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All outstanding SEZ issues & concerns currently under consideration

Mar '07
All outstanding concerns and issues pertaining to Special Economic Zones (SEZs) have been placed before the Empowered Group of Ministers (EGOM) and are currently under consideration, Shri Ashwani Kumar, Minister of State in the Ministry of Commerce & Industry, said in a statement in reply to a question in Rajya Sabha.

Since land is a state subject, acquisition of land comes under the purview of the state governments. Each State acquires land for various purposes and has its own compensation and Relief & Rehabilitation measures depending upon the requirements and necessities of respective states.

These are applicable for acquisition of land for industrial purposes also. Besides, the government had formulated the National Policy on Resettlement and Rehabilitation of Project Affected Families in 2003, which lays down minimum provisions of benefits to be given to project affected people, and is applicable to projects displacing 500 families or more en masse in plain areas of 250 families or more in hilly and tribal areas.

The policy provides broad guidelines for all concerned and offers minimum provisions, while the states or public sector units have the option to offer better benefit packages.

Moreover, the government is currently formulating a revised rehabilitation policy namely the National Rehabilitation Policy 2007 with the objective to minimise displacement and to promote, as far as possible, non-displacing or least displacing alternatives, ensure adequate rehabilitation packages and expeditious implementation of the rehabilitation process with the active participation of the displaced persons.

As and when the new policy is implemented, it will apply to acquisition of land for industries.

As per information available, some cases of protests by farmers have been reported in West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Haryana and Maharashtra against acquisition of land by State Government for setting up industries including SEZs, he said in a statement laid on the table of the House.

Press Information Bureau

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