On September 18, 2018, around 1000 farmers submitted affidavits in the Gujarat High Court opposing the proposed Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project.
A division bench of Chief Justice R Subhash Reddy and Justice V M Pancholi is already hearing five petitions challenging the land acquisition process for the high-speed rail project.
Besides these petitioners, 1000 farmers submitted separate affidavits in the Gujarat High Court to highlight the plight of many more cultivators that are affected by the Centre's ambitious Rs. 1.10 lakh crore bullet train project.
In the affidavit, the affected farmers from various districts of Gujarat, from where the bullet train route will pass, stated that they do not want acquisition of their land for the project.
Pointing out to the existing land acquisition proceedings, the farmers said that it is contrary to the guidelines of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) that has provided soft loan to the Indian government for the project.
Further, the farmers alleged that the Gujarat government diluted the Land Acquisition Act 2013 after Japan entered into a contract with India for the bullet train in September 2015.
They told the court that the government didn’t take their consent nor consulted them before initiating the land acquisition. Moreover, the social impact assessment for rehabilitation and resettlement is also not being discussed by the government.
The bullet train project was launched in September 2017 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe.
For the project, around 1,400 hectares of land will be acquired in Gujarat and Maharashtra, 1,120 hectares of which is privately owned. Around 6,000 land owners will have to be compensated.