The commerce ministry, which had ordered a probe into the allegations, maintains that the land is not being acquired for the SEZ, which was notified in December 2007. “The land is being acquired for resettlement purposes. Had it been for the SEZ, we could have intervened, saying that compulsory acquisition for zones is not allowed. However, we have advised ONGC to increase the compensation for people who lost land,” said a commerce ministry official.ONGC too claims that the acquisition is not for the zone, but to resettle some temples of Permude village. “The acquired land will fall outside the SEZ which is being developed. Most of the people from whom land was acquired, have been paid (compensation). There are some vested interests who want to create problems for the project,” said A G Pai, Chief Operating Officer, Mangalore SEZ Ltd. He added that people had promised in writing to the company that their land could be acquired for the zone.
Farmers allege forcible land acquisition by Mangalore SEZ
by Rituparna Bhuyan, Business Standard, 01 December, 2008

The Hindu, 14 March 2008

Governance reform key to NREGA success

by Mihir Shah.

Barely two years on, there is a clamour for scrapping the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA). The chorus is led by no less than the Chief Minister of one of India’s most populous and backward States. We live in a strange country. We have fanatics who want to put up barricades to debar “outsiders” from entering our metros.