|M A I L B A G||
Wednesday, December 9, 1998
Registration deed: the nexus
THE system of writing the registration deed and thereafter the mutation of land from the patwari concerned was introduced during Mughal rule in India. It is a legacy of the Mughal raj and it continues till date without any substantial change. The language of the deed still continues to be more or less the same, and contains words of Urdu which neither the buyer nor the seller can understand.
The registration deed is written by professional writers through property dealers, and there have been many instances when there were mistakes in the registration deed but nobody was able to detect the same. It can be simplified if a proforma is designed in such a manner as it contains all the particulars required for the purpose of registration. The proforma will be signed by both the buyer and the seller. Similarly, the language should be modified. The proforma should have only blank space to be filled in by anybody. This will smash the nexus between the deed writers and the officials of the Revenue Department, exploiting the innocent people.
Similarly, for the purpose of mutation, the procedure is not very expedient. It also needs to be simplified. It should be the duty of the patwari to ensure mutation within a specified period after he has received the papers. The buyer should not be supposed to run after him. There should be a time-limit within which the patwari must accomplish the job and send a compliance report to the buyer as well as the tehsil office. The patwari may be paid a nominal fee by the buyer concerning his visit to his doorstep. This will compensate his extra efforts and will not be a burden on the government.
As far as the revenue fee for the sale of land is concerned, it still needs to be reduced so that people do not indulge in concealing the sale price. The middle man should be avoided in the system of registration, and it should be a routine matter. With will and effort, this system can be simplified.
Once Dr S S Johl, a leading economist, suggested that the revenue fee should be 1 per cent only so that no one asks for low price registration, and the question of B class money is totally eliminated. When the present government in Punjab was formed the Chief Minister announced that henceforth the public would not suffer in the tehsils, and registration/mutation work will be finalised at the doorstep of the public.
I, therefore, suggest that this system should be changed in toto. The purchaser should deposit the revenue fee to the patwari, and the matter of registration deed should be taken care of by the patwari himself, containing a few lines only in the prescribed proforma in simple Punjabi. All formalities of taking possession should be at the doorstep of the seller in the presence of the sarpanch / councillor/M.C./respectable citizens of the area concerned and no one should visit the tehsil office.
In this way, public harassment can be avoided, and corruption removed, and the role of B class money is detected totally. I still recall my visit to the banks in the USA where the customer, sitting in his car, gets his cheque encashed without going inside the bank.
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Recharging holy water
Apropos of the news-item recharging Amritsar ground-water (The Tribune, December 3), the scheme of using the outflow from the holy tanks for recharging the ground-water is welcome, but it is too little and too late for making any dent on the mighty problem of the declining water-table. This scheme would be more of a disposal of the outflow from the holy tanks than any serious attempt for recharging the ground-water.
It is beyond ones comprehension as to why the use of rain-water, which is available in a much greater quantity and is going waste via the drains, is not being attempted for recharging. This can tackle the problem at a much faster pace and over more extensive areas. No doubt, it shall have to be desilted, but this will be too small a price for its benefits.
Though not tried anywhere in Punjab and Haryana, there should be no difficulty in having some such devices in the body of the drain itself as are not only foolproof but can also work automatically round the clock without much of supervision on the principle of inverted sieve. Some amount of research and experimentation is unavoidable. Punjab and Haryana must take the initiative for such a pioneering venture as the Green Revolution in both states is showing signs of fizzling out because of the depleting water-table.
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Astonishingly in almost all write-ups the year 2000 is referred to as the first year of the new millennium, which is not correct. As a matter of fact, the year 2000 will be the last year of the 20th century and second millennium. The first millennium starting with January 1, 0001, ended with the close of the year 1000 AD. Similarly, the second millennium that began on 1.1.1001 will end on December 31, 2000, and the third millennium will run from January 1, 2001, to December 31, 3000.
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The Indian voter is lucky in the sense that he always knows what a political party will do, and what it will not do after coming to power. It will do exactly what it criticised while being in the Opposition, and it will never do what is contained in its manifesto!
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Can you make a guess about Deepa Mehas next movie after Fire?
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