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Singur: CPI(M) Politburo admits mistake and blames 1894 Land Acquisition Act

Sulagna Sengupta | Updated on: 3 September 2016, 13:29 IST

With CPI(M) cornered in West Bengal after the Singur verdict, the Politburo admitted on 2 September that they had made "administrative and political mistakes" and that the Singur issue has proved to be costly for them.

Also read - Singur verdict: the Didi-fication of Bengal is now complete

The Politburo also blamed the 1894 Land Acquisition Act for the Singur fiasco and said that the anachronistic law should be replaced, as it does not protect farmers adequately.

It also stated that it shall oppose all alleged efforts including those by BJP-led Central government aimed at diluting the 2013 Act. The party, the Politburo said, stands opposed to such dilution already being currently undertaken by many state governments.

Land goals

Senior CPI(M) leaders claim that they have already said that they are in favour of providing compensation to land owners and that there should be no discrimination between those who had accepted the compensation and those who did not.

CPI(M) leader Sujan Chakraborty said, "We support the Politburo statement as we believe that it was an administrative and political mistake. The Singur issue has proved to be very costly."

While Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee hasn't yet spoken up, even after the Politburo released its statement, CPI(M) leader Surjya Kanta Mishra says, "We will see how the survey work is being carried out and whether or not all the owners have got their share."

While the party will continue to fight any kind of dilution to the 1894 Act, they also feel that there is a need for some amendments with the security of the famers as the foremost concern.

The landmark verdict

In a setback to CPI(M)-led Left Front, the SC recently set aside the Acquisition of around 1,000 acres by the Left Front Government to set up Tata Motors' ambitious Nano car manufacturing plant. Through this project, the government's intentions at the time had been to develop industry in the state and create jobs.

However, the acquisition process had to be undertaken under the 1894 Land Acquisition Act, which was the only legal instrument available at that time.

The government's intentions at the time had been to develop industry in the state and create jobs

After the project was abandoned, the TMC government introduced the Singur Land Rehabilitation and Development Bill in the assembly to return land to those who had refused to take any compensation.

The CPI(M) now says that the land should be returned to all the erstwhile owners. It had stated that there should be no discrimination between those who had accepted the compensation and those who did not.

Now the SC judgment has decreed that the land acquired should be returned to all the original owners, along with the compensation due to them.

Edited by Aleesha Matharu

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First published: 3 September 2016, 13:29 IST
 
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