Land Bill not anti-farmer; to create rural infrastructure: Confederation of Indian Industry

Even as the Land Acquisition Bill faces stiff opposition from various quarters, industry body CII on Thursday firmly backed the proposed legislation saying it is not “anti-farmer” and will facilitate creation of rural infrastructure.

“The issue of land continues to be a deterrent (to investments). While there is a very practical and sensible reform that has been announced by the government, which is definitely not anti-farmer, it is very pro-farmer, it is facing problems. If this continues to face problems it is going to deter investors,” Sumit Mazumder, president of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), said.

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The industry body strongly supports the land ordinance as it will exempt projects in key sectors from mandatory consent requirements, he said, adding the legislation is supportive of farmers who want to sell their land and receive good compensation.

This will help the government facilitate building of rural infrastructure, Mazumder added.

The industry body also believes that the “ordinance route has to be taken for quick decision-making”.

Besides, the CII has projected the Indian economy to grow in the range of 7.8 to 8.2 per cent during the current fiscal.

Outlining his views on the economic outlook, Mazumder said that India is now the fastest growing economy in the world.

The industry will recover while service are expected to maintain their current pace of growth in 2015-16, he said, adding that in the medium term, a multi-pronged strategy of focusing on the manufacturing sector, providing greater impetus to skill development and investing in agriculture and infrastructure would raise the growth rate to 9-10 per cent.

On the tax demand notices of Rs 40,000 crore slapped on foreign institutional investors (FIIs) recently, CII president designate Naushad Forbes said: “I don’t think it will actually have an impact on investments because this is focused on FIIs, it is not focused on broader investment environment. I think the broader investment environment is very positive”.

“The government has very clearly said that there will be no retrospective taxation. However, the government does have the right to go back if there is something wrong over there. If you have wronged, you can’t get away with it,” Mazumder said.

Source: The Times Of India

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