Sanjoy Chakravorty

in The Price of Land

Published in print February 2013 | ISBN: 9780198089544
Published online May 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780199082438 | DOI:

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This chapter identifies the agents or actors in contemporary land acquisition processes: the traditional buyers (typically the state) and sellers, and the new agents: political parties and civil society. Three issues are of critical importance. First, the extreme and increasing level of fragmentation of agricultural land, ranging from the greatest fragmentation (in Kerala, Bihar, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu) to the least (in Punjab, Rajasthan, Haryana, Gujarat, and Madhya Pradesh). Second, the increasing and inconsistent engagement of political parties (from the Congress and BJP to the Leftist and regional parties) in acquisition processes—favouring acquisition where they have power and resisting it where they do not. Third, the increasing and pivotal role played by a range of civil society organizations (operating at multiple scales, from local and project-specific to international), most critically as information agents that have removed the past information asymmetries that enabled the past injustices.

Keywords: land fragmentation; landholding size; agricultural census; stakeholders; political parties; Congress; Bharatiya Janata Party; Communist parties; civil society; Narmada Bachao Andolan

Chapter.  6241 words. 

Subjects: Public Economics

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