Visakhapatnam

House owners affected by 22A norms pin high hopes on govt.

Troubled land: Many house owners in Visakhapatnam are in a state of flux after their properties, which they purchased decades ago, were put on the 22A list.  

In 2014, the then TDP government, based on a High Court order, passed a Government Order (G.O.) that all lands (government lands) that have been encroached upon and fall in the 22A list, be notified and stopped from further registration.

The registration is subject to de-notification and payment of regularisation fee to the government, the order had said, putting many house owners in Visakhapatnam in a state of flux as the house site or apartment that they purchased decades ago have been notified under this 22A watch list.

“I purchased my apartment from a builder in Madhavadhara in 2012. Now, I want to sell it or mortgage it for a loan to fund my daughter’s wedding. But I am unable to do so for the land has been notified under 22A,” says Mr. Ramana Rao, a retired Central government employee.

In many cases, many land, under the 22A list now, have changed hands at least three to four times, since the ULC Act came into force in 1976. “For a common man, getting a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the Revenue Department is quite a task. Many house owners have been running from pillar to post for the last two years. It is a very cumbersome process and many a times the staff do not have any clarity on this issue,” says former president of CREDAI, P. Koteswara Rao.

The 22A issue is complicated and it has many sub-categories such as A, B, C and D, and each sub-category has a different modalities to be dealt with.

Complicated procedure

“I got an NOC from the ULC wing in the Collectorate in February 2017 and I had gone to the Sub-Registrar office hoping to get the plot that was in my father’s name registered in my name. Initially, I was told that an endorsement from the Registration and Stamps Department in Amaravati would be needed. Later, I was told that it could be obtained from the Collectorate. The District Registrar’s office had said they could not accept the NOC in old format as it was not digitally signed by the Collector. The ULC wing said it could not issue the NOC in the new format. Finally, the ULC wing advised me to seek a fresh NOC as the one it had given earlier was invalid for reasons best known to the officials. I am now at my wits’ end,” laments a resident of Muralinagar.

Visakhapatnam MP M.V.V. Satyanarayana says that many people are suffering owing to the complicated process.

“The issue has been brought to the notice of Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy and he has promised to get the process simplified,” he said.

Mr. Satyanarayana, however, is of the opinion that 22A norms should remain in force, as it safeguards government land and protects it from being encroached upon.

Large chunks of government lands, including those allotted to freedom fighters, have been grabbed by land sharks in Visakhapatnam through forged documents.

A Special Investigation Team (SIT) was constituted to identify such lands and return them to the government.

‘New policy on the cards’

According to Mr. Satyanarayana, a proposal is being prepared to enable the government to bring out a new policy to address this issue.

“Our primary concern is to identify genuine beneficiaries and differentiate them from land grabbers and give them a fair chance to get an NOC in a simplified way,” the MP said.

“How can an employee who has spent his or her lifetime saving to buy a plot or an apartment, which was earlier cleared by the ULC survey and had changed hands a few times, be penalised, as a small piece of that land has now comes under the 22A?” asks Mr. Satyanarayana.

“We need to identify such sufferers and then create a single window clearance system to see that they get their NOCs effortlessly,” he adds.

According to the MP-elect, all MLAs are aware of the issue and efforts are on to initiate the single window clearance across the State.


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Printable version | Sep 24, 2021 1:50:15 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Visakhapatnam/house-owners-affected-by-22a-norms-pin-high-hopes-on-govt/article28023131.ece

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