Bengal govt to return land to 9,117 farmers in Singur on 14 September

Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee today asserted land 'parcha' would be distributed among 9,117 farmers on 14 September and that her government would fully comply with the Supreme Court order cancelling the Singur land acquisition "line by line."

'Parcha' is a document which establishes the ownership of a farmer over a piece of land in revenue records.

The Supreme Court had on 31 August ruled that the land acquisition process in Singur was faulty and the acquisition was not made for public purpose as claimed and had directed the state government to return the land parcels to their original owners within 12 weeks.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee also said 800 cheques would be distributed among the farmers who had not taken them earlier during the erstwhile Left Front government when compensation was paid for acquiring the land.

"Of the total 997 acres of land acquired in Singur, the district administration has completed the survey and demarcation work for 620 acres, and 800 cheques are ready for distribution among land-owners," Banerjee told reporters at the state secretariat.

"Altogether 9,117 parchas are ready for handing over to the farmers on September 14 when 'Singur Diwas' would be observed," she said.

"We will follow the Supreme Court ruling line by line," she said, adding the land would be turned cultivable.

On the temporary structures built on the land by the Tatas, Banerjee said these will be removed in the next few days.

"There are some temporary structures on the land. We hope they (the Tatas) will remove them within the next 2-3 days. I told Amit Mitra (state finance minister) to request them (Tatas) to remove them".

"If they remove them it is good, otherwise we will remove them," she said as she stressed the government was acting as per the apex court's landmark verdict.

On whether the government was facing non-cooperation from the Tatas, she replied in the negative.

"They have taken it sportingly and we have also taken it sportingly. The Tatas are also working in Bengal. There is no problem," she said.

The government would also send a CD to the court to apprise them of the "hard work" being done to honour the order, she said.