In Tamil Nadu where close to 40% of the land titles are disputed, one can be certain about the legality of any purchase only until somebody challenges it. The situation is no different in many other states and it is estimated that it may take several hundred years to create clear titles for all land parcels in the country.
While Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat have made considerable progress in computerization of land records and their integration with respective registration departments, Tamil Nadu is among the states that have made very little progress. This, despite the Centre earmarking huge funds under the National Land Records Modernisation Programme (NLRMP) for states to utilise.
In what could be termed a delayed act towards providing guaranteed title to land owners in Tamil Nadu, the state government has launched a pilot land records management programme in Kancheepuram and Tirunelveli districts to computerize urban land records. Two high-level committees, constituted through a government order recently, will monitor the programme, which will be followed up by computerization of land records in all urban centres in the state.
Computerisation of rural land records is already completed in Tamil Nadu.
The NLRMP aims at reforming land records management and land administration into a transparent system, which will ultimately lead to replacing the present document registration system that is followed in subregistrar offices, with a foolproof title registration system, said an official. “While the former is a presumptive title registration system, the latter guarantees a clear and conclusive land title,” said A Arumuga Nainar, former additional inspector general in the registration department.
Many countries including Germany, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia and Singapore follow the land title registration system.
Apart from providing a single window to handle land records and registration of immovable properties, the title registration system will ensure automated and automatic mutation of title in land records and also provide title insurance to insulate the title holder from liabilities arising out of defects in the title.
With the use of satellite images and aerial photographs, physical land surveys will be done away with. In short, at the click of a button, any government agency will be able to check physical condition and title details of any property and it would put an end to land grabbing and registration of fraudulent documents. Also, with the availability of all land data online, seamless integration would be possible for micro and macro-planning, said an official.
Source: The Times of India, Chennai