Citizens' Issues
Enhanced NOIDA land compensation not precedent for future, says SC
The Supreme Court has said that the increased compensation of 64.7 percent coupled with allotment of developed land to the extent of 10 percent of the land acquired from each land owner in NOIDA and Greater NIOIDA would not be treated as a precedent for the award of such compensation for future acquisitions.
 
".. we make it clear that directions of the (Allahabad) high court are given in the a unique and peculiar/specific background and, therefore, it would not form precedent for future cases," said a bench of Chief Justice H.L.Dattu, Justice A.K.Sikri and Justice Arun Mishra in their reasoned judgment in respect of which brief orders were pronounced on May 14.
 
Though the operative part of the court's verdict was pronounced in the court on May 14 itself but the full judgment was made available only on Tuesday.
 
In the instant case the full bench of Allahabad High Court, by its order of October 21, 2011, while quashing the acquisition of land in 61 villages falling in Noida and Greater NOIDA, had allowed the NOIDA authority to continue to retain the acquired land instead of restoring ownership to the original land owners. They instead received 64.7 percent enhancement in compensations and farmers getting 10 percent of the developed land subject to a maximum of 2,500 square metres.
 
The apex court noted that farmers whose land was acquired for industrial purposes by invoking emergency provisions were not aggrieved by the manner that the acquisition was undertaken by the NOIDA authority, but a large portion of the land acquired was sought to be given away to the builders for development of the land as residential.
 
Referring to the earlier verdicts, it said that the argument of the farmers that giving away of the land to the private developers for construction of residential units gave them the fresh cause of action, "gets dented to a great extent".
 
Invoking the urgency clause, the NOIDA authority had in 2008 acquired 589.188 hectares of land in NOIDA and Greater NOIDA in Dadri sub-division) of Gautam Budha Nagar in Uttar Pradesh.
 
NOIDA authority had acquired land for industrial purposes but later it changed the land use in respect of a large chunk of it for residential purposes and gave it to builders.

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SC moved to know income, expenditures of political parties
The Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) has moved the Supreme Court seeking directions to the Congress, the BJP, the CPI-M, the CPI, the NCP and the BSP to disclose the complete details of their income as well as expenditure.
 
The PIL by the ADR along with RTI activist Subhash Chandra Agrawal has also sought declaration that all the national and regional political parties are public authorities under the Right to Information Act, 2005 and were accountable under two orders of the Central Information Commissioner of June 2013 and March 2015.
 
Besides seeking the complete details of income and expenditure of the national and regional political outfits, the PIL has sought complete details of donations and funding received by them and the names of the donors making donations to them and to electoral trusts.
 
The Central Information Commission by its June 3, 2013 order had said that six political parties that included the Congress, the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Communist Party of India-Marxist, the Communist Party of India, the Nationalist Congress Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party were public authorities under the RTI and were obliged to disclose information sought under it.
 
In the PIL, the petitioners have sought to highlight the practice wherein political parties in power have a significant de facto control over legislatures and executive through their elected members.
 
It said that schedule 10 of the constitution makes it compulsory for the elected members of legislatures to toe the party line, failing which they stand to suffer disqualification from the membership of the legislatures either in parliament or state assemblies.
 
However, at the same time "important information about political parties, their income, expenditure, complete details of donors are not disclosed by political parties for public scrutiny", the PIL said describing disclosure of such information as the right of information of an average voter.
 
Contending that the political parties were integral to parliamentary democracy as it is they that form the government and run the governance, the PIL referred to the Law Commission's 170th report by which it had recommended transparency in the functioning of political parties specially focusing on their internal democracy, financial transparency and accountability in their working.

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Ponzi scam: Sudipta Sen's close aide arrested
A close aide of ponzi scam tainted Saradha group chief Sudipta Sen, was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation from the bustling Sealdah station here on Tuesday, an agency official said.
 
Arindam Das, alias Bumba, was alleged to be mentoring the "illegal" operations of the Saradha group in the South 24 Parganas district of West Bengal, a CBI spokesman said.
 
Das was earlier arrested in mid 2013 when the ponzi farm scam came to light, but got bail after a month.
 
He had gone into hiding since August 2014 after CBI had called him for examination.
 
Later in the day, Das was presented in court, which sent him to CBI custody for seven days.

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