Union Minister Nitin Gadkari today asked political parties not to mix politics with growth while emphasising that land acquisition is must for development and employment generation.
The Minister of Road, Transport and Highways also said that industrialists need to change their approach towards land acquisition and farmers must be compensated adequately as “they are also part and parcel of the development process”.
Gadkari also said that a new economic approach in infrastructure development is needed while ensuring adequate compensation to people whose land is acquired for projects.
Explaining his concept of new economic growth, he said when he was a minister in Maharasthra, he had taken Rs 10 crore from the state government and raised Rs 2,000 crore from the capital market and completed projects worth Rs 8000 crore.
“Time has come for the country to think about a new economic approach which aims for eradication of poverty, increased productivity and generating employment and more per capita income. I am not talking about politics. But if you want to construct roads and ports, land is required”.
“… If you need land, somewhere you have to acquire. We cannot have developmemnt without that’, he said.
He was speaking at the foundation stone laying ceremony of a bypass at nearby Kazhakkoottam and sanctioning projects worth Rs 34,000 crore to develop 1,065 km roads in the state.
Gadkari said there is a ‘psychology’ among industrialists. “They invest Rs 2,000 crore for a project, pay for machinery, plants and for other things. So they do not bother about land, which they want from government”.
“This was not an appropriate approach. Land owners should be adequately compensated for their land as they are also part and parcel of the development process,” he said.
“But at the same time we have to find a way out and how we can accelerate the economic growth of the country”.
On the Vizhinjam International Deepwater Seaport project, the contract for which was won by Adani Group, he said discussions were going on in Kerala on the project.
“I do not know your (state’s) politics. A journalist from Kerala in New Delhi asked me that Adani, your partyman is going to build a port in Kerala.I rejected it. We have no relation with Adani or Ambani. If you want to build a port, you take it or reject it’.