Bihar Farmers Demand Fair Compensation for Patna-Buxar Highway Widening Project

Reported by

Alok

Legal Data by

Edited by

Updated by

Published on

October 7, 2016

October 7, 2016

Updated on

October 7, 2016

Location of Conflict

Buxar

Bhojpur district

Buxar

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Roads

(

)

People Affected by Conflict

2400

Households Affected by Conflict

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

557

ha

Starting Year

2012

State

Bihar

Sector

Infrastructure

The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) had signed an agreement for fourlaning the highway between Patna and Buxar with Gammon India in February 2012. While the work was estimated to be completed within 30 months, Gammon failed to even commence work on the project, and consequently the NHAI terminated the agreement. Further, hurdles in land acquisition led to a seemingly indefinite delay in the construction of the project until 2017. Farmers who had willingly given up their land for the acquisition have been demanding fair compensation. In their writs and petitions with the high court in Patna in 2013, 2014 and 2018, the farmers have alleged violation of the Land Acquisition Act, 2013, and the National Highways Act, 1956, in disregarding the consent of the farmers for land acquisition, along with delay in and inadequate payment of compensation. The farmers are eligible to receive compensation for their lands at the commercial rate, but the land acquisition department is allegedly intent on providing compensation at the agricultural rate, which is considerably lower. Having organised themselves under the banner of Land Acquisition NH84 Sangharsh Samiti, many farmers have protested by organising marches and dharnas. In a backlash, several farmers have been harassed by zonal officers and even threatened with legal action.  In 2019, the process of land acquisition was operational in 42 villages in Buxar, with only few farmers having received compensation. Many farmers had refused compensation as protest. In 2020, local media reports noted the presence of cracked roads in the highway and the overall lack of quality maintenance.

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Demand for more compensation than promised

Complaint against procedural violations

Other Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Region Classification

Urban

Type of Land

Both

Type of Common Land

Forest and Non-Forest

Total investment involved (in Crores):

681.67

Type of investment:

Cost of Project

Year of Estimation

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

Land Acquisition Laws, Other

Legislations/Policies Involved

Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013
Section 2(2) [Requirement of prior informed consent in cases of public-private partnerships]; Section 27 [Determination of compensation includes all assets attached to the land]; Section 28 [Parameters to be considered in determination of compensation includes market value and all damage caused]; Section 38 [Power to take possession only after all compensation has been paid]; Section 105 [This section provides for acquisition taking place under certain Union Acts to be exempt from the process under the Act, provided that compensation is provided in accordance with the First Schedule, rehabilitation is carried out as per the Second Schedule and infrastructure amenities are provided as per the Third Schedule]; The Fourth Schedule [This schedule exempts the National Highways Act, 1956, from the application of the Act]
National Highways Act, 1956
Section 3A [Power of the Union government to acquire land for public purpose by notification]; Section 3G [Determination of compensation under the Act includes market value plus damages]; Section 3J [1894 Land Acquisition Act does not apply]
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    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

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    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

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    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

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:

Controversial land acquisition by the government

Incorrect estimation of compensation

Delay in compensation

Violation of free prior informed consent

Non-payment of compensation/promised compensation

Legal Status:

In Court

Status of Case In Court

Pending

Whether any adjudicatory body was approached

No

Name of the adjudicatory body

Name(s) of the Court(s)

High Court of Bihar at Patna

Case Number

Patna High Court CWJC No.20708 of 2013, CWJC No.18918 of 2012, CWJC No. 23137/2018

Main Reasoning/Decision of court

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

Judicial harassment

Whether criminal law was used against protestors:

Reported Details of the Violation:

Several farmers have been harassed by the zonal officers and even threatened with legal action.

Date of Violation

Location of Violation

Nature of Protest

Complaints/petitions/letters/memorandums to officials

Refusal of compensation

Development of a network or collective

Protests/marches

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

Road Construction Department

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:

Gammon India Limited, PNC Infratech Limited

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Communities/Local Organisations in the Conflict:

None

Resources Related to Conflict

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

Image Credit:  

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Documented By

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Reviewed By

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Updated By

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