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SC rejects farmers’ plea against Reliance SEZ
Legal Correspondent

New Delhi, November 13
The Supreme Court today refused to intervene in the acquisition of a huge chunk of land from farmers for the Reliance Industry’s special economic zone (SEZ) by the Gujarat Government.

The Bench of Mr Justice K.G. Balakrishnan and Mr Justice D.K. Jain, which had earlier said that no PIL on the SEZ policy would be entertained, but if some affected farmers came to the court, it might consider their petition, today dismissed a special leave petition (SLP) of the farmers from Jamnagar in Gujarat.

The court said the state government had taken a proper decision after taking into account relevant aspects related to the case.

The SLP by the farmers, led by Shah Kantilal Depar, had challenged the Gujarat High Court order dismissing their petition. They had alleged that of the 10,000 acres of land acquired for the SEZ, around 9,000 acres belonged to them. Acquisition of the land did not fulfil the conditions laid down under the Land Acquisition Act permitting the acquiring of the land by government for public purposes, their counsel argued.

The court, however, said the government and Reliance would take proper care of providing adequate compensation to the affected farmers and indicated if there was any dispute on payment of it, they could approach the court.

The farmers’ another contention was that the government had entirely relied upon the report of the Collector of the district concerned, who had not personally assessed the situation, but relied upon a report of the Deputy Collector.



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