850 acres to be acquired through land pooling
850 acres to be acquired through land pooling

-    The district administration will acquire another 850 acres through land acquisition
-    While the proposed port requires 5,200 acres of land, the govt currently has 3,000 acres
-    Krishna Collector B Lakshmikantham says teams will be sent to villages to convince farmers to give land under the land pooling scheme

Vijayawada: Krishna district administration has decided to acquire another 1700 acres of land in the coastal villages for construction of deep sea water port in the district headquarters in Machilipatnam. The proposed port needs 5,200 acres land. Out of which, the government has 3,000 acres. And efforts are on to get another 1700 acres land. Since land acquisition is very costly affair, the district administration has decided to get 850 acres land under the land pooling scheme (LPS) and another 850 acres under land acquisition process. 

Earlier, the officials have acquired nearly 600 acres land from the villagers during the last two years. The State government had allotted the port construction works to Navayuga Constructions Limited. The company is ready to start the works. But, the land acquisition is getting delayed for nearly two years.

District Collector B Lakshmikantham told The Hans India that the district administration will send teams to the villages and convince the farmers to give the land under the land pooling scheme (LPS). He said the government had successfully taken the lands from the farmers in the capital region of Amaravati and similar approach will be applied in Machilipatnam also for construction of the sea port. 

He said the district administration is facing a challenging task of paying several hundred crores to get 1700 acres from the farmers. He felt land acquisition is very costly affair since the implementation of Land Acquisition 2013 Bill. He said the district administration has to spend several hundred crores for payment of compensation if 1700 acres land is acquired from the farmers of seven villages. He said land pooling is one of the best options for the district administration to get around 850 acres land.

He said there are many misconceptions among the farmers about the land pooling and allotment of land back to the farmers. He said the district administration will try to convince the farmers to come forward to give their land under the LPS.  Land acquisition or land pooling will depend on the 900 farmers who own 1700 acres land.

Machilipatnam MP Konakalla Narayana and MLA and Minister for Sports, Law and Justice Kollu Ravindra are vigorously campaigning for the port and trying to educate farmers on the land acquisition and land pooling.

Machilipatnam port was the poll plank in 2014 Assembly and Lok Sabha elections. Both the TDP and YSRCP leaders had assured the people of Machilipatnam on construction of the port. More than three-and-half years passed since the TDP was voted to power, still land acquisition work has not been completed. Former minister and YSRCP leader Kolusu Parthasarathy alleged that the TDP government had no commitment on construction of the port. He felt the development of Krishna district will depend on the construction of the port.

On the other hand, the Left leaders last year visited some villages and spoke to the farmers. CPI State secretary K Ramakrishna said the Left parties would oppose land acquisition if the government gives less compensation to the farmers.

He demanded that the government should pay compensation as per the 2013 LA Act. He said the Left parties are not against the construction of the port but opposing the forcible land acquisition.

Md Ameen