‘Give more compensation to land losers in Narmada project’, Supreme Court directive

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New Delhi: In a recent judgment, the Supreme Court has directed the Gujarat government to pay maximum compensation to the landowners whose lands were acquired for the Vadodara branch canal of the Narmada project. A bench of Justice Bela M Trivedi and Justice Dipankar Datta set aside the Gujarat High Court’s order reducing the compensation payable.

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Vadodara Land was acquired for the project at Morlipora, Kamitha and Nimta villages in Waghodia taluk of the district and the land acquisition officer calculated the market value of the land at Rs 1.90 per square meter. Later in May 2007, the reference court increased the compensation amount by concluding that the market value of the land should be Rs.40 per square meter. The state also appealed to the High Court, where it succeeded.

Supreme Court “In a welfare state like ours, where we have promised social and economic justice to all citizens, it would be fair and just if the appellants were treated like other aggrieved landowners,” the bench said. The Supreme Court ordered that whatever amount the appellant is entitled to, less the amount received so far, be paid within 90 days with simple interest at the rate of 5% per annum from 10 May 2007.

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