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Land of wheat, paddy in Mohali turning into orchards to get better compensation

Acquisition for GMADA projects: Farmers expect planting fruit saplings before GMADA acquires land for development may bring additional windfall, besides compensation for their land, as it happened in 2011.

punjab Updated: Jan 10, 2018 12:27 IST
Shub Karman Dhaliwal
Shub Karman Dhaliwal
Hindustan Times, Mohali
Land of wheat,paddy,Mohali
Daya Singh, a farmer at Bakarpur village in Aerocity, in his guava orchard in Mohali on Monday. (Keshav Singh/HT)

From growing traditional crops such as paddy and wheat, farmers in the villages around the periphery of the Chandigarh International Airport have gone in to an overdrive to turn their land into orchards. Reason: A word has spread around that Greater Mohali Area Development Authority ( GMADA) would give additional compensation for the land having orchards.

An orchard is an enclosed land planted with fruit trees.

Farmers are assuming that GMADA officials are going to abide by the precedent of paying extra compensation to the those having orchards.

GMADA is to acquire about 4,500 acres of land in the periphery of the airport to develop the same as into an industrial, commercial and residential hub. “Ever since the announcement made by the officials for acquiring the villages’ lands for development, the villagers have gone into an overdrive to turn their land into orchards”, said Daya Singh, a local farmer, who himself has brought one acre of his land at Bakarpur village under guava orchard.

During a visit to Badi, Matran, Bakarpur , Badi, Sau, Kurdi, Kishanpur, Paton, Chau Majra, Matran, Rurka, Safipur, the HT team came to know the farmers have engaged contractors to plant fruit trees in their land.

Private contractors planting fruit saplings

Vijaypal Singh, who hails from Kanpur, and works for a private company in Banur that deals in selling fruit plant saplings said, “I have planted guava saplings in almost all the villages falling under the immediate periphery of International Airport. In recent days, I have planted fruits in about 10 acre in Matran village, more than five acres in Bakarpur and Badi villages.”

“Besides me other private contractors across the villages are doing the same work for farmers. The private companies eyeing a brisk business have increased the supply of saplings,” said Vijaypal.

The farmers are procuring each guava sapling for Rs 50 and are planting nearly 2,500- 3,000 plants in five acres of land.

Farmers are assuming that GMADA officials are going to abide by the precedent of paying extra compensation to the those having orchards. When the land was acquired in 2011 for Aerocity and IT City, farmers with orchards were given additional compensation.

Gurtej Singh, a farmer of Badi village, said, “When the land was acquired for IT City and Aerocity in 2011, GMADA officials had given extra money to owners of the land that had orchards. Hoping the same would happen this time as the farmers in anticipation have planted fruit trees in more than 25 acres of land.”

Also read | Mohali farmers up in arms against land pooling

First Published: Jan 09, 2018 13:13 IST