Plans for India’s first bullet train, a $17-billion-dollar project, have sparked a debate on the definition of “public purpose” for land acquisitions which have become increasingly contentious.
The 500-km- (310-mile-) long high-speed rail link promises to cut travel time between the financial hub of Mumbai and the industrial city of Ahmedabad in Gujarat state by more than half to under three hours.
The project, inaugurated earlier this month, will need about 825 hectares (2,000 acres) of land. The government has said it will complete the line by 2022, even as farmers along the proposed route held protests against giving up their land.
They may have little say in the matter, as the state has a legal right to take private property for public purposes. Read More…