Farmers in Dhar Await Compensation for Land Acquired for Auto-Testing Track

Reported by

Arpit Deshmukh

Legal Data by

Edited by

Updated by

Published on

January 15, 2017

January 15, 2017

Updated on

January 15, 2017

Location of Conflict

Pithampur

Agrakhedi and Sagore

Dhar

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Other Kind of Infrastructure

Auto Testing Track

(

)

People Affected by Conflict

1031

Households Affected by Conflict

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

462

ha

Starting Year

2007

State

Madhya Pradesh

Sector

Infrastructure

The Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises in 2007 proposed to build the world's second-largest auto-testing track at Pithampur village in Dhar district. The 14.5-kilometres long track, which can also serve as a high-speed racing track, displaced over 1,000 people. Even after a decade, many of them have not been paid compensation.
Initially the farmers rejected the compensation for being too less, and moved the district court. They demanded INR 1.5 crore per hectare. The court ordered the compensation at INR 48 lakh per hectare. The farmers moved the high court which ordered the compensation amount raised to INR 96 lakh per hectare. The state government appealed to the Supreme Court, which lowered the amount to INR 45 lakh per hectare, and ordered the government to pay the same within four months. But many farmers have still not received the full amount as the state government has announced that it would pay in instalments.
In February 2016, affected farmers from 10 villages staged a protest against the government for delay in compensation. The police fired tear gas shells and resorted to lathi charge.
In March 2016, in a session of the Legislative Assembly, some members staged a walkout protesting against the government’s delay in handing over compensation to the affected people. Of the INR 2,000 crore to be paid, the state had only paid INR 494.17 crore by 2016.
The track was inaugurated in 2018. In a case dated February 19, 2019, between the Union of India and Salimuddin, the Madhya Pradesh High Court noted that the competent authority should complete the exercise of paying compensation within 12 weeks from the date of issuance of the certified copy of the order passed by the High Court.
Despite the court order, 50 families are still waiting for their due. In November 2019, the families occupied the auto-testing track, but the district administration evicted them.
LCW tried to get in touch with NATRIP on July 28, 2020, but did not get any response.

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Demand for promised compensation

Complaint against procedural violations

Demand for more compensation than promised

Other Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Region Classification

Rural

Type of Land

Private

Type of Common Land

Total investment involved (in Crores):

740

Type of investment:

Investment Expected

Year of Estimation

2016

Page Number In Investment Document:

Has the Conflict Ended?

When did it end?

Why did the conflict end?

Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict

Legislations/Policies Involved

Land Acquisition Act, 1894
Section 4 [This section requires compensation rates to be made public at the time of issue of notification]; Section 11 [This section provides for the district collector to make a compensation award]; Section 23 [This section lays down the factors to be considered while determining the amount of compensation]Section 23 [This section talks about the payment of compensation]; 
Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013
Section 24(2) [Under this section, if more than 5 years have commenced since the compensation award was made under the 1894 Act, or if compensation has not been paid, land acquisition proceedings shall take place under the 2013 Act.]
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Whether claims/objections were made as per procedure in the relevant statute

What was the claim(s)/objection(s) raised by the community?

What was the Decision of the Concerned Government Department?

Legal Processes and Loopholes Enabling the Conflict:

Incorrect estimation of compensation

Controversial land acquisition by the government

Non-payment of compensation/promised compensation

Legal Status:

In Court

Status of Case In Court

Disposed

Whether any adjudicatory body was approached

Name of the adjudicatory body

Name(s) of the Court(s)

High Court of Madhya Pradesh

Case Number

First Appeal No. 1540 of 2018

Main Reasoning/Decision of court

The appellant sought payment of differential compensation based on the potential value of the land for the land acquired for the auto-testing track and the broad gauge railway track passing Agrakhedi and Sagore villages in Dhar tehsil. In F.A.No. 664 of 2018, the High Court of Madhya Pradesh held as per its order dated February 19, 2019, that the land owners are "entitled to difference of amount of compensation to be worked out by the competent authority." Note: This case does not cover all the land losers of the auto-testing track but only those who gave their land for both the projects, viz. the auto-testing track as well as the railway line.

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

Lathicharge/teargas/pellets

Whether criminal law was used against protestors:

Reported Details of the Violation:

In February 2016, affected farmers from 10 villages protested against the government for delay in compensation. During the protest, the police fired tear gas and resorted to lathi charge

Date of Violation

February 21, 2016

Location of Violation

Dhar

Nature of Protest

Advocacy (for inclusion in courts)

Protests/marches

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises

PSUs Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Government Authorities for Comments?

Name, Designation and Comment of the Government Authorities Approached

Corporate Parties Involved in the Conflict:

National Automotive Testing and R&D Infrastructure Project (NATRIP)

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Communities/Local Organisations in the Conflict:

Villagers

Resources Related to Conflict

  • News Articles Related to the Conflict:
  • Documents Related to the Conflict:
  • Links Related to the Conflict:

Image Credit:  

Image Credit:  

Documented By

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Reviewed By

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Updated By

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Edited By

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