Sikkim | Restriction on land sale withdrawn, previous system restored: CM Chamling

Sikkim | Restriction on land sale withdrawn, previous system restored: CM Chamling
GANGTOK, September 21, 2018: Previous provisions of restricting sale and purchase of land within specific communities were withdrawn through an amendment Bill which was passed by the Sikkim Legislative Assembly on 20th September.
The amendment Bill also removes ceiling of land holding that cannot be sold by an individual.
Chief Minister Pawan Chamling had tables the Sikkim Regulation of Transfer of Land (Amendment)Bill 2018 on 19th September.
Replying to the discussions on the amendment Bill and also later in his vote of thanks, Chamling said the amendment Bill was tabled in respect to the wishes of their present requirements. He said the previous land reforms were brought by the government for protection of land of every community and to ensure that no Sikkimese become landless in future.
Earlier in June and July, the Sikkim government had passed two amendments I the Sikkim Regulation of Transfer of Land Act.
In the first amendment I June, the legislation restricted the sale of la d within the specific groups while also mandating that a person who has only minimum of 3 acres of land would not be allowed to sold such land at all in any manner. The communities defined in bill were Limboo and Tamang communities, State and Central OBC, and SC communities.
In July, the bill was further amended restricting sale and purchase of Sherpa land holding among Sherpa community only.
In his address to the Assembly, the Chief Minister said people did not understood the long term rewards of previous land reforms and they were inclined at present to sell their lands. The previous law was made keeping in mind the future of Sikkimese people but did not looked at this aspect, he said. I was informed that more than 4000 land transactions are at hold at the district collector offices, he said.
Chamling said the State government respects the wishes of the people of Sikkim and have restored the land purchase-sale system as it was before. From today onwards, people of Sikkim can sell their land freely like before, he said. He, however, mentioned that a it will not benefit the people of Sikkim in the long run.
In future we will think on bringing this law again after there is deliberation among the people and a public opinion is created, said Chief Minister.
On the Sikkim Anti Drugs (Amendment) Bill 2018 which was passed by the House on 20th September, Chief Minister said it was a historic legislation which decriminalizes drug abuse and encourages the drug abusers to come out in the open for medical treatment.
In the previous Act, the drug abusers were treated as criminals with stringent penalties including imprisonment and dismissal from services but it has a negative impact, said Chamling. He pointed out that families starting hiding their members who were into drug abuse to protect them.
We have amended the Act so that drug abusers are taken ad criminals but as people suffering from a disease and that they can be treated, said Chamling. There are provisions for medical and psychological treatment for such persons In the new amendment bill, he said.
Another objectives is to encourage families not to hide their members who are into drug and being them out in the open and for medical treatment and eventually make Sikkim drug-free State, said the Chief Minister.
At the same time, we have introduced stringent punishments for those peddling drugs, said Chamling. He said the amendment Bill has become the talk of the country as it decriminalizes drug abuse.
The House also passed the Sikkim Goods and Services Tax (amendment) Bill 2018 and the Sikkim Lokayukta (Amendment) Bill 2018. The second Supplementary Demands for Grants for 2018-19 was also passed by the House.
With Sikkim Chronicle inputs

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