ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Land Acquisition Act and the Ordinance

Some Issues

This note tries to capture what has been attempted in the Land Acquisition Act, 2013 and the ordinance to amend it that has been hitherto promulgated thrice. It discusses in detail the provisions on public purpose, social impact assessment, compensation, and rehabilitation and resettlement.

On 12 May the Lok Sabha referred the Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Second Amendment) Bill 2015 to a joint committee of Parliament (Indian Express, 13 May 2015). This is to amend the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in the Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 (Ministry of Law and Justice 2013) which was passed by the Lok Sabha in August 2013 during the tenure of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government and became effective on 1 January 2014. The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government made certain amendments to the act and an ordinance was promulgated in December 2014. Later, a bill giving effect to these changes was approved by the Lok Sabha in March 2015 with some changes but was not put to vote in the Rajya Sabha. This was then promulgated for the second time as an ordinance in April 2015 (Ministry of Law and Justice 2015). Since the ordinance was to lapse in early July, on 30 May the land acquisition ordinance was promulgated for the third time.

Much of the 2013 act remains as it is and in this note, we will call it the act (wherever it is unchanged) and the amendments (that is, the changes) passed on 20 April by the Lok Sabha as the ordinance.

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