‘Indira Sagar dam oustees entitled to get land too’ | bhopal | Hindustan Times
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‘Indira Sagar dam oustees entitled to get land too’

Not only the oustees of the Omkareshwar dam in the Narmada valley but oustees of the Indira Sagar dam are also entitled to land for land with a minimum of two hectare of land, through judgment of the apex court dated July 24, 2012, said Narmada Bachao Andolan ( NBA) leader Alok Agrawal in a press statement here on Tuesday.

bhopal Updated: Aug 22, 2012 15:04 IST
HT Correspondent

Not only the oustees of the Omkareshwar dam in the Narmada valley but oustees of the Indira Sagar dam are also entitled to land for land with a minimum of two hectare of land, through judgment of the apex court dated July 24, 2012, said Narmada Bachao Andolan ( NBA) leader Alok Agrawal in a press statement here on Tuesday.

In the special leave petition (SLP) filed by the NBA in the Supreme Court, the state government and the Narmada Hydro- electric Development Corporation (NHDC) Limited (the company which has built the Indira Sagar dam) accepted that the land for land judgment of the apex court dated May 11, 2011 passed for the oustees of the Omkareshwar dam would also apply equally to the oustees of the Indira Sagar dam. Thus the judgment of the apex court that it is the obligation of the state government to allot land to the oustees, as per the mandatory provisions of the R&R Policy, will also apply to the Indira Sagar dam oustees.

In this respect, on September 15, the NBA will organise a land rights’ conference at Khandwa, in which further steps and measures for implementation of the land rights for the dam oustees would be decided. This conference would be attended by the oustees of the Indira Sagar, Omkareshwar, Maheshwar, Maan and Upper Beda dams, Agrawal said.

In 2006, the Narmada Bachao Andolan had filed an SLP in the apex court challenging the order of the Madhya Pradesh High Court dated September 8, 2006, which had stated that land for land with a minimum of two hectare of land was required to be allotted to the oustees only as far as possible, as per amended R&R Policy.

However, in the case of the Omkareshwar dam oustees, which also travelled to the Supreme Court, the apex court passed a judgment on May 11, 2011 interpreting ‘as far as possible’. The apex court held that the state and the project authorities have to ensure strict compliance with the provisions of the R&R Policy, by either allotting land for land with a minimum of two hectare of land to the oustees, or financially assisting the oustees to purchase two hectare of land themselves.

The judgment of the apex court also made it clear that it was the constitutional obligation of the state government and the project authorities and the state will have to ensure that the quality of the land had to be equal to or better than the land originally held by the oustees.

The court also stated that the oustees who want land could approach the Grievance Redressal Authority (GRA) in this matter.

During the hearing on July 24, the state government and the NHDC Limited accepted that the land for land judgment of the apex court dated May 11, 2011 passed for the oustees of the Omkareshwar dam would also apply equally to the oustees of the Indira Sagar dam, as noted by the Apex Court in its Order.

Thus the state government and the project authorities will have to allot land for land with a minimum of two hectare of irrigated and fertile land to the Indira Sagar dam oustees, Agarwal said.