Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Singur SEZ package is ideal, says Yechury

Our Bureau

`There is nothing wrong in acquiring agricultural lands, if it was
absolutely necessary.'


Visakhapatnam Feb. 6 There is a need for bringing about amendments in
the Special Economic Zones Act to do justice to those losing lands and
also to ensure proper use of land acquired for the purpose, according to
Mr Sitaram Yechury, Polit Bureau member of the CPI (M) and also member
of the Rajya Sabha.

At a press meet here on Tuesday, he said the Singur SEZ package was
ideal and other States should emulate West Bengal in this respect. He
said that farmers should be paid 50 per cent more than the market rate
for the lands acquired for SEZs.

Besides, he said, 50 per cent of the land allotted for SEZs should be
used for production, which currently was only 25, and 25 per cent should
be used for infrastructure development. The remaining 25 per cent should
be used for commercial housing.

He said the compensation package should also take into account the
agricultural labour in the area and they should also be compensated.
They should be imparted training and absorbed in the units coming up in

He said there was nothing wrong in acquiring agricultural lands, if it
was absolutely necessary, provided only one crop was being grown on the
land and it was a rainfed area.

Referring to the Singur controversy, Mr Yechury said, "We have acquired
1,000 acres by paying 150 per cent of the market rate to the affected
farmers and we have also compensated the labour dependent on the farm
land. Therefore, there is no justification for an agitation. Both the
Congress and Trinamool Congress are distorting facts."


On the group of ministers set up under the chairmanship of Mr Pranab
Mukherjee for evolving a proper rehabilitation policy for those affected
by SEZs, he said there should be a uniform policy for all States. "We
also want the tax concessions to be reviewed. Besides, the labour laws
should be implemented in SEZs," he said.

He said the Union Government was in favour of implementing labour laws
in SEZs, but the States would have to pass the requisite laws, as it was
a State subject. "Therefore, we want the Centre to issue a directive to
the States," he added.

Mr Yechury, also the chairman of the Parliamentary standing committee on
transport, tourism and culture, said all efforts would be made to
develop inland waterways in the State and country.


Post a Comment

<< Home