The Godrej Group on Monday moved the Bombay High Court against the Centre’s plan to acquire land for the bullet train project, which the conglomerate says will include the procurement of its property in Mumbai’s Vikhroli area, PTI reported.
The firm asked the court to tweak the project’s alignment to exclude its property, which is valued at over Rs 500 crore. If Godrej does not agree to the acquisition, the authorities will either have to change the track alignment or forcibly procure the land, Business Standard reported. The conglomerate’s land is proposed to be used as an entry to the underground section of the project.
The court will hear the petition on July 31.
The elevated bullet train line is a major Bharatiya Janata Party government campaign promise, set to be built at a cost of Rs 1.1 lakh crore with the Japanese government’s assistance. The 508-km rail route will cut through 866 hectares of land in Gujarat, Maharashtra and the Union territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli, affecting an estimated 312 villages along the way.
A spokesperson for the National High Speed Rail Corporation Limited, the public-private joint venture in charge of the project, told Scroll.in that between 5,000 and 6,000 persons are expected to be affected by the project across all districts along the entire route. But its internal report, available at the Valsad collector’s office, claims there are 1,695 project-affected households in Valsad district alone. The project will also claim more than 80,400 trees across Gujarat, in addition to trees in Maharashtra’s forested districts of Thane and Palghar. Farmers believe this is just a conservative estimate.