BJP forced to eat crow on land bill by Congress: Choudhry

BJP forced to eat crow on land bill by Congress: Choudhry

hqdefaultChandigarh, Aug 4 - Leader of the Haryana Congress Legislature Party (CLP) Kiran Choudhry, has described the backing down by the BJP-led NDA Government on the changes it wanted to make in the UPA legislation on how to acquire farm land for industry as “a sure victory of the Congress which stuck to its guns and made the BJP eat the crow”. In a statement issued here today, the former Excise and Taxation Minister said the land bill had been formulated with great thought by the UPA. But the BJP, which wanted to please the industrialists and corporates to return the favours taken in the elections, tried to incorporate some changes and drop the consent clause which would work to the advantage of the big business at the cost of the farmers. “This was opposed tooth and nail by the Congress which stood firm on its ground in the interest of the farmers. The firm stand taken by the Congress and backed by other parties made the BJP Government took back all the anti-farmer provisions. Finally, the BJP was made to eat the crow. This is a victory of the people and the Congress Party,” she said. The backing down was forced down the throat of the BJP after the Narendra Modi Government failed to have its way through Parliament with what had been touted as the centerpiece of BJP’s economic reforms agenda. This leaves the door ajar for the states to pass their own business-friendly land reform laws,'' she added. Ms Choudhry said the changes sought to be incorporated by the Prime Minister in the law cleared by the UPA in 2013 were opposed by not only the Congress but also by some BJP allies who branded them as "anti-farmer". The Modi Government failed to get support for the amendments which sought to exempt projects in five categories from needing the consent of 80 per cent of the affected land owners, and the need for a survey to determine the social impact of the project. Left isolated, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, remarked, "Either the Centre must build a coalition and pass the land bill quickly, or give the flexibility to the states to pass their own laws." It is time the BJP Government have a relook at its stand on other measures and policies, Ms Choudhry demanded.

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