This working paper looks at the new Land Acquisition Rehabilitation and Resettlement (LARR) Bill, 2011 and explores key issues within the text of the Bill and the larger political context of land acquisition in India.
In particular, it explores issues relating to Eminent Domain and ‘public purpose,’ rehabilitation and resettlement, compensation, safeguards for ‘Project Affected Persons’ (PAPs), processes (including the urgency clause), linkages with environment, applicability of the proposed enactment as well as crucial areas of non-applicability. In doing so, the paper also asks larger legal and political questions regarding land acquisition in the backdrop of constitutional debates pertaining to the Bill’s implications for federalism and within a detailed analysis of the most recent ronouncements of the Supreme Court. On ‘public purpose’, the paper infers that even if the new Bill renders the concept less vague, it will still not stop the Judiciary from looking into questions of abuse in actual land acquisition or use of the land. What the LARR Bill could however do is allow a clearer legal framework within which the Judiciary could look into these questions in general, and on ‘public purpose’ in particular.
The paper also looks at potential scenarios, and in particular, possible intended (or unintended) consequences of the enactment for future urbanisation patterns in India.
Authors and Publishers
The Indian Institute for Human Settlements (IIHS) is a national education institution committed to the equitable, sustainable and efficient transformation of Indian settlements.
NRMC is a technical and managerial advisory firm in the development sector that provides evidence-based solutions for sustainable, equitable and inclusive development.
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