Kolkata: To discourage the tendency of keeping land granted for setting up industries unused for an indefinite period, the West Bengal government will be amending the state’s existing land holding rules.
Under the amended rule, the state government will have the power to take back land granted for industry in case the land recipient keeps the land used for an indefinite period without citing genuine reasons for doing so. A decision on this count was taken at a meeting of the state cabinet at the state Secretariat ‘Nabanna’ here on Wednesday.
Sources said that industrialists taking land on a 99-year lease for setting up industries have to pay a price which is much lower than the existing market rate.
“However, even after taking that land on a 99-year lease, many industrialists keep that land unused without setting up any industry. Once the land holding rules are amended, the state government will have the authority to convert that 99-year lease land into owned for freehold land. Then the industrialist concerned will have to either purchase that entire unused land at the existing market rate or return that unused land to the state government,” a member of the state cabinet said.
In case, he added, the industrialist concerned returns that leased land to the state government, the latter will be able to allot that land to any other industrial house. “If the industrialist concerned decides to purchase that entire land at existing market rate, it will add to the state government exchequer,” he said.
At the same time, sources from the cabinet said, a decision to award the industrialists or businessman completing their projects in time, was also taken at the meeting of the state cabinet on Wednesday.