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Will the Revenue Bill be a game changer?

K Chandrasekhar Rao
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Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao 

Highlights

Telangana Government on Wednesday introduced four bills to bring in transparency in land administration and simplify the process of registration

Telangana Government on Wednesday introduced four bills to bring in transparency in land administration and simplify the process of registration. Going by the aims and objectives, it does sound interesting and gives an impression that it is a revolutionary one. It promises minimal human interference.

From the brief explanation given by the Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, this bill will make the farmer a king. (Rythu Raju). There will be no more breaking of heads, no more unnecessary litigations. Great and we wish it is so. The Dharani website which would be launched soon will be a ready reckoner for all across the globe to access data pertaining to land records of entire state.

The registration process will be carried out digitally and it will be end of farmers running around the offices of sub registrars and settling deals for payment. It will be end of era of corruption in the offices of registrars and sub registrars, KCR said.

If this turns out to be a reality in practice, then this certainly would be the most important achievement of the TRS government and KCR will go down as greatest reformer in the history of Telangana in the post-Nizam era.

Indians are known to find loop laws in any law even before it becomes operational. KCR claims that he had visualised this aspect as well and has empowered MROs to carry out registration and mutation of agricultural and Sub Registrars to carry out registration and mutation of non-agricultural lands in real time.

The government also promises safety and security of the database and will install multiple servers in state as part of backup mechanism and disaster management technology. Prior to the launch of Dharani website, the State government will undertake a complete survey of the State with geographical coordinates for each survey number fixed in these records. The coordinates will be based on longitude and latitude data.

Wow, sounds to be highly scientific. But what about the existing litigations pending in various courts pertaining to land. May be this issue the government will clarify when the bill will be taken for day long discussion. The Government has promised to permit in depth discussion for entire day but the opposition only hopes that their voice would not be muzzled in the name of time management.

While the Congress party was unhappy that only six minutes were given to them on a resolution on Tuesday, it was the turn of MIM to protest over brief time allotted to them on Wednesday. Yes, the Assembly rules do say that time should be allotted as per the strength of the party.

However, that is not so rigid that more time cannot be given and the ministers should not object if the Speaker being the supreme authority in the House allows members to speak for more time than what has been allotted to the party if the issue is of great importance and if it could affect the lives of the people of the state.

But unfortunately, a new trend is being witnessed in many State Assemblies that the opposition voice is being curtailed in the name of rules. It is rather a matter of concern that the ruling parties are increasingly becoming intolerant to voice of dissent and criticism including legislatures.

Let us hope that KCR Government will display its magnanimity and allow a thorough and fruitful discussion and make necessary amendments to the Bill if need be instead of completing the formality of holding a discussion and not agreeing even to a single suggestion from the opposition.

Let us hope that the new Revenue Bill will really become a landmark bill in the history of Telangana and will end cases like revenue officials seeking bribes even to the tune of over Rs one crore and brutal murder of revenue officials, incidents of which were witnessed recently.

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