Land Bill Battle in India: Congress Writes to BJP

Kisaan Satyagraha
Kisaan Satyagraha: Congress Protest in Delhi

By Rakesh Raman

In the persisting political gridlock over the Land Acquisition Bill in India, the opposition Congress party wrote a protest letter to the ruling BJP on Thursday.

In the letter – addressed to Nitin Gadkari, BJP’s Transport Minister – Congress has voiced its concerns over the proposed Bill, stating its stand on Gadkari’s invitation for a debate on the issue.

According to Congress, Gadkari today stated that Prime Minister (PM) Narendra Modi and the government are ready to consider all suggestions regarding Land Acquisition Bill.

He also asked opposition parties and NGOs to debate on the Bill while stating that he has written a letter to Congress President Sonia Gandhi and social activist Anna Hazare, who has planned a separate agitation on the issue.

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Congress has given its pointed reply to BJP – which is given below:

1. BJP and Gadkari should stop hoodwinking and attempting diversionary tactics to dilute the agony, pain and outrage among the entire farming community by Modi government’s sinister attempt to kill the soul and spirit of Right to Fair Compensation Act, 2013.

2. Will Modi and Gadkari answer as to why was the ordinance route adopted in the first place to completely dilute the 2013 Act if PM Modi was open to suggestions?

3. Will Modi and Gadkari answer as to why did BJP unanimously support Right to Fair Compensation Act, 2013 inside and outside Parliament nine months ago and why did they proceed to kill the same law within six months of coming to power even before it could be implemented?

4. Will Modi and Gadkari answer as to why they used the tyranny of majority in Lok Sabha to forcibly pass the Land Acquisition Ordinance despite nationwide protests and public outrage?

5. Will Modi and Gadkari answer as to why should complete political unanimity, built painstakingly by discussion with all stakeholders, States and Parliament by the Congress party over a period of two years was undone in a whimsical fashion by PM Modi to support a few crony capitalists?

6. Will Modi and Gadkari answer as to whether BJP is facing the jitters on account of the hoax and farce of Land Acquisition Ordinance having been called off by the complete opposition unity led by Congress President?

7. Why is the Rural Development Minister mum on the issue and why has Gadkari (who is a Transport Minister) become his spokesperson?

8. If Modi and BJP are sincere, they should first withdraw the Land Acquisition Ordinance and apologize to the entire farming community.

Earlier, on Monday, the youth wing of Congress, the Indian Youth Congress, launched a massive protest in Delhi against, what it calls, “BJP’s Land Snatching Ordinance.”

And to protest against government’s Land Ordinance, the anti-corruption crusader Hazare, who believes in the Gandhian philosophy, will begin a month-long Padyatra (foot march) on March 25 from Sevagram in Maharashtra, where Mahatma Gandhi had his residence.

Hazare has termed the Modi move as “anti-farmer” and an attack on Indian democracy, as, according to Hazare, government is trying to impose its will on farmers to acquire their land without their consent.

By Rakesh Raman, the managing editor of RMN Company

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This article is part of our editorial initiative called REAL VOTER that covers political developments in India. Click here to visit REAL VOTER.

Photo courtesy: Congress

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