Subversion of due process for seeking the consent of communities in land acquisition and resultant land conflicts

Indian laws – the Forest Conservation Act, 1980 along with the Forest Rights Act (FRA), 2006 and the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act (LARR), 2013 – make it mandatory for government bodies and the promoters of projects to obtain the consent of Indigenous people and other communities who hold traditional land rights before acquiring any of their land for large-scale projects. A widespread perception among corporations and India’s bureaucracy is that such consent, and the procedures required for obtaining it, are hindrances to economic development and progress. Through a systematic analysis of over 700 cases of ongoing land conflicts in India, mapped and documented by Land Conflict Watch (LCW), found that conflicts that hold up large projects arise not because consent is sought but due to lack of implementation, and violation or subversion of the consent provisions, where information in the process of seeking consent has been concealed or falsified.