Telangana govt introduces bills to simplify land deals, seeks to revamp revenue administration
The Telangana government on Wednesday introduced landmark legislations in the assembly, seeking to overhaul the revenue administration by simplifying agriculture and non-agricultural land transactions, preventing land encroachments and eradicating corruption at the grassroot level.
Chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao introduced the Telangana Rights in Land and Pattadar Passbooks Bill 2020 and the Telangana Abolition of the Posts of Village Revenue Officers Bill 2020, and state municipal administration minister K T Rama Rao introduced the Telangana Municipal Laws Amendment Bill 2020 and Panchayat Raj minister Errabelli Dayakar Rao introduced the Telangana Panchayat Raj Amendment Bill 2020.
“The overall philosophy of the four bills is to bring about revolutionary reforms in land administration, though first two bills are related to the revenue department and the others are concerned with municipal administration and panchayat raj departments,” the chief minister said.
Making an elaborate presentation on the bills in the House, KCR said the state government had taken up a comprehensive survey of available lands in the state, including agriculture lands, government lands, forest lands, private lands and lands assigned to the landless poor.
“Every inch of the land will be surveyed and digitised along with longitudes and latitudes in the newly created Dharani portal of the state government, so that there is no possibility of one person encroaching the other’s lands. The details of all government lands and assigned lands will be locked in the portal and will not be unlocked for registrations and mutation by individuals who try to encroach them,” he said.
He said an estimated 90 lakh properties in local bodies had already been digitised to carry out transactions digitally in Dharani portal. The entire land or property data will be available online and thus, preventing unauthorised or illegal transactions,” he explained.
For safety and security of the database in Dharani, the state government would install multiple servers at multiple places as part of a backup mechanism and disaster management technology, he said.
The chief minister said the discretionary powers of officials in registering the land and properties had been removed in the new legislations. “As many as 590 tehsildars (block revenue officials) across the state will hereafter function as joint sub-registrars as well and do registration and mutation of agriculture lands at the same time. The registration and mutation of non-agriculture lands will be done by existing 141 sub-registrars,” he said.
The entire registration process will be carried out digitally and people can visit the offices of the tehsildar-cum-sub-registrar only for once. “The entire registration process will be completed within an hour after submitting necessary documents and land records will be updated on the portal real time,” he said.
The chief minister said people won’t have to run around offices for certificates like encumbrance certificates, income certificates or caste certificates, which could be downloaded from the portal straightaway. The government was also contemplating incorporation of family tree details of every household in the portal so as to avoid disputes in deciding the legal heirs of properties.
KCR further announced that there would be no revenue courts hereafter and all the magisterial powers of tehsildars, revenue divisional officers and joint collectors to deal with the land disputes would be withdrawn.
“If at all there is any land dispute, people could go to civil courts. As of now, around 16,000 cases are pending before these courts. They will be settled by fast-track tribunals,” he said.
The new legislations also seek to abolish the posts of Village Revenue Officers (VROs) and Village Revenue Assistants (VRAs), the chief minister clarified that about 20,000 VRAs will be given scale posts in different government departments as per their qualification. Similarly, about 5,480 VROs will be accommodated in different departments, he said.