The Telegraph
Saturday , January 26 , 2013
Since 1st March, 1999
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Land rights rider in biz revival plan

- More lucrative offers await investors

Patna, Jan. 25: The ambitious “Aao Bihar” scheme would soon be relaunched with more rights for the landowners.

The project — to lure industrialists in the land-locked state — was launched around two years ago. However, success eluded the scheme as most of the landowners refused to part with their plots.

Deepak Kumar Singh, the managing director of Bihar Industrial Area Development Authority (BIADA), said the government was contemplating a plan under which landowners could have the right of ownership of their plots and “private industrial areas” could be set up there. “It is a fact that not much follow-up was done on the scheme. But the government is serious enough and the district magistrates (DMs) have been contacted for the purpose. In addition to this, the government will chalk out a plan and proper advertisements will be published as a first step towards its revival. The scheme needs to be advertised in a proper way,” he said.

According to the earlier plan, the government would not play any role in negotiating the rate of the land and it would be decided by the landowners. To ensure that the investors know the prices of the land well in advance, the scheme also talked of procuring price details from the landowners.

Since the scheme was launched, there have been just two landowners who showed interest. Industry department sources said there were cases in which a landowner was ready to provide their land for industrial purposes but did not want that the right of ownership to go.

“In Bihar, people are generally against selling of their land. Now, the government is thinking to set up private industrial areas in which the ownership rests with the landowner. The government can develop the basic infrastructure of the land taking an initi ative and the landowners can also have a share of profits too. At present, a lot of thought is being given on the revival of the project and things will take a concrete shape soon,” a department official said.