Thursday, October 10, 2019

Sabari airport plan gets rolling

Thiruvananthapuram: A meeting chaired by chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Wednesday decided to go ahead with the acquisition of Cheruvally Estate for constructing a greenfield airport to cater to Sabarimala devotees.
According to top government sources, Cheruvally Estate, the ownership of which is currently in dispute between that government and Gospel for Asia, an evangelist organisation led by Bishop K P Yohannan, will be acquired under the relevant Section 77 of the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, under which the government is empowered to acquire land for public projects.
Top government sources said that if the land is acquired, the compensation as stipulated under the Act will not be given to the Gospel for Asia, which is currently holding the land, as the government is still fighting the case for the legal ownership of the estate land. Cheruvalli Estate is one among those estates that were sold by Harrisons Malayalam Limited in 2005. Special officer M G Rajamanickam, who was appointed for resuming the government land from HML, had taken over the estate in the government’s possession, but the Supreme Court had ruled in favour of the HML.

The government has asked all the district collectors (HML holds land in eight districts) to file civil suit in the respective local courts within the jurisdiction of which the land is situated, claiming the ownership of the land. The civil suit will now decide the fate of 76,769acre, which are currently with the company and others who have purchased land from the company or from its predecessor companies situated in Kollam, Pathanamthitta, Idukki, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Kozhikode and Wayanad. “The compensation as per the Act will be remitted in the court, and the final award of compensation will be subject to the verdict of the court,” sources said.
10/10/19 Times of India
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