State to punish paddy land devastators

Pothashang News Service : Imphal, February 28, 2018: Manipur government has announced to punish those who violate the Manipur Conservation of Paddy Land and Wet land Act, 2014 in the valley areas of the state by effectively executing it immediately to punish paddy land devastators   .

The act was enacted to conserve the paddy land and wet land and to restrict the conversion or reclamation thereof inorder to promote agricultural growth in the state.

Revenue minister Karam Shyam addressing the reporters at his office said the act even though enacted in September 2014, has not been effectively implemented. The concerned state officials including revenue secretary and its deputy secretary with the deputy commissioners of valley district and agriculture director have decided to make the act significant.

The government has decided to effectively implement with actions from tomorrow responding on the reports collected by monitoring committees. Accordingly the violators of the act will be punished, added the minister.

Deputy revenue secretary, Y. Rajen said under section 18 of the act a landowner who violates the act may be convicted for 3 to 5 years imprisonment and penalty of Rs 50,000 to Rs. 2 lakhs in addition.

Saying that sections of people including farmers have been raising their voice to save paddy lands from conversion, Shyam sought cooperation from the people in taking up the steps meant for future prosperity.

According to horticulture and agriculture department Manipur has 1, 97, 000 hectares of arable land. The minister said many awareness campaigns will be taken up in connection to save agricultural land and to stop destruction of paddy fields. The act has the power to put the act violators behind bars and pay fines, added the minister.

Rajen said as par the act the land owners can erect residential building on area measuring 0.10 acre in urban and 0.20 acre in rural, provided the possessor of the land or his family does not own a suitable land for the purpose. If the paddy land is converted for constructions meant for public welfare the act will be not be applied, he added.

The illegal conversion of the land will be monitored by local level committees, district level committees and finally the state level committee.

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