Maharashtra state government is making the move to increase the compensation rate for land acquisition. Land acquired for public infrastructure projects in rural areas will now get an increased compensation four times the Ready Reckoner rate. As of now, project-affected persons get 2-3 times the RR rate if the state acquires their land.
The state cabinet on Wednesday cleared the proposal to amend the Land Acquistion Act 2013, which will subsume four different Acts once it is cleared by the House. The four Acts—Maharashtra National Highway Act 1955, Maharashtra Industrial Development Act 1961, Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority Act 1976, and Maharashtra Regional and Town Planning Act 1966—empowered government agencies to acquire land in different ways. When enforced, the amended Land Acquistion Act will bring parity in the acquisition rates.
As a result of the cabinet decision, the price of land acquisition under these four state legislations will also be given to the rural landlord at four times the market price. Officials said this will ensure that land is accquired easily and the project takes off smoothly. “Often, land acquisiton is the issue. It delays the project, leading to cost escalation,” said a senior revenue department official.
The state government has also decided now to acquire private land by direct purchase through negotiation. This means the state government may offer compensation at rates more than four times the RR rate if the project is really important for the government. For instance, the compensation announced by the state government for land procurement for the Mumbai-Nagpur Supercommunication Highway is nearly six times the RR rate.