NEW DELHI: Amid a controversy over the government's decision to make significant amendments in the Land Acquisition Act, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said changes in the law were required to ensure faster processing without compromising on compensation or relief and rehabilitation measures for farmers.
Hours after the Union Cabinet chaired by him took the decision to take an ordinance route to amend the legislation enacted during the previous UPA government, Modi said the proposed amendments meet the twin objectives of farmers' welfare, along with expeditiously meeting strategic and developmental needs of the country.
"Certain amendments have been made in the Act to further strengthen the provisions to protect the interests of the 'affected families'.
"Important aspect of amendment is to make developmental & security related works faster without compromising benefits/compensation to farmers," the Prime Minister tweeted.
He said the present changes will allow a fast track process for defence and defence production, rural infrastructure including electrification, housing for poor including affordable housing, industrial corridors and infrastructure projects including projects taken up in PPP mode where ownership of the land continues to be vested with the government.
"Pro-farmer step: Excluded Acts brought under RFCTLARR Act for Compensation and R&R.
"Pro-development: Faster processing without compromising on compensation or R&R measures to farmers," Modi tweeted.
The Prime Minister also said "several suggestions" had come up during the Centre's interactions with state Revenue Ministers and key implementing Ministries.
"States, Ministries and stakeholders had been reporting many difficulties in the implementation of this Act," he said.
Government recommended promulgation of an ordinance making significant changes in the Act including removal of consent clause for acquiring land for five areas of industrial corridors, PPP projects, rural infrastructure, affordable housing and defence.