New Delhi, Feb 8 (IANS): A total of 1,457 cases are pending in various high courts, related to compensation for land acquisition against the government or the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) wherein no response could so far be filed, the Rajya Sabha was told on Wednesday.
Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari, in a written reply at the Rajya Sabha, said: "There is no delay in filing of replies. Therefore, the question of fixing responsibility does not arise."
"Instructions have been issued to all concerned officers to file the response on behalf of the government or NHAI within the prescribed time limit in the matters pending before the High Courts," he added.
The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has issued instructions and guidelines regarding timely handling of court cases in which it has been instructed that the concerned field office of the agency involved in the development and maintenance of national highways, shall file a suitable counter affidavit in court cases, well before the date of hearing of the case before the court and defend the case on behalf of the Central government, said the reply.
The Ministry said that many efforts have been taken for resolution of land acquisition compensation disputes. It includes introduction of BhoomiRashi portal for online submission of LA notification for reducing the time in publication and payment of compensation.
The efforts in this regard also include regular meetings with state governments for speedy land acquisition and timely disbursement of compensation.