KAPURTHALA: The Delhi-Katra Expressway and Jamnagar Expressway projects have begun facing opposition in Punjab from farmers whose land is being acquired.
The farmers have complained that most of them would be left with patches of their land on two sides of the elevated expressways even as compensation for the acquisition is inadequate. Another problem is that many farm families have joint holdings in revenue records.
The affected farmers have started organising themselves. The Punjab government is concerned about the low compensation and the matter is being discussed, official sources revealed.
With farmers already protesting against the Centre over the three agri laws, the state government apprehends that the two projects can snowball into a major controversy due to twin factors of low compensation and the expressways cutting through the middle of land holdings.
On Wednesday, farmers uprooted the small cement concrete pillars at Selbrah village in Rampura Phool sub-division of Bathinda put up for demarcation of land to be acquired.
Gurdeep Singh Bhagat of Tibba village in Sultanpur Lodhi, who retired as a school principal, said his family holds land jointly for the last five generations and has not got it demarcated separately in revenue record though temporary divisions exist. “Eight families have a total of 23 acres of land and around 13 acres is set to be acquired for both the expressways. Of the remaining around 10 acres, only around half an acre is on our side,” he said.
Both the expressways will converge at Tibba village in Kapurthala district.
According to Kisan Sangharsh Committee state chief Sukhdev Singh Dhillon, in Santokhpura village of Sangrur basic compensation of Rs 9.7 lakh per acre has been announced and the owner would get a total less than Rs 20 lakh. “This would render many unemployed,” said Prabhdyal Singh of KSC.