CHENNAI: The Madras High Court on Wednesday advised police to not use force against persons who are staging protests against acquisition of lands for the mega Chennai-Salem Green Corridor project.
When a batch of PIL and writ petitions from several landowners, who apprehended that they will be forcibly dispossessed of their property, came up for hiring before a division bench of Justices T S Sivagnanam and Bhavani Subbaroyan, Additional Solicitor-General G Rajagopalan, representing the Centre, pleaded for time to file the counter.
The bench noted that as per reports appearing in the print and electronic media, police personnel are forcing landowners to part with their lands. The counter filed by the Project Director shows that the project is still in the stage of Sec 3 A (1) of NH Act (declaration of acquisition proceedings). In such a circumstance, the judges wondered as to why police should use force against the agitating farmers.
Advocate-General Vijay Narayan submitted that the question of taking over the land will arise only after a declaration of acquisition proceedings in accordance with sec 3(A) 1. The project is still in the sec 3 A (1) stage and there is no imminent threat of dispossession of lands. The bench then posted the matter for further hearing on August 2.