Kerala

‘No database of land ceiling cases’

Delay in acquisition of surplus land of 1,588.04 ha in 5 districts

The Revenue and Disaster Management Department does not have a taluk wise database of land ceiling cases, exempted land, declared/ acquired surplus land, and surplus land to be assigned.

In a report for the revenue sector for the year ended March 2018, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) noted that the department could only provide a consolidated progress report on taluk wise ceiling cases and surplus land.

A database is crucial for identification, protection, and utilisation of surplus land, the CAG pointed out in the report tabled in the Assembly.

In 43 of the 89 Sub-Registrar Offices in Kasaragod, Kottayam, Malappuram, Palakkad, and Wayanad selected for the audit by the CAG, 184 registered documents for 6.07 ha, involving 5,192.41 ha and valued at ₹311.35 crore, were not identified by the Revenue Department for initiating land ceiling cases.

Fair value

Land in excess of the ceiling limit was not reported by the department while accepting land tax payment details in respect of holdings above 6.07 ha in 358 of the 372 cases involving 12,574.51 ha.

The audit found that no ceiling case was initiated in 114 cases involving 2,141.73 ha valued at ₹499.44 crore as per fair value out of the 197 cases reported by the Taluk Office to the respective Taluk Land Board as having land in excess of the ceiling.

A joint inspection of the audit team with representatives of taluk and village offices found that violations of exemption of 239.10 ha, valued at ₹189.73 crore as per fair value, remain undetected.

In the five districts, there was a delay in acquiring surplus land of 1,588.04 ha. Irregular assignment of surplus land was also noticed by the CAG.

As many as 798 buildings completed during 2015-16 and 2016-17 escaped building tax assessment estimated at ₹2.70 crore. Non-collection and short collection of basic tax was also found in 15 cases.

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Printable version | Apr 3, 2020 8:03:54 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/no-database-of-land-ceiling-cases/article30824573.ece

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