October 24, 2008

Land at Singur cannot be returned to farmers: CPI(M)

23 October, 2008 12:49:27
The CPI(M), the leader of West Bengal's ruling Left Front, on Thursday said there was no law under which the land acquired for the Tata Motors' car project could be returned to farmers as demanded by opposition Trinamool Congress. "Her (Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee's) demand is unrealistic and not supported by any provision of law," CPI(M) state secretary Biman Basu told a press conference in Kolkata.
"Where is the law under which acquired land can be returned? She should have raised the issue in Lok Sabha instead of making the demand outside parliament. The Land Acquisition Act, 1894, has no provision for return of land," he said. The Left Front government has already announced that other industries would be set up at the land meant for the Tatas project after the withdrawal of the industrial house from the small car project at Singur.
Basu also questioned Governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi's attempt to broker a solution at Singur."How can a Governor be involved in an agreement unless the Centre authorises him to do so?" Basu said referring to the agreement reached at Raj Bhavan between West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and Trinamool Congress on Septemeber 7. "In fact, no agreement was signed at Raj Bhavan on the Singur issue. It was only a declaration," Basu who is the Left Front chairman, said.
The Trinamool Congress chief, however, stuck to her demand that the land acquired at Singur for the Tata Motors plant could be used for setting up new industrial units only after unwilling landowners got back their 400 acre out of the 1000 acquired by the state government for the project.

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