Hyderabad: The government of Telangana on Wednesday introduced four Bills in the Assembly that are meant to pave the way for digitisation of land records and transactions.
The Telangana Rights in Land and Pattadar Passbooks Bill 2020 and the Telangana Abolition of the Post of Village Revenue Officers Bill 2020 were tabled by chief minister K Chandrashekar Rao said. These will empower citizens to transfer agricultural and non-agricultural properties at the click of a button through the upcoming Dharani portal.
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.
Chandrashekar Rao also announced a comprehensive land survey to categorise agriculture and non-agriculture lands. He said each inch of land would be surveyed and the survey numbers tagged with geographic coordinates so that there will not be any scope for disputes.
The chief minister told the House that the bills are meant to bring about transparency in land administration and simplify the registration process, minimising human interference. The much-awaited Dharani website would be activated soon for the public to access data pertaining to land records of the entire state.
He explained that under the new law, the lands will be categorised as agriculture and non-agriculture lands; non-agriculture land transactions will be dealt with by sub-registrars and agriculture land transactions by tahsildars.
Stating that Section 7 of the Registration Act 1908 gives discretionary powers to the state government to authorise any person to carry out registrations, he declared that using that discretion, the state government was empowering 590 tahsildars across the state as joint registrars.
Chandrashekar Rao said the entire registration process would be so streamlined so as to require just one visit to the office of a sub-registrar or mandal revenue officer. Land records would be updated in real-time.
He said, “Over 89.47 lakh properties in local bodies have already been digitised. All land or property data will be available online and thus unauthorised or illegal transactions will be prevented.”
The chief minister assured the House that for safety and security of the database, the state government will install multiple servers at multiple places in the state as well as other states as part of a backup mechanism.
The chief minister announced that under the new bill all revenue courts at the tahsildar, RDO and joint collector level stand abolished. The power of issuing caste certificates would be delegated to gram panchayats and municipalities.
In view of the abolishion of village revenue officer posts, the chief minister said the 5,480 VROs will be accommodated in different government departments.
He said there are more than 20,000 village revenue assistants (VRAs) in the state with a consolidated pay of Rs 10,000 per month. As the post too will be abolished, they will be given postings as pay scale employees depending on their qualifications.
He said the state government took the decision to ensure their job safety despite an additional burden of Rs 260 crore per annum on the state exchequer.
He said at present landowners are being asked to produce pattadar pass books and title deeds for transactions related to land and also to secure loans from any credit agency under section 6-B and section 6-C of the Telangana Rights in Land and Pattadar Passbooks Act, 1971. He said several instances have come to the notice of the government that the farmers are experiencing difficulties getting mutation on their lands after transfer and obtaining agricultural loans from the lending agency by producing the passbook and title deed physically.
He said, “Since all land-related data will be computerized and maintained in the Dharani portal, the government has decided to bring in the new Telangana Rights in Lands and Pattadar Passbooks Act, 2020 in place of the existing one.”