Manipulation of revenue records to be a thing of the past

Telangana to conduct resurvey of farm land soon

Telangana government is all set to embark on a challenging task of cleaning up land records and bring in authenticity in land ownership in all the revenue villages in the State.

Given the confusion, anomalies over the boundaries, ownership issues that plague the agricultural lands in Telangana because of different legacies and systems that existed in the British administered State, later under Nizam rule, the State government has decided to resurvey the agricultural land based on the present holdings and secure them with authentic data after verification on ground. Any existing disputes will be recorded subject to legal outcome.

Massive survey

As announced by the Chief Minister K.Chandrasekhar Rao on Independence Day, highly placed sources said that the massive survey involving is proposed to be completed in four to six months. “Ideally we want to complete it by year-end,” they added.

A committee of senior officials, including Collectors, has been looking into the practical issues given the magnitude of the exercise. Some pilot projects may be taken up to finalise procedural changes, evolve guidelines, and if necessary bring a new Act to give legal sanctity to the entire process.

The survey process expected to cost ₹500 crore to ₹800 crore may be outsourced to some agency or the revenue department itself may do it. The process will be on the lines of comprehensive household survey that was carried out on a single day across the State to gather household data. State government is hopeful of tapping Central funds for the digitisation of records even if not for the survey process.

This is not the first time, though the government is contemplating to set right the anomalies in land records. Why a land survey afresh ? The objective is to clean up the mess in the land records system as there are thousands of cases, litigations due to lack of authentic records, sources disclose.

“For instance, even after Inam lands were abolished in Telangana, people still make all sorts of claims. So the government decided to resurvey the whole land based on present holdings. This will also involve carrying out mutations as a result of sales, gift deeds, succession, division within the family. The anomalies in the records have to be addressed through a transparent process as they have been giving rise to litigations, boundary disputes, confusion and scope for corruption,” the sources said.

“At present, we have webland that has information about land owner, pattadar, cultivator. But unfortunately webland and manual records are poles apart due to discrepancies in recording the data”, they say.

Earlier revenue records had historical perspective and in the present day world they lost that relevance. Now, we need simplified accounts and they require rationalisation of the manner in which the accounts are retained, held, the person who writes these accounts. Sometimes, persons write wrong pahani, take money and put some one else’s name and play mischief.

Hopefully, the new system will put an end to these manipulations and make it fool-proof by giving responsibility to some one with authority.

Irregularities galore

As there is no transparency in the present system, people find it difficult to get their land surveyed, boundaries fixed, sub-division record created. Land owners feel harassed as a lot of irregularities had been taking place in fixing the boundaries by some surveyors and random survey numbers being created. A piece meal solution is not possible to cleanse the system. A comprehensive land survey has to be taken up afresh and there is also need to simplify the revenue records, explain officials.

Automatic mutation

Land survey is a quasi judicial process. Notices will be issued, objections will be heard and disposed of in the gram sabhas. The new system ensures that the mutations are done automatically by the registrar himself once a new transaction is made. When a land owner dies, death certificate is furnished, it is the MRO’s responsibility to make the changes in the records, sources revealed.

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Printable version | May 27, 2020 3:27:42 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/manipulation-of-revenue-records-to-be-a-thing-of-the-past/article19526754.ece

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