Wait for land survey is as long as 9 months in some districts

In terms of pendency, Haveri district has the highest of 151 cases per surveyor.   | Photo Credit: File Photo

In many taluks of Belagavi and Haveri districts, among others, if a farmer in distress wishes to sell his land in a hurry, he may not be able to do so for about eight to nine months. For, the automated queue system is so long that his turn may come close to a year from the date of application. The reason for this pendency of cases for survey is owing to shortage of surveyors and the high number of applications. Without the podi (division of survey numbers into several sub-divisions), the farmer cannot sell land.

For example, in Hangal taluk of Haveri district, if a farmer applies for podi now, his ticket number would be 1,280, and surveyors would be assigned based on the number from the ascending order. Similar is the case in Athani taluk of Belagavi where the pendency is 1,064 while in Channagiri taluk of Davangere, there are 990 cases. In contrast, in at least 50 taluks across the State, the pendency of cases is nil, which means surveyors there do not have work. A land surveyor, according to a Government Order, has to complete 23 survey requests in a month.

In all, there are 1.31 lakh pre-survey cases pending in the State that has 3,650 surveyors. Belagavi has the highest with 17,814 cases, followed by Haveri and Davangere with 11,664 and 8,719 cases, respectively. Districts with high pendency cases include Bengaluru (7,169), Mysuru (6,502), Ramanagaram (5,950), Hassan (5,713), Vijayapura (4,707), and Kalaburagi (4,468).

The controversy

However, as attempts are being made to reduce the pendency of cases for land survey in several districts, especially in north Karnataka, it is now snowballing into a controversy, with a section of surveyors deputed to clear the pendency airing apprehension. The deputation — orders for which have been issued — to clear the pendency is temporary and for three months. As many as 90 surveyors have been deputed to clear pendency, and those would be replaced by another 90 for three months. The department hopes to bring the pendency levels to “normal” in about six months.

While the surveyors have complained of long-distance deputation, officials in the Survey, Settlement and Land Records Department have defended the move. “Though care has been taken to depute surveyors from neighbouring districts, in some cases, pendency was high even in the neighbouring districts which has resulted in deputation to a far-away district. But this deputation is within the State and temporary,” a senior official said. He pointed out that only 90 surveyors or less than 2% of the staff had been put on temporary deputation, and such deputation had come from those districts where the load was less to districts where pendency was high. “Work has been rationalised,” the official said.

In terms of pendency, Haveri district has the highest, with 151 cases per surveyor. “With 23 surveys fixed for a month, it may take at least eight months for a farmer in queue to get his podi done. This apart, there will be new applications. In rural areas, farm land or a portion of the land is sold mostly when there is medical emergency or a marriage. In case of death of a senior member, such podi requests come,” an official said.

Official transferred

Amid pressure from government employees to cancel deputation, the government late on Thursday evening transferred Commissioner, Survey, Settlement and Land Records, Munish Moudgil against whom surveyors had expressed ire over being deputed to distant places. Mr. Moudgil has been replaced by K.V. Trilok Chandra.

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Printable version | May 15, 2021 8:46:18 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/wait-for-land-survey-is-as-long-as-9-months-in-some-districts/article30813773.ece

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