Sessions judge Sukhwinder Kaur has acquitted former tehsildar-cum-sub registrar Jhanda Ram in a corruption case in 2005.
In an FIR registered at the vigilance bureau, police station, Patiala, it was alleged that Jhanda Ram, who was posted as naib tehsildar in 2005, had indulged in criminal misconduct by registering title deeds without verifying the ownership of land. This was after some private people had sold government land posing themselves as owners and Ram was accused of causing pecuniary loss to the state government.
Advocate of the accused, Rajdev Singh Khalsa, contended, "All titles of immovable property are presumed titles. Sub-registrar is bound to register the title deeds, provided identity of seller and buyer is established. He is not bound to verify the ownership of the property before or after registration."
Ram was fighting the case after his retirement. Deed registration, which is common practice of land transfer, does not provide certainty of title and, therefore, land registration is not registration of title, but of deed of transaction. To obviate the anomaly of ambiguous titles, Land Titling Bill was proposed by central government to provide government guarantee of conclusive title instead of present presumed title system. The bill could not be finalised.