Jayalalithaa asks Modi to rescind notification on GAIL project
Asking the Centre to rescind notification on GAIL gas pipeline passing through Tamil Nadu, Chief Minister Jayalalithaa has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking changes in the Central law to provide for social impact assessment for the project.
In a letter to Mr. Modi, Ms. Jayalalithaa said the proposed alignment would cause ?irreparable damage? to Erode, Tirupur, Coimbatore, Namakkal, Dharmapuri, Krishnagiri and Salem districts through which the Kochi- Kuttanad -Mangaluru-Bengaluru gas pipeline would traverse.
Referring to the Supreme Court ruling against the State government?s 2013 order asking GAIL to stop the project on its present alignment, she said the apex court had also made it clear that the Centre was the ?competent government? on this matter.
?Since the competent government under the relevant Act is the Central government, the Government of India may rescind the notifications, issued under the Petroleum and Minerals Pipelines (Acquisition of Right of User) Act, 1962, for the GAIL pipeline in Tamil Nadu,? she said.
?The Central government is empowered to withdraw the notification under Section 93 of Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013, read with Section 18 of the Petroleum and Minerals Pipelines (Acquisition of Right of User in Land) Act, 1962,? the Chief Minister said.
Further, as per Proviso (a) to Section 7 (i) of the Petroleum and Minerals Act, 1962, it was ?mandated? that no pipeline shall be laid under lands, which were used for residential purposes or near such houses or with permanent structures, she said in the letter.
Referring to Petroleum and Minerals Act, 1962, she said it was one of the 13 Central Acts, which had been exempted from the requirement of carrying out Social Impact Assessment under the UPA?s 2013 Land Acquisition Act.
The Petroleum and Minerals Act was ?technically? not a Land Acquisition Act ?but only provides for right to use the land for laying pipelines for petroleum products,? she said.