Foreigners buying agricultural land in Goa

Foreigners buying agricultural land in Goa

Tiracol, says Ramakant Kahalp, Chairman of Law Commission of Goa, is just one example of how land in Goa is being taken over by real estate sharks from outside the state who seems to be interested in grabbing lands in one of the most happening cities of the country.

“In the absence of a law, even agricultural lands and specially orchard properties are being bought by rich non-Goans who deliberately keep the land fallow for speculative reasons,” he says.

Foreigners, too, have managed to buy farm land in Goa, knowing that with the right connections, it can be easily converted for residential and commercial use.

The Goa Land Conservation and Management Bill proposed by the Law Commission would go a long way to protect agricultural properties in the tourist state, the former union law minister says.

“Karnataka, Maharashtra and most other states have laws that don’t allow the transfer of agricultural properties to those who are not farmers, why not Goa?” Khalap asks.

So far, 15 reports submitted by the commission to the state government – including a draft bill on land acquisition – have been put in cold storage. Khalap admits that political will to act is lacking. “We have to do our job, so we make these recommendations to the government in the best interests of the state.”

He hopes the draft bill to stop the sale of farmland will be introduced in the October session of the Goa assembly.