The Andhra Pradesh government on Thursday told the Hyderabad High Court that it will not issue any statutory notification for acquiring lands for the Capital Region immediately.
The statement was made by the State’s Additional Advocate General Dammalapati Srinivas before Justice M.S. Ramachandra Rao in the vacation court. The judge was dealing with a writ petition filed by Abhista Realty and Ventures Private Ltd and others. The petitioners challenged a government order (GO 166) issued by AP which exempts the Capital City Development Project from the rigours of two clauses in the Land Acquisition law of 2013. These clauses require social impact assessment to be made before acquisition of land and place stiff restrictions on acquiring multi-crop lands.
The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, in the original form, mandates that before acquiring land from citizens a social impact assessment has to be made. Further, unless it is extremely unavoidable, multi-crop lands should not be acquired. After the recent ordinance passed by the Central government amending the earlier law, infrastructure projects and four other projects are exempted from these two clauses. The AP government issued GO 166 on May 14 declaring that building its capital qualifies as a development project under the law and therefore the present acquisition of land for the capital city can be exempted from the social impact assessment and multi-crop clauses. Cousel for the petitioners Jandhyala Ravishankar said such an exemption was bad in law.