Farmers want land after SEZ scrapped
Farmers, whose land was acquired in 2006 for the now-shelved RIL-HSIIDC Special Economic Zone (SEZ), have asked the state government to return their land or brace for a confrontation. Sanjeev K Ahuja reports.gurgaon Updated: Dec 29, 2012 01:20 IST
Farmers, whose land was acquired in 2006 for the now-shelved RIL-HSIIDC Special Economic Zone (SEZ), have asked the state government to return their land or brace for a confrontation.
The affected farmers, under the banner of the Azad Hind Kisan Mahasangh, have been staging a dharna at Garoli village.
As deliberations between the Haryana government and Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) to return 1,383 acres of land near completion, farmers fear the plots may be sold to private developers after getting possession from RIL.
Farmers say the land should be returned to them as no industrial activity has been undertaken since the land acquisition in 2006.
This SEZ was to be set up through a special purpose vehicle - Reliance Haryana SEZ Ltd - created after a collaboration between Reliance Ventures, a wholly owned subsidiary of RIL, and HSIIDC. RIL had 90% stake in the project while HSIIDC held a 10% sweat equity in the project.
Chowdhary Surajmal, convenor of the Azad Hind Kisan Mahasangh, said, "The farmers feel cheated at the hands of the government. They want to reclaim their land."
"The affected farmers hail from Garoli Kalan, Khurd, Narsingpur, Harsaroo and Khandsa villages. The Haryana government had acquired the land in 2006 at the rate of R12-20 lakh per acre where the current market rate is around Rs 10-12 crore. We will launch an agitation and also approach the apex court to reclaim our land. We are staging a dharna in Garoli village," added Surajmal.
Showcased as a key achievement of the Congress government in the state, the RIL SEZ in Gurgaon, along with its sister project in Jhajjar, was to bring in an investment of around Rs 25,000 crore through RIL and another Rs 15,000 crore through companies which were to populate the SEZ.
Chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda had then claimed that the project would create jobs for five lakh persons in the state.