Around 800 farmers of Greater Noida west on Tuesday staged a protest outside the Greater Noida authority’s administrative building in Knowledge Park-IV area demanding residential plots proportional to 10% of the area of land acquired from them.
The authority is currently allotting plots equal to 6% of the total area.
Farmers from around 40 villages in SUVs, tractor-trolleys and bullock carts reached the office building around 12:30pm and raised slogans against the government. The authority had to call a force of around 100 policemen to control the agitated farmers. The protesters forcefully entered the authority building as well and ended their protest at 4.30pm after additional chief executive officer Bal Krishan Tripathi assured that their demands will be heard.
The farmers protested a day after the Greater Noida authority chief executive officer Debasish Panda prepared 2,353 residential plot allotment letters to farmers in lieu of their land acquired for urbanisation.
“The authority is fooling us by allotting plots equal to 6% of the area. As per Allahabad high court order on October 21, 2011, the authority is supposed to give 10% residential plots against the total land acquired by the government, along with 64% hiked land compensation. The Supreme Court had on May 14, 2015, upheld the HC order. On May 11, 2016, the authority in its board meeting approved a decision to give 10%. Why is the authority trying to fool us now?” said Manvir Bhati, leader of Kisan Sangharsh Samiti, who led the protest.
Greater Noida authority chairman Rahul Bhatnagar, chief executive officer Debasish Panda and Gautam Budh Nagar district magistrate BN Singh are scheduled to meet farmers at 10.30am on Wednesday to discuss the issue.
“If the authority does not have adequate land, it can give us money for the plots like the Noida authority. We will accept money instead of 4% land. If they do not give us 10% plot or money, we will stage an indefinite protest,” said Ajay Chaudhary, a farmer.
Greater Noida west has around 3.5 lakh under-construction housing units, of which around 40,000 are occupied at present. In 2009-10, farmers had opposed the land acquisition for setting up industries.However, the UP government allotted group housing plots to builders instead of setting up industries. Farmers had then moved the Allahabad high court.
The Greater Noida authority is facing a financial crisis and is not in a position to give additional 4% of land or money at present.
“We will talk to them and discuss their issues. We have already processed their allotment letters for 6% plots and have been working for their welfare. Now they should understand our limitations and cooperate with us for development,” said Panda.