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High level panel recommends review of SEZ Act

A high level committee panel recommends review of SEZ Act and asked the government to review the following concerns. The government should ban transfer of common property and agricultural land * Concerns of tribals and farmers remain unattended under the SEZ Act * The status of ‘deemed foreign territory’ to SEZs stands to undermine the institutions set up under Panchayats (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996 and other local governance bodies. The Act says that grievances related to the SEZs can only be filed with courts designated by the respective state governments, which will only be for trials related to civil and other matters of SEZ. So other court can try a case unless it goes through the designated court first. “Building of a physical boundary around the SEZ and restricting entry to authorised persons only mean it would be difficult for any individual or civil society groups and independent agencies to enter the area without prior approval of the development commissioner,”

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