The presence of ex-Depalpur member of legislative assembly (MLA) Manoj Patel bolstered the morale of affected farmers as they remained unrelenting in their opposition to land acquisition during Monday’s hearing on a residential scheme proposed by MP Housing Board (MPHB) at Palakhedi.
Pointing out that the chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan had announced that the land would not be acquired against the farmers’ wishes, Patel reportedly said the officials would have to suffer the consequences if they continued with the acquisition in spite of opposition from tillers.
The tillers also slammed the MPHB for adopting dilatory tactics in response to an Right to Information (RTI) application seeking documents pertaining to the project. “We sought certified copies of the gazette notification, governmental orders and other clearances after we came to know that there were some shortcomings in the paperwork. But they (MPHB) have yet to provide us with the documents,” said Rahul.
He said the MPHB had promised to furnish the documents in three days during the last hearing on Monday. “But now they’re saying it will take some more time as nearly 1,000 papers have to be photocopied,” he added.
Seventy-three farmers were served notices for the project proposed on 134 hectares. The farmers have, however, been strongly opposed to the scheme since it was first announced on grounds that large tracts of village land have already been taken for other projects.
“Indore Development Authority has already acquired the land at Palakhedi for Scheme No 151 and 169,” said a farmer.