New Delhi, Feb 23: Hinting at the government's intent to seek a consensus on passing the Land Acquisition Bill, President Pranab Mukherjee on Monday said, the interest of farmers and land owners has been protected in the fine-tuning of the bill.
"Protecting the interest of the farmers, their right to fair compensation, rehabilitation, resettlement and financial compensation has been refined," Mukherjee told the joint sitting of Parliament on the opening day of the budget session.
"Land acquisition is required for critical public projects like rural hospitals and schools," he added.
In December, by an executive ordinance the government made significant changes in the Land Acquisition Act, including removal of a consent clause for acquiring land for purposes of industrial corridors, public-private partnership projects, rural infrastructure, affordable housing and defence.
The Bill is likely to be introduced in the ongoing session to replace the ordinance.
Social activist Anna Hazare has called for a two-day agitation against the law, beginning on Monday. Protests are also planned by Congress under its Vice President Rahul Gandhi on February 25. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has also decided to support Hazare's protest.
The Congress party has also decided to oppose the law in Parliament.