New Delhi: In a step that could propel reforms on fast track, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday approved relaxations in the transfer policy for the government land for infrastructure projects. All land transfer from ministries to PSUs has also been allowed.
This will now ensure that there is no procedural delay in acquiring government-owned land for infrastructure projects. There will be no Cabinet approval required for transfer of government-owned land for infrastructure use.
UPA ally TMC is expected to provide stiff opposition as it has been vehemently against the government's intervention on land transfers.
Several projects for airports and highways have been held up in the past because of strict land transfer policy.
Early last year, a ban had been imposed on all transfer of government owned lands to any entity except in cases where land was to be transferred from one government department to another.
The Prime Minister has now relaxed the ban for certain categories of projects by allowing land alienation for:
-All cases of land transfer from Ministries to statutory authorities or PSUs will be allowed, subject to the requirements of normal Government of India Rules.
-All cases of land transfer on lease or rent or license to a concessionaire which have been appraised through the PPPAC route and approved by the Finance Minister or by the Ministers concerned or by the Cabinet, as the case may be, depending upon the value of the project.
-Development and use of railway land by Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA) as per provisions of Railways Amendment Act, 2005 and the Rules framed thereunder and in accordance with the prevalent policies and guidelines of the Railway Ministry and the Government.
This would speed up the award of PPP projects from this month onwards significantly.