The Goa Restriction on transfer of Agricultural Land Bill has been defended by the Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant, claiming it will save the coastal state’s paddy fields from being taken over by buyers for non-agriculture purposes.
“We have drafted the bill keeping the interest of people of Goa at heart. That is why after the Goa Agriculture Tenancy Act, this is the second such bill in the last 60 years enacted by the state to safeguard the paddy fields,” Sawant said.
He further said that this bill will restrict people from places like Delhi and other states from purchasing the paddy fields in Goa and “converting” them. “The bill clearly restricts the sale of paddy fields for non-agriculture purposes,” he said adding that non-agriculturists can purchase the land for agriculture purposes, but they will have to utilise it within three years or else it would be taken over by the government.
The legislation seeks to impose restrictions on the transfer of agricultural land to preserve and protect paddy cultivation.
The bill was passed in the Goa Assembly on March 31, the last day of the recently concluded session, even as the opposition parties had raised an objection to it.