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Jayalalithaa opposes land bill, skips NITI Aayog meet

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J_Jayalalithaa_Chief_Minister_Of_Tamil_NaduChennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa on Wednesday expressed her government’s opposition to the land acquisition bill, maintaining certain provisions take away the safeguards required for farmers in the country.

In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Jayalalithaa expressed her inability to attend the second meeting of the Governing Council of NITI (National Institution for Transforming India) Aayog in New Delhi on Wednesday due to other pressing engagements.

The meeting would deliberate on the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, and amendments sought to be brought about by the NDA government.

As the Niti Aayog meeting has to be attended only by the chief ministers of different states, Jayalalithaa sent her speech conveying the state government’s views that are to be taken on record.

She said her government was opposed to Chapter III of Right to Fair Compensation and Tranparencey in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Amendment) Bill, 2015.

According to Jayalalithaa, Tamil Nadu farmers were strongly opposed to the provisions in the bill that empower state governments to exempt specified projects from the ambit of the Act.

Jayalalithaa said the amendment bill’s provisions were hence also unacceptable to the government of Tamil Nadu.

“We believe that the present amendments take away important safeguards that farmers and agriculture require. Hence, I urge the government of India not to press ahead with these amendments,” she said.

As per provisions of Chapter III, consent of 80 percent of the landowners have to be obtained if the land is acquired for private project.

If the land is proposed to be acquired for public-private-partnership projects, then consent of 70 percent of the landowners is to be obtained.

Further, a social impact assessment has to be made and there are limits on acquiring agricultural and multi-cropped land.

However these provisions would not apply to projects in defence and defence production, rural infrastructure including electrification, affordable housing and housing for the poor, industrial corridors, infrastructure and social infrastructure projects, including projects under public-private partnership, where the ownership of the land continues to vest with the government.

(IANS)

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Jayalalithaa’s death: Apollo submits documents

The mystery still continues after Apollo submitted treatment related documents

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The death of Amma continues to be a mystery. Wikimedia commons
The death of Amma continues to be a mystery. Wikimedia commons
  • OPS was the first top AIADMK leader to allege that no one was allowed access to Amma.
  • Ministers and party leaders had various version of the scenario.
  • Following all this, an inquiry commission was set up to probe the matter.
Sasikala has been alleged of not allowing access to anyone while Amma was in hospital. IANS
Sasikala has been alleged of not allowing access to anyone while Amma was in the hospital. IANS

On Friday, Apollo Hospitals submitted two suitcases packed with documents related to the treatment given to J. Jayalalithaa to an inquiry commission set up to probe her death. The commission was also set up to investigate the circumstances that led to Jayalalithaa’s hospitalization and her treatment.

The commission, headed by retired high court judge Justice Arumugasamy, followed by several ministers and party members alleged that they were not allowed to meet the AIADMK chief while she was in the hospital.

V.K. Sasikala’s advocate Raja Senthurapandian has been ordered by the panel to appear before it on 22nd January.

You may also like: All you need to know about T.T.V Dinakaran

Background

After O Panneerselvam alleged that ‘there’s more’ to Jayalalithaa’s death, what followed was a mirage of statements from several party leaders and ministers. The various version came up regarding the scenario of Amma’s treatment.

Opposition DMK had demanded a CBI inquiry.

OPS’s role

OPS was the first leader who came out with allegations against Sasikala, Wikimedia commons
OPS was the first leader who came out with allegations against Sasikala, Wikimedia commons

O Panneerselvam was the first top AIADMK leader to allege that there’s more to the death of Amma. All of it wasn’t made public, he said. OPS also said he wasn’t allowed to meet Jayalalithaa.

The inquiry commission was set up after the AIADMK merger of EPS and OPS factions.

The inquiry was a pre-condition for the merger set by OPS. This was seen as to move to target Sasikala as she was the only one who was allowed access to Amma, at the hospital.

Panneerselvam had also accused Sasikala of ‘forcing him’ to resign when he was the acting Chief Minister. The picture which came up was, Sasikala is trying to assume power.

Also read: Iron Lady of India: Jayalalithaa was an inspiration for Women

Ministers and party leaders

Observing the differences between the ruling AIADMK leaders, Opposition took advantage to demand a CBI enquiry. Wikimedia commons
Observing the differences between the ruling AIADMK leaders, Opposition took advantage to demand a CBI enquiry. Wikimedia Commons

The inquiry commission was lost in a maze of contradictions as various ministers had various versions of Jayalalithaa’s treatment at Apollo Hospital.

Forest Minister Dindigul Sreenivasan: Sasikala’s family manipulated Jayalalithaa’s treatment and also prevented access to VIP visitors like Arun Jaitley and Rahul Gandhi. This was done to ensure so that the truth about her hospitalization doesn’t come out. Only Sasikala and her family had access to Amma. Even the ministers weren’t allowed.

Tourism Minister Vellamandi N. Natarajan: He repeated the charge. “The truth is that none of us saw Jayalalithaa during that period of hospitalization. We only saw her body when it was brought out of the hospital lift on December 4 night.” said the minister.

Whereas Cooperation Minister Sellur K. Raju differed on the matter. “All of us, ministers, saw Jayalalithaa when she was undergoing treatment at Apollo. This is the truth,” he said.

P Vetrivel, a disqualified MLA from Dinakaran’s camp had released a video in December last year which show Amma resting on her hospital bed and sipping fruit juice while watching TV. He said it’s untrue that no one met Jayalalithaa during her treatment days. Dinakaran claims the video was shot by Sasikala herself.