Affected families decry reduced rate of land compensation


RUKSIN, 12 Mar: The railway project affected families of East Siang district on Friday expressed unhappiness over the reduced value of the lands acquired for the extended Murkongselek-Pasighat broad gauge railway track (Phase-II).

They alleged that the state government has reduced the land value for compensation under the influence of the NF Railway.

While the affected landowners of the Phase-I project were paid compensation @ Rs 1,782 (Rs 891×2 including 100 percent solation and 12 percent interest) per square metre of land, the state government has fixed a rate of Rs 463.59 per square metre without including Factor-2 multiplication, which is causing concern among the 138 affected families.

The affected families under the banner of the Railway Project Affected Land Owners Association assembled in a meeting at Ruksin on Friday and discussed the issue.

The meeting, chaired by its president Gagam Ering, took the decision to submit a representation to Chief Minister Pema Khandu, pleading with him to review the new notification regarding fixation of land value.

In another resolution, they demanded that the railway authority pay 12 percent interest on the land value for occupying their croplands without payment of compensation for five years (under the provisions provided by the Land Acquisition and Rehabilitation Act, 2013).

The members of the association warned the government that they would take legal recourse if their demands remain unheard.

It may be recalled that the farmers affected by the Phase-I project (national highway at Ruksin to Niglok IGC) were paid land compensation @ Rs 891 per square metre along with 100 percent solation and 12 percent interest per annum.

“The state government’s land management secretary, pretending a complaint of exorbitant rate received from the NF Railway officials, issued the new notification without using Factor-2 multiplication as per the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, in case of Phase-II project,” one of the affected families said.

Dissatisfied with the new notification, the affected families had last year moved the state government, demanding compensation as per the previous rate.

The state government later issued an order that the payment would be made with the same rate fixed for Jonai (Assam) without using Factor-2 multiplication.

The aggrieved farmers, who are reluctant to receive the rate of compensation, questioned the state government over the vast difference in the value of lands within the same zone, having the same topography.

It is said that that the affected families of Jonai (Assam) were paid land compensation (under the same rail project) using Factor-2 multiplication, but the affected families of East Siang, bordering Jonai, are being deprived of the benefit.