Shimla: Toughening its stand on touchy land issues, opposition congress on Saturday said that even though the ruling party had got the HP Ceiling of Land Holdings (Amendment) Bill, 2011 referred to a select committee of the Vidhan Sabha, they would not be party to it.
Party spokesman Kuldeep Pathania told reporters that congress would oppose this bill at all costs. â€œCongress will not be party to Vidhan Sabha select committee that will discuss this amendment,â€ he said.
â€œIt is a blatant attempt to legalize the sale of land in violation of ceiling laws done to non-Himachalis, to which we cannot be a party,â€ he added.
He said land was a scare resource for the state which YS Parmar the founder chief minister of the hill state realized early and had the foresight to bind the state by enacting in not permitting its sale.
Exemptions for industry and hydel projects have already been provided for in the ceiling law and there was no need for anymore amendments, said the spokesman.
He said that information laid in the house showed that in about four years this government had allowed sale of land to 1004 non-Himachalis.
Clearly a land mafia has been created in the state by the BJP government because in some cases permission for sale of as much as 900 bighaâ€™s of land has been permitted, he said.
The spokesman also pointed out that though it had been reported in the media that the government was acquiring Bantony Estate, which is close to The Mall Road, but in response to a question in the Vidhan Sabha the government has stated that acquisition proceedings had not been started.
Critical of the government Eco-tourism initiative, Pathania said that the government admitted in the house that of the 9 eco-tourism units functioning violations had taken place in as many as 7 of them.