The Bilaspur High Court today upheld the state government’s process of acquiring land for four proposed private power plants in Raigarh and Janjgir districts.
Stating that the projects were in public interest, a division bench of the high court set aside the earlier order given by the single judge bench of Justice Prashant Mishra, which had annulled the acquisition of land.
Twenty four writ petitions, including those filed by the state government, Chattisgarh State Industrial Development Corporation (CSIDC) and the four concerned companies, had challenged the single judge bench’s order given in 2012.
Chhattisgarh’s Advocate General Jugal Kishore Gilda said the division bench of the high court, comprising Chief Justice Navin Sinha and Justice Pritinker Diwaker, gave a 90-page ruling in which it said the acquisition of land for the power plants by KSK Wardha, Moser Baer in Janjgir district and SKS and Visa in Raigarh district, was valid.
Gilda added that around 50 farmers from these villages had filed eight separate petitions in the high court here opposing the government’s move. They argued that the process was against the provisions of the Land Acquisition Act and agriculture land was far more important for them than power plants.
On September 4, 2012, the single bench of had annulled the acquisition of farmland for four power companies proposed in Raigarh and Janjgir districts.
The single bench had said that it did not find it appropriate for the government to acquire agriculture land for the plants in the name of public interest.