Friday, September 15, 2017

Land Records Updating Project Guidelines : Vanam Jwala Narasimha Rao

Land Records Updating Project Guidelines
Vanam Jwala Narasimha Rao

Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao, on several occasions, repeatedly mentioned that the government has decided to deposit Rs 8,000 per acre for two crops per year in the bank accounts of farmers as an Input investment. For this the need has arisen to find out the actual details on who owned how much land and where? Similarly, the government had acquired several lakh acres of agriculture land from the farmers for projects, laying of railway lines, schools, hospitals, and such public utility activities but these were not recorded. These also need to be updated. In every village, there are 80 to 95 percent of lands, which have no dispute or litigation. Clarity on these lands with the help of people and farmers in the village should be established. In the second phase, identification of the lands that were in litigation would be taken up. Clarity would be established on these land records based on the verdicts given by the courts. Identification of the government lands, Wakf lands, Endowment Lands, lands under the government offices etc. would also be ascertained.

Against this background and in accordance with the suggestions made by CM in the review meeting held on 31st August 2017, relevant guidelines have been issued by Chief Commissioner of Land Administration to be followed during the Land records rectification, purification and updating programme. Such a gigantic programme is going to take place after a gap of 80 years in the Telangana Region. The guidelines issued are clear, simple and easy to follow. Government with the objective of having an accurate land records system which reflect the ground reality and to have a transparent and accountable Land Record Management System, so that farmers can freely access land records, as a first step decided to take up a special time bound campaign for Purification and updating of land records.

In this campaign, it is expected that up to 90 percent of the land issues would be resolved (Part A). The remaining land issues which are expected to be not more than 10 percent, would be taken up in the next phase (Part B).

Guidelines among other things will be in the form of formation of teams, training and capacity building, constitution of state and district control rooms, collection of records, desk verification, listing of non-agricultural lands and other processes.

The District Collector shall form teams and each team shall be headed by Tahsildar / Deputy Tahsildar or a Revenue Inspector, so that each team covers nine (09) villages. While the team shall constitute predominantly revenue functionaries, the Collector may draw the services of para-legals available with Rural Development Department / Youth (specially trained for this purpose). While forming the teams the collectors shall ensure that on an average, a team shall have to validate about 250 acres of land per day. It is estimated that each team will take on an average of 10 days per village. In 100 days’ time teams can cover the whole District.

It is essential that team members have a comprehensive understanding, knowledge and awareness of the objective and nature of the exercise being undertaken by the government. For this it is essential that the District Collector undertakes trainings and orientation programs at various levels. The District Collector shall ensure that the team members are trained in Objectives of the exercise; Step by step Processes involved in the exercise; Formats for collection of information; Statutory processes to be followed for correction and modification of the record and Progress reports to be sent every day to district and state. For training, the districts may draw from the state resource team. Each team shall prepare revenue Village profile giving details of total survey numbers, khatas, pattaadars, cultivated and not-cultivated land, government land, assigned lands etc.

Since the exercise of land record purification is being taken up in a campaign mode it is very important to have a complete control of the processes so that tasks are completed in a time bound manner. This may include advice to a team on a possible doubt on certain land issue. It is also important that issues if any cropping up during the village visit be tackled then and there before a possible escalation. For doing this the district control rooms shall be set up which will monitor progress, ensure field level processes are as per intended objective, clarify doubts and ensure progress reports are sent on time. The state government also shall set up a state control team.

The teams formed shall collect and gather the various records before going into the village. They are: Base records like Sethwar, Khasra Pahani, Sesala Pahani or oldest available Pahani; Latest Pahani printed from online Land Records Database; 1-B register; Amendment register for preceding ten (10) years and Village Map (Wet and Dry) for reference.

Desk verification of the records is a critical step in the Land record purification process. The work to be be divided into four (04) parts.

In the first part, reconciliation of extents shall be done where the extent in the Pahani, Sethwar and the extent in Khasra Pahani/ Sesala Pahani/ the oldest Pahani are not the same. The difference in extent may be due to different reasons namely: Transaction has happened between vendor and vendee in which Vendee name included but vendors name has not been deleted; Computer/clerical error (double entry); There is error in succession correction and Possible gap area. Invariably the extent of a survey number in Khasra Pahani/Sesala Pahani/ Oldest Pahani should be the constant against which corrections of extents in Pahani should be made.

In the second part, the corrections in details of Pattaadars (depending on the case either the correction may be carried out at desk level itself or may be listed for verifying and correcting on the field. These include: Listing of dead Pattaadars; Mutation completed off line but nor carried out in the Pahani; Pending Mutations; Clerical errors; Missing Pattaadar Details in the online Land records database.

In part three, non–agricultural lands (NALA) supported by proceedings can be straight away entered in the Pahani. Land acquisition awards and post ward actions shall be straight away entered unless there is a legal dispute. Alienation proceedings shall be entered directly and part four is listing of civil and revenue court cases details.

There is lot of preparatory work before the visit to the village which include consolidation of data available, preparation of individual notices, timetable for schedule of visits, publicity and intimation to all public representatives.

On completion of desk verification, each team shall now have specific details about probable corrections in the village with respect to non-agricultural lands and agricultural lands. All such details shall be systematically listed before the visit. Official copy of 1-B khata wise shall be printed wherein the details of the land with respect to the farmer/ Pattaadar and kept ready for serving upon visit to the village. This shall be treated as notice. Each team shall prepare a schedule of Mandal wise village visits as per the action plan and the District Collector shall ensure the timetable shall also be maintained at District level for monitoring purposes. The schedule of visit of the team to the village shall be publicized widely through media and tom-tom in the village. The District Collector may conduct meeting with various Public representatives such as Minister / M.P. / MLA / MLC / ZP Chairperson and any other Public representative and inform the purpose of special drive and invite for full support and active participation. The RDOs and Tahsildars shall do the same at divisional and Mandal levels.

Later the Team shall serve a copy of 1-B extract to each Pattaadar or farmer before visit to the village. The team shall carry compulsorily some documents during their visit to the field. They are: Base records like Sethwar, Khasra Pahani / if not available Sesala Pahani or oldest available Pahani; Updated Pahani; Updated 1-B register; Amendment register for preceding (10) years; Register to write down the details of applications regarding claims and objections received during the field visit; Register to record notices issued individual Pattaadar wise along with a provision for obtaining signature of the Pattaadar in the register; Register to record survey issues/ Court Cases; Register to record Pattaadar’s acceptance on updated 1-B issued along with a provision for obtaining signature of the pattaadar in the register and Village Map (Wet and Dry).

The Tahsildar concerned shall ensure that the time table of the team visit to the Village be intimated to all the concerned Pattaadars and Farmers. A day before the field visit proper intimation to all the concerned Pattaadars and Farmers shall be given through beat of tom tom in the village. Grama Sabha or Rythu Sabha for the first time at a conspicuous place in the village to be conducted. The team shall explain objectives of purification and updating of land records. Serving of I-B extracts (Door to Door where necessary) and taking acknowledgment (this may be done even before the visit to the village) to be done. This shall be treated as notice duly inviting claims and objections. The application for submission of claims and objections shall be as per the proforma. Field inspection and collection of details of Non-Agricultural Lands / Central and State Government assets should be done. Recording of claims and objections and recording status of occupation of Government lands need to be done.

As per the provisions and rules framed under T.S Land in pattaadar Passbook and Title Deed Act, 1971 and subsequent amendments, the Tahsildar is competent to make corrections and continuous updating of Record of Rights. Correction/ Updating of records based on the field inspection shall be carried out by the team. Conduct of (Grama Sabha) Rythu Sabha for the second time and Reading of available List of Non-Agricultural lands / Central and State Government assets shall be done by him. Reading out of corrected / updated 1-B and Pahani, Verification of corrected I-B and PPB, other relevant documents of each pattaadar / owner with reference to updated pahani (or) with draft notification need to take place. The declaration of the pattaadar / Farmer shall be obtained in proforma. Where there is no rival claim and the claim is clearly established by documentary evidence, necessary proceedings to be issued by the Tahsildar before the conclusion of the village visit after due enquiry / field visit if necessary. Recording the disputes and details in unsettled issues to be done. Pahani and I-B register shall be updated duly following the statutory processes laid down in the Act and Rules.

In case of all Government lands, wherever the original assignee is in physical possession those entries shall be recorded and 1-B extracts shall be served duly obtaining the assignee’s signature. The details of pattaadar Pass Book, in such cases wherever not issued shall also be recorded in this exercise. Wherever original assignee is not in possession, the team shall record details of all such occupants along with their socio-economic status.

The Team shall record all the details of Forestlands, survey number-wise in the village and the status of the same as well as shall record the details of survey number-wise extent of water-spread area (FTL) of each source.

At the end of the exercise, the Tahsildar shall issue consolidated proceedings capturing all corrections/modifications /updating that have taken place during the land record updating and the concerned Tahsildar shall issue the certificate on declaring the village error. The team after updating of Pahani and 1-B register shall take final print outs of updated I-B (After field level purification), serve the same to each farmer in the village duly obtaining signature of each owner/ pattaadar in the Register prescribed that there is no dispute with respect to the land concerned. At the same time should take acknowledgement of the receipt of final I-B copy.

On completion of the above process in the village, the team shall declare that the record of right of that village updated and made error free to the maximum extent possible. The final copy of the 1-B with attested signatures of all farmers shall be published in the village Chavadi/ prominent place. This shall include list of all such survey numbers/Khatas which have objections/not settled. The team shall prepare a report on the lands where corrections/updating are pending duly recording the reasons in detail thereof and obtaining the signature of the present owner / Pattaadar invariably.

The team shall update the progress report on daily basis and the same shall be consolidated at Mandal and District–levels. Subsequently after completion of the village details shall be reported.

The District collectors are expected to bestow their personal attention and take-up this work on utmost topmost priority and ensure that the guidelines are scrupulously followed by the teams and the work entrusted shall be completed within the stipulated timelines.

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