Weak legal guidelines, agrarian distress reducing farmland in the country
Agrarian distress and politico-land mafia nexus in Jammu and Kashmir leave a ‘devastating path’ in the back of conversion of agricultural land for non-agricultural functions maintained at an alarming rate price, making the nation, also, depending on meals imports to feed its 1.25-crore populace.
Keeping with government records, approximately 50,585 hectares (10 lakh canals) of fertile cultivable land turned converted into residential and industrial assets inside the state all through the past one decade on my own. The trend continues, without enforcement of any laws to stop this kind of exercise.
Commercial and home colonies are developing throughout villages and cities of J&K. The scenario is more catastrophic within the capital cities of Jammu and Srinagar, which might be eating up land in their surrounding villages to meet the needs of the increasing populace and improvement desires.
Land Revenue Act and J&K Agrarian Reforms Act, Prohibition on Conversion of Land, and Alienation of Orchards Act have been misused. The authorities have failed to test the blatant violation as the sales department, the model employer to enforce the laws, district administrations, and policymakers have intentionally grown to become a blind eye towards arresting such practices.
In 2011, The J&K Prohibition on Conversion of Agricultural Land for Non- Agricultural Purposes Act Bill turned into delivered with the aid of the then Agriculture Minister in Congress-NC government, Ghulam Hassan Mir, to make bureaucrats and civil servants accountable for their respective regions. The Bill was met with resistance and became no longer handed via the Legislature. It turned into cited a pick out committee but got lapsed after the brand new PDP-BJP authorities took over the reins in 2015.
“Till bureaucrats and politicians aren’t made responsible, conversion cannot be stopped. I don’t want to call everyone, but the Bill turned into by no means taken seriously by my colleagues, MLAs, or even ministers. Existing legal guidelines have a lot of loopholes”, stated the previous Agriculture Minister.
Senior officers within the agriculture branch discovered that the conversion would be more as, in most instances, the land has been declared barren in sales files, making it easy for the land mafia to avoid the rules.
“Shrinking farmland is contributing in the direction of the nation’s dependence on imports of meal grain to satisfy necessities. It has even affected the horticulture quarter”, said Altaf Aijaz Andrabi, director of agriculture, Kashmir.
According to the agriculture branch’s evaluation, the nation is predicted to face a foodgrain deficit of as much as 50 in keeping with cent via 2030-31. Shrinking farmland should further get worse in the state of affairs.
“There is simple money in promoting land. The younger generation in rural areas no longer want to take pleasure in farming anymore because of fewer returns and the government’s failure to introduce technology in manufacturing. Big developers and belongings sellers are taking gain of the agrarian distress to gather land. Developmental projects have also accelerated the land fees”, stated Tejinder Singh, a farm activist.
Alarmed through the violation of rules, previous PDP-BJP authorities ordered all deputy commissioners in J&K to implement the prevailing rules strictly, but it remained just rhetoric.