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Jewar farmers demand Rs 5k per sqm for selling land for Greater Noida airport

The UP government, in order to expedite the land acquisition for the airport, has decided to directly purchase land from farmers instead of acquiring it by invoking the Land Acquisition Act, 2013.

india Updated: Apr 25, 2018 08:26 IST
Vinod Rajput
Vinod Rajput
Hindustan Times, Greater Noida
Jewar,Greater Noida Airport,Farmland
An area of 5,000 hectares is required for the Jewar airport. Land from 39 villages will be acquired for this purpose.(HT File Photo)

The acquisition of agricultural land for the upcoming airport at Jewar in Greater Noida will not be an easy task for the Uttar Pradesh government, unless landowners are offered handsome compensation.

The UP government, in order to expedite the land acquisition for the airport, has decided to directly purchase land from farmers instead of acquiring it by invoking the Land Acquisition Act, 2013.

The Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority (YEIDA), the nodal agency for the airport project, and the Gautam Budh Nagar district administration — that will acquire the land on behalf of the state government — has offered farmers the existing market rate of Rs 1,895 per square metre to buy land for the project.

The Union civil aviation ministry on Monday directed YEIDA to complete formalities reagrding acquisition of land at the earliest so that the development work can be started by October this year.

The district administration has already started the process of acquiring land. In the first phase it will acquire 1,400 hectares land from eight villages of Runhera, Kishorepur, Mukim Sivara, Dayanatpur, Rohi, Parohi, Ramner and Banwariwaas.

A total of 5,000 hectares is required for the Jewar airport project and land from 39 villages will be acquired for this purpose.

Officials of the district administration, however, said that they are likely to face problems in dealing directly with farmers as after the new airport was announced, prices of land in the neighbouring villages has increased. Farmers of the area, officals said, now want more compensation.

“We are more than happy to give our land for the airport project as it will bring development and prosperity in this region. But we demand a rate of Rs 5,000 per square metre, which is applicable in Noida . We are not happy with the proposed Rs 1,895 per square metre rate at all,” said Thakur Daryav Singh, whose family owns 45 bigha land earmarked for the airport project in Ruhi village.

The market rate for one bigha (843 square metre) of agricultural land was Rs 4-5 lakh in villages before the airport project was approved by the Centre. But now businessman and property agents reportedly are offering a rate of Rs 20-25 lakh per bigha to farmers as they feel the government will offer a higher rate.

“Why farmers would give their land for Rs 15 lakh per bigha when property agents are offering a rate of Rs 20-25 lakh for one bigha. The government should increase the rate if they want smooth acquisition and do not want to face agitation,” said Singh, whose family is likely to make at least Rs 6.7 crore at the government rate of Rs 1895 per square metre.

However, if the government offers Rs 5,000 per square metre, then this family will get around Rs 19 crore.

The UP government, officials said, is likely to increase the land rate because it wants to finish the acquisition process at the earliest.

“We have studied the social impact assessment survey (SIA) report prepared by the Gautam Budh University. Now we are likely to issue a public notice giving villagers a week’s time for a public hearing at the villages next month. If villagers want higher rates then we will include their demands, including higher compensation in SIA and send it to the state government before starting acquisition,” said Rakesh Chand Sharma, additional district magistrate, Gautam Budh Nagar.

The administration will organise public hearing in five villages, from where more than 20 per cent farmer land will be acquired for the airport project.

According to estimates, 95 per cent farmers of the area own 5-15 bigha land. And the remaining five per cent own 15-100 bigha of land in these 39 villages. Farmers are willing to part with their land for the airport because they do not find agriculture a profitable business. They do not want to protest against land acquisition because they hope that the airport project will change their lives for better.

“Farmers want to sell their lands without protesting because with the money they get, they can buy more property at cheaper rates in other areas in the state and start new businesses,” said Prakash Fauji, a farmer leader of Choroli village.

First Published: Apr 25, 2018 08:26 IST