New land acquisition bill fails to cheer up businesses

New land acquisition bill fails to cheer up businesses
The initial euphoria over the proposed Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Bill has started paving way for the 'so what' feeling among business leaders who have worried about cost of land acquisition going up by as much as 150 per cent, making large projects like real estate townships and airports costlier.

Land costs, in typical projects, account for just 20-30 per cent of total cost of project, but in case of large projects such as roads, realty, these costs are significant and such a rise of 150 per cent could make the entire project unfeasible.

Arun Nanda, director of Mahindra & Mahindra, said that apart from high land acquiring cost, the bill requires 80 per cent land owners' consent which itself is a big task considering the availability of most of them remains in dark clouds.

If the project is developed under public-private partnership (PPP), 70 per cent consent from landowners is required while government projects do not require land owners' consent.

Leaders of businesses said that poor farmers may continue to lose money as compensation for their land is usually grabbed by middle-men and land aggregators, who take power of attorney from the land owners.

Read more about: land bill
Story first published: Saturday, December 15, 2012, 10:30 [IST]
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