Land Reform Law and Implementation in West Bengal: Lessons and Recommendations
Rural Development Institute Report, No. 112, December 2001
72 Pages Posted: 31 Oct 2005
It is widely acknowledged that West Bengal's land reforms have had a positive impact on agricultural production, poverty alleviation, and economic growth, although the extent of the impact and the causation is a matter of some controversy. What is clear is that West Bengal, after seriously implementing land reforms, has made remarkable progress in agricultural growth and in some aspects of poverty alleviation. This report is an attempt to distill lessons from West Bengal's land reform experience, particularly the land reform legislation and the means and methods by which the law was (and is) implemented. The report is based upon a review and analysis of the legislation, a review of the secondary literature including other field studies, and rapid appraisal field research in three districts of West Bengal (Medinipur, Maldah, and Birbhum). It identifies both numerous positive provisions that might serve as models for other states, as well as potential problems that, if corrected, could further improve West Bengal's land reform legislation.
Keywords: Land Reform, Property Law, Rural Poverty, Agriculture, West Bengal
JEL Classification: Q15, I31, K11, O13, R00
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation
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By Robin Mearns