Proposed MSME Ordinance Won’t Impact Indigenous Land Rights, Says Assam

Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal had held a meeting on July 7 over the MSME ordinance issue.


With growing concerns in Assam over the proposed micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) ordinance overriding the rights of indigenous communities to their agricultural land, the Assam government on Thursday clarified that it is going to add provision in the draft MSME Ordinance that all the provisions of the Assam Agricultural Land (Regulation of Reclassification and Transfer for Non-Agricultural Purpose) Act, 2015 will have to be followed for setting up of any MSME.

The government has also clarified that no exemption will be given under the Act or any land-related Act for any business initiative or business enterprise.

The government also added that earlier there was a provision that after getting the acknowledgement certificate, agricultural land was proposed to be deemed converted for non-agriculture purposes to set up an industry.

According to a government news release, it has now been decided that no such exemption will be given.

It has also been clarified by Assam Industries Minister Chandramohan Patowary that the business enterprises will have to take all the permission, clearance and approval related to land before starting any industry.

This was decided in a crucial meeting chaired by Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on July 7 to discuss the provisions of the draft ordinance related to use of land. Ramesh Chandra Borpatra Gohain, Advocate General attended the meeting, official sources added.

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