Compensation denied to project canal evacuees
Officials who procured land for construction of a canal under the Handri-Neeva Sujala Sravanti (HNSS) project at Gargeyapuram village in the mandal, refused to pay compensation for about 50 acres, saying that it was government land. Mr Ravindra Reddy, a farmer, said their elders had purchased about 50 acres in the village about 40 years ago. He said officials had given pattadar passbooks for the lands and they had taken bank loans using them. Mr Ravindra Reddy said eight other farmers were also cultivating the land. He said officials had paid Rs 95,000 per acre as compensation to other farmers in the village whose lands were acquired. Mr Ravindra Reddy said officials had promised to give them similar compensation and after three years told them that no compensation would be given. He said farmers, who were cultivating the lands, had no other land and didn't know how to repay their bank loans. Mr Ravindra Reddy said they had been paying land tax for the lands for the last 40 years. He said officials were also refusing to pay compensation being given to those cultivating government land to them. Mr Ravindra Reddy said they would search for alternate livelihood if compensation was paid to them and warned that they would have to commit suicide along with their family members if aid was denied.