REHABILITATION AND RESETTLEMENT AUTHORITY which shall be established by the appropriate govt. under this act.
The authority shall, for the purpose of its functioning under this act, have the same powers as are vested in a civil court under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908.
No civil court (other than high court under article 226 and 227 of the constitution and the supreme court) shall have jurisdiction to entertain any dispute relating to land acquisition in respect of which collector or authority is empowered under this act, and no injunction shall be granted by any court regarding any matter.