PM resolves major land transfer bottleneck
New Delhi, Aug 2 (IANS) In a move Thursday to ensure that infrastructure projects are not held up by procedural delays, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh approved relaxations in the land transfer policy of the government for government-owned lands.
A 2011 ban on all transfer of government owned lands has now been relaxed by allowing land alienation for three categories of projects.
The first category is of land transfers from ministries to statutory authorities or public sector units, which are now to be allowed, subject to the requirements of normal government rules.
The second category is of transfers on lease or rent or license to a concessionaire which have been appraised through the Public Private Partnership Approval Committee (PPPAC) route and approved by the finance minister or by the ministers concerned, or by the Cabinet.
The last group concerns development and use of railway land by the Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA).
The 2011 ban on all transfers of government owned lands to any entity except to another government department meant that any project which required alienation of land either through lease, license or rent had to seek specific approval of the Cabinet.
This was leading to long delays in awarding concessions for infrastructure projects, particularly public-private-partnership (PPP) projects.
All PPP infrastructure projects like roads, railways, ports and civil aviation have some element of land alienation as the project is often built on government owned land.
The government continues to own the land which is leased or licensed out.
The relaxations approved by the prime minister would significantly speed up the award of PPP projects.
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