Land losers for proposed highway widening project demand fair compensation

They have been waiting for it since the start of acquisition process in 2015

The losers of the land in Mangaluru and Moodbidri taluks for the proposed four-laning of the Mangaluru- Moodbidri National Highway 169 have demanded payment of compensation as per the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (RFCTLARR) Act.

Talking to reporters here on Wednesday, Mariyanna Thomas, a former councillor and member of Rastriya Heddari 169 (13) Mangaluru- Moodidri Raste Agalikarana Bhoomalakara Horata Samiti, said land losers from Mangaluru and Moodbidri have been waiting for just compensation since the start of acquisition process in 2015. “We want compensation as per the RFCTLARR Act. We cannot accept any other form of calculation,” she said.

Residents of Addoru, Padavu, Badagulipady, Badaga Yedapadavu, Kandavara, Kudupu, Mooduperar, and Mooluru, Tenkulipady villages of Mangaluru taluk and of Badagamijar, Belvai, Marpady, Padumarnad, Puttige, Tenkamijar, and Todar villages of Moodbidri taluk will lose their land. Following the final notification for land acquisition, the Special Land Acquisition Officer (SLAO) carried out the survey of lands and properties and passed the final award. This was sent to the Project Director of National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), Mangaluru, who returned it to the SLAO on December 23, 2020 asking him to fix the compensation as per the guidelines of Central Valuation Committee (CVC) . The Deputy Commissioner on December 29, 2020 wrote to the Regional Officer of the NHAI in Bengaluru to pay compensation as per the RFCTLARR Act.

The Regional Officer of NHAI wrote to the Additional Chief Secretary, Public Works Department, asking the latter to direct Deputy Commissioner to fix the compensation as per the CVC guidelines.

Ms. Thomas said the SLAO is the competent authority and SLAO has to pass compensation award as per the RFCTLARR Act. When the RFCTLARR is in force there was no question of fixing compensation as per CVC guidelines, which does not take market value of the properties into consideration. “The award so passed as per the CVC guidelines will be far less to that under the RFCTLARR and the land losers cannot agree for such compensation” she added.

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