Compensation nowhere in sight

Farmers are still waiting BDA to provide them with fair compensation for their land

The farmers met with senior officials from the Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) to press their demands for fair land compensation. This comes a day after BDA dropped the old Peripheral Device (PRR) tender over lack of clarity on land acquisition costs.

Raghu, a farmer from Anekal, said: ‘We met with the Commissioner today to discuss our apprehensions regarding various issues we have faced in the land acquisition process over the past 18 years. We have been assured that a meeting will soon be called with the Chief Minister to discuss the issues and find a solution.

Farmers say they are concerned that the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act 2013 will not apply to their land for the PRR project. They added that about 800 families in 65 villages are waiting for fair compensation from BDA for their land.

“We are ready to give up our land, with just compensation. The land acquisition process has been pending for over 18 years now. Moreover, the BDA has not conducted a single survey so far. They put out tenders, canceled and resumed the process. They should first compensate the farmers for their land before going into the bidding process,” said N Yellappaa farmer from the village of Sorahunase in Varthur.

To construct the 100 meter wide ring road, the BDA issued a notice in 2005 to acquire 1800 acres of land for the project. Work on the project has not yet started.

“If the project had taken off in 2007, we would not have applied. If they comply with the 2013 law, all farmers are ready to hand over their land. Otherwise, we will not let go of our property. The current market value of our land is Rs 10 crore per acre. While we will only receive around Rs 4 crore per acre as per the 2013 law, BDA is ready to pay around Rs 2 crore per acre,” said Srinivas, another farmer from Mavallipura Village.

The farmers say that although they have sought clarification from the BDA on the matter, they have yet to receive a clear answer. It makes them anxious. “The authorities should clear up our confusion over compensation. The call for tenders should only be launched after settlement of the terms of compensation. While hundreds of farmers will be affected due to the unfair compensation deal that BDA is trying to reach, we are unable to secure support. It looks like there are no farmers in the city.

Although we have our land within the boundaries of the BBMP next to high rise buildings and apartments, it has no value,” said Gautam Jainanother farmer.


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