Vijayawada: Farmers agitating agai-nst the shifting of the AP capital from Amaravati will be left high and dry because certain clauses in the development agreement they entered into with the then Chandrababu Naidu government proving detrimental to their interests.
The agreement is silent on two crucial issues. It is restricted to the development a particular area in lands owned by and pooled from farmers and in no way binds the government to retain the capital for which the land was pooled. Secondly, it is weak on securing the farmers’ interests in the event of the Amaravati dream project failing to take off or being abandoned in the middle.
On top of it, the development agreement between the Capital Region Development Authority and farmers gives enormous power to the government to “cancel the agreement at any point of time without giving any reasons thereof.”
The future of the Amaravati capital project proposed in the 33,000 acres pooled from farmers is in the doldrums following the decision of Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy to move the Secretariat and the High Court out of Amaravati.
Contrary to claims of former chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, the chief architect of Amaravati, that he gave top priority to secure farmers’ interests, legal experts caution against the very development agreement is weakening their case.
“It is not a foolproof agreement. It is not explicit on the fate of farmers in the event of the project getting shelved and did not define in clear terms the relief the farmer is entitled to,” senior advocate R.N. Hemendranath Reddy told Deccan Chronicle.
On the other hand, the agreement took several precautions on securing the interests of not only the CRDA but the agencies which would buy the developed land from the government. The CRDA prohibited the farmers from stopping the development works and claimed that the specific clause was incorporated in the interest of prospective purchasers and the scheme.
Recently, Jana Sena chief Pawan Kalyan recollected his interaction with Mr Naidu in which he sought to know how he would guarantee the continuation of capital and success of land pooling scheme in the event of change in the government. Mr Naidu on several occasions announced that adequate steps would be taken to give legal sanctity to Amaravati and ensure its continuation irrespective of the party in power.
Stating that there would be limitations in incorporating the capital related clauses in the CRDA agreement with farmers, Telugu Desam Rajya Sabha member Kanakamedala Ravindra Kumar said a clause was incorporated wherein farmers were entitled for damages for breach of any of the terms of the agreement by the CRDA.
Meanwhile, the ruling YSR Congress wanted to turn the tables against Mr Naidu and project itself as the saviour of farmers. Through the proposed Bill repealing the A P CRDA Act, the present government sought to assure the farmers that it would develop the plots and hand them over to the farmers....