Telangana farmers seek better compensation

High Corut asks Telangana state to renegotiate price of acquired land in Duddeda village

HYDERABAD: The Telangana High Court on Thursday expressed displeasure over payment of varying levels of compensation to the assigned pattadars of land admeasuring six acres and 37 guntas in Survey No. 692 of Duddeda of Kondapaka mandal of Siddipet district.

Revenue authorities had offered only Rs 8 lakh per acre as compensation to the pattadars along with a 200-yard house site for each of the four farmers, whereas the market value was around Rs 70 lakh per acre.

Even as per the official assessment made by the revenue authorities, this was nearly ten times the figure offered to the assigned land owners.

The landowners approached the court challenging the takeover of their lands without payment of proper compensation.

A claim made by the state government earlier was that it took away the possession of 6.37 acres of land as the assigned pattadars had given the razinama (affirmation that they voluntarily resigned from the land) under a provision in the Telangana Land Revenue Rules, 1951.

This provision enabled individuals to submit a letter, stating that they relinquished ownership of the land voluntarily.

The court rejected the explanation of the revenue authorities and directed the district collector to renegotiate the rate with the petitioners and pay them a better compensation.

The court had been told that the land thus acquired was given to one of the farmers whose patta land was acquired by the government to build the double bedroom (2BHK) houses.

The petitioners’ contention was that the authorities indulged in discrimination in the hand over of their land to one farmer by forcibly taking away the plots from them.

On instruction from the court, collector P. Venkatrama Reddy on Thursday informed that he held negotiations with the petitioners and the government was ready to pay Rs 8 lakh per acre to farmers along with a 200-yard house site for each of the four farmers.

The farmers however rejected this offer and sought Rs 70 lakh as compensation per acre.

The collector also stated that the government had paid the same amount for all the farmers of 360 acres whose land was acquired for raising the collectorate complex, the SP office and various other infrastructure facilities.

Venugopal, counsel for the petitioners, submitted before the court that no negotiation was done as was advised by the court.

“Only some oral communication was forwarded to the petitioners on Wednesday evening, a day before the hearing of the case in the High Court, urging the farmers to accept the compensation of Rs 8 lakh per acre.”

The court directed counsel to submit a rejoinder with the contentions of the farmers and the communication received from the revenue authorities on the offer of compensation.

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