Bangus road project: Years on, landowners yet to receive compensation

‘Few landowners encroached on the road, Govt awaiting clearance report’
“The government has released the payment of contractors engaged for the construction of the road but the payment of landowners is yet to be released.”
“The government has released the payment of contractors engaged for the construction of the road but the payment of landowners is yet to be released.”File/GK

Kupwara: Scores of landowners in Handwara Saturday said that they were yet to receive the full compensation for the land that was taken by the government for the construction of the road from Chountipora to Bangus.

A group of landowners told Greater Kashmir that although the land was acquired several years ago for the construction of the Bangus road, only 50 percent compensation had been provided to them to date.

“We were promised that within 18 months full payment will be given to us but after the passage of over three years, we have received only 50 percent compensation in two installments. We were provided 20 percent compensation as the first installment followed by 30 percent as the second installment,” said an agitated land owner from Darshpora, Handwara.

“Why is the government reluctant to release our pending compensation? The then Deputy Commissioner Kupwara had promised to release the compensation amount in one go but the authorities have taken us on a ride,” another land owner said.

“The government has released the payment of contractors engaged for the construction of the road but the payment of landowners is yet to be released.”

The land owners said that for the last three years they had been visiting the Roads and Buildings Division Handwara and Additional Deputy Commissioner Handwara to get their genuine grievances redressed but to no avail.

Additional Deputy Commissioner (ADC) Handwara Nazir Ahmad told Greater Kashmir that a few landowners after getting compensation had encroached on the road.

“I have asked the R&B officials to come up with a clearance report following which compensation of the farmers will be released,” he said. “The landowners will be provided the remaining compensation within a couple of days.”

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