Hyderabad: The new Telangana government has stated that it will deal stringently with land grabbing and encroachments, but retrieving more than 18,000 acres of prime land that have been encroached upon around the city, in the jurisdiction of Ranga Reddy district, will nevertheless be a great challenge.
The district administration did nothing when the encroached government lands were divided into plots by land sharks and sold to gullible people. The culprits include influential people and politicians.
Officials in the land protection cell of Ranga Reddy district say 300 cases of land encroachment are pending before the courts. “Private people encroached on the government land in the surrounding mandals as land value increased manifold. The land was then sold to gullible people by creating fake documents,” said a source.
Of the 5.53 lakh acres of land in 36 mandals of the district, the encroachments are concentrated in Quthubullapur, Balanagar, Serilingampally, Malakajgiri and Uppal mandals that fall in the peripheral areas of Greater Hyderabad. Of the total land encroached, 65 per cent is agriculture land and the remaining is non-agriculture.
“Many residential colonies have come up on the encroached land in these areas, making it difficult to recover. Some got the land regularised under government order 166,” said an official.
The land grabbers created fake layouts and divided the land into plots. They even changed the survey numbers in layouts and used private patta land survey numbers.
“In most cases these lands were sold through a sales agreement in a notary, some time even on white paper with a revenue stamp,” said a senior official of the wing.
In several cases, the officials meant to protect the land were hand-in-glove with the land sharks. They have caused huge losses to the administration and to taxpayers.