Farmers thank CM for land compensation, clearing airport development hurdle
The farmers were elated and eager to convey their appreciation to the CM personally, as Yogi Adityanath allowed them to claim compensation and rehabilitation benefits for government land they had been using for the past 45 years.
GREATER NOIDA Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath, who spent a day in Greater Noida to attend the Moto GP Bharat event on Sunday, also met with a delegation of 21 farmers who wished to express their gratitude for a decision that “transformed their lives”. CM Yogi arrived at Greater Noida’s Gautam Buddha University at 11 am, engaged with CEOs of top global companies and garment businessmen, attended the Moto GP event at the Buddha International Circuit, and, notably, met with the farmers who had sought his time.
The farmers were elated and eager to convey their appreciation to the CM personally, as Yogi Adityanath allowed them to claim compensation and rehabilitation benefits for government land they had been using for the past 45 years. This land had been acquired for the construction of the Noida International Greenfield Airport at Jewar, and officials had previously denied these farmers any compensation, citing the land’s government ownership.
However, these farmers staged protests and obstructed the construction of the airport’s boundary wall, impeding the airport’s development, which is scheduled to become operational by the end of 2024, according to officials from Noida International Airport Limited (NIAL). A 2km-long section of the airport boundary wall remained unfinished due to the farmers’ agitation, causing safety and security concerns on the site.
On August 1, 2023, the U.P. cabinet passed a policy decision that rendered all farmers eligible for compensation for government land categorized as “Shor” (government land intended for natural water bodies and forests, etc.) when acquired for public projects. This decision was a boon for the farmers, and Jewar MLA Dhirendra Singh had insisted on their compensation. CM Yogi accepted the demand as it affected hundreds of farmers who collectively owned 14 hectares of land obstructing the airport project.
“Our government is committed to the welfare of farmers and the needy; hence, we made this decision in their favor,” said CM Yogi during his meeting with the farmers held at Gautam Buddha University’s guesthouse at around 1 pm. Farmers from Ranhera, Veerampur, Mudrah, and others expressed their gratitude to the CM during the meeting.
“We had only nine bighas of land, which was our primary source of income for sustaining our families. However, when this land was acquired for the airport, and we were denied compensation, we lived in fear, devoid of income and alternative livelihoods. Tehsil officials rejected our compensation claims, citing government ownership of the land. We are immensely grateful to U.P. CM for his courageous decision, which has brought us happiness,” said Meghraj Jatav after meeting CM Adityanath.
NIAL and the Gautam Budh Nagar administration promptly initiated the distribution of compensation and other benefits to all farmers who had been using the “Shor” land, thereby clearing the path for the construction of the boundary wall.
“I had no means to fund my daughters’ weddings before the U.P. government allowed us compensation, despite our 45 years of utilisation of government land, which was eventually acquired for the airport,” said Ramprasad, another farmer.
Jewar MLA Dhirendra Singh, present at the meeting, emphasised, “The decision by the U.P. government, aimed at benefitting airport farmers, will also extend its benefits to other farmers whose land is acquired for government projects across the state. This decision was a much-needed step to assist needy farmers who were erroneously granted possession of government land 45 years ago.”