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Dual status for land - fraud on fraud!

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In the letter, a copy of which has been marked to the DG&IGP and the home minister, the city Police Commissioner Mr Shankar Bidari has said there have been irregularities and delays in implementing the land revenue Act and rules, giving scope for serious fraud, forgery and law and order situation.
Whenever agricultural land is converted for non-agricultural use by the competent authority, it is not deleted from revenue land or agricultural land records. This, despite revenue authorities themselves making the conversion. They continue to maintain Record of Rights in Form No 16, resulting in dual records for the same land parcel. On the strength of revenue records, many re-sell the same land resulting in forgery and cheating. Such instances have given scope for serious law and order problems, the letter stated.
Bidari has urged the revenue department to initiate steps to delete the records of lands converted from agriculture to non-agriculture land within three months of such conversions. He has suggested that local administrations open a new khata to enable them to realise taxes on these vacant lands.
The same practice should be extended to lands acquired and taken possession of by land acquisition officers for various projects, KIADB, BDA, etc, he added.

For the full report in the TOI, click here

The letter was written in the wake of the controversy surrounding Shanthinagar Housing Cooperative Society, where some individuals tried to siphon off land worth over Rs 1,000 crore (a 66 acre land parcel in Koramangala). For the full report on that in the TOI, click here

The question that arises is how come the revenue authorities have been oblivious to the loopholes in their procedures even as such massive frauds are being committed, particularly when Karnataka was supposedly a leader in the matter of digitisation of land records (check this), and it required a conscientious Police Commissioner to point it out to them. It looks more deliberate than just a case of omission.

Muralidhar Rao


murali772's picture

kind of spooky!

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When I provided a link to this blog on 'savekoramangala y-group' along-with a short comment, this is how Maj Kapur, a prominent citizen, responded:

When I raised this question to the Principal Secretary (Revenue) in 1996, while sympathising with all I asked, his parting advice was "Major, do you posses a licenced weapon?" When I said 'Yes", he advised, "Please keep it handy at all times, because as you leave this office, you are a marked man". I still keep it with ammo - ready for use.

When I made a PP presentation to Principal Secretary, Environment and Forests, he immediately dictated a letter to KSPCB - a letter that never got dispatched and on repeated requests for a copy, the staff confidentially told me not to expect any copy because instructuions have been given not to send the letter.

Every official I met, every department I visited from 1996 till 2004, the one common reply I got was that this is big time money with big time politicians and backed by mafia. When I visited the office of the society claiming to own the land, I was welcomed by a HUGE wall size picture of a leading politician staring at me the moment I opened the entrance door of the office.

I gave the brief, along with all the documents that I had gathered to leading lawyer with the intention of finding out out if court could be approached with a reasonable chance of stopping the process of destruction of this water shed land (low lying where birds used to nest, and cattle used to graze), the file got lost - just disaapeared, when I recovered some of the documents from whatever copies I had, and gave the same to another law firm, guess what it again disappeared!!

When after the news item appeared in the TOI, I called the Metro editor and told her I had a whole lot of documents and photographic evidence about the piece of land and if TOI would like to find out more about. She said she will put her Reporter on to me. That was the day after the story was published. I am still waiting.

Do you get the message? Probably many behind the scene deals are in the process of being struck and  Koramangala in particular will lose vital open space which is also the water shed area of Bellandur tank lying in Koramangala Valley.

Kind of spooky. And, that's why it required a no-nonsense Commissioner like Mr Shankar Bidari to open up the matter, and pack off some big time mafioso to the cooler. And, quite as he has suggested, perhaps the government should now re-possess the land and convert it into a tree park to bring about the much needed balance between developed and open spaces in Koramangala.

Muralidhar Rao
murali772's picture

curious goings-on

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Meanwhile, an ad has appeared in the ToI (accessible here), which raises serious questions about entitlements.

May be the government to take over the land and convert int into a tree park. It was after all the catchment of Bellandur tank, to begin with. Just a thought.

Muralidhar Rao
psaram42's picture

Ridiculous Mafia?

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"  Whenever agricultural land is converted for non-agricultural use by the competent authority, it is not deleted from revenue land or agricultural land records. This, despite revenue authorities themselves making the conversion. They continue to maintain Record of Rights in Form No 16, resulting in dual records for the same land parcel."

This is rediculous!! 

When a property is sold even if it is not converted, the onership is changed once the deal is registered. So how can the previous owner resell? 

That is why such hordings:-

 The project is on hold till sorting out the mischief. Reselling this example property by the previous owner is at the risk for both parties the resell buyer and the reseller. The reseller is clearly at the risc of being put behind bars as per my present undersatnding. Any lawer can substantiate this..

murali772's picture

'power'ful minister

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Ramaswamy also accused Power Minister D K Shivakumar of being involved in a housing society scam in 2003. Shivakumar was co-operation minister then.
Shanthinagar House Building Co-operative Society was allotted 66 acres and 22 guntas at Begur Hobli in Bangalore South taluk in 1984.
Later, a bogus society of the same name claimed the land, and got it. This society operated for years under a fake registration number.
In 2004, it formed 156 sites, of which 143 were given to members of one family. Later the GVK Rau Committee recommended action against it. The committee said the society had failed to provide any proper registration documentation. The government should order a probe into Shivakumar’s role, Ramaswamy said.
Shivakumar denied the charge. “Why didn’t the H D Kumaraswamy government take action? The Ramaswamy committee was constituted with the sole motive of framing me,” he told Express. “These are politically motivated charges with no basis.”
For the full text of the report in the New Indian Express, click here.
There's a factual error in what the power minister is saying. The Ramaswamy committee was constituted with the motive of framing not just him; but the likes of him.
Meanwhile, there's a lot of action seen on the ground in the area. I wonder if the people who have entered into any of the transactions are aware of the legal status of the land. 
Muralidhar Rao
murali772's picture

out on the streets

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A street in Veeranapalaya, near Nagavara, North Bengaluru, looked like a refugee camp on Friday with furniture and other household items strewn all over the road. Around 30 families living in Panchamukhi Homes apartment complex were evicted by police armed with a court order. The residents claimed the eviction happened without any warning. The apartment complex allegedly stood on a 165-acre belonging to Vyalikaval House Building Cooperative Society’s layout. - - - -The court order had restored to the farmers the land acquired by the society.
For the full text of the report in the ToI, click here.
Can't be too sure if the same fate awaits future residents in namma Shantinagar House Building Co-op Society layout, since here too there are too many infirmities in the processes involved. 
Muralidhar Rao
murali772's picture

quite a test case

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Describing the alleged multi-crore Shanthinagar Housing Cooperative Society scam as the “mother of all housing scams” in the state, former MLA A T Ramaswamy demanded that the state government take back the land allotted to the society. - - - Stating that Energy Minister D K Shivakumar’s role was evident in the alleged irregularities, he said, “We will knock the doors of all, including the state government, the governor and the judiciary for justice.”  - - - Freedom fighter H S Doreswamy, who also spoke on the occasion, threatened to go on an agitation if the state government failed to initiate action against those involved in the alleged scam.
For the full text of the report in the New Indian Express, click here.
The indefatigable duo of Mr A T Ramaswamy and Mr H S Doreswamy have rightly been pointing out that the so-called reclamations of government lands have so far been from small time encroachers. As such, perhaps they have decided to take on the biggest of the big fish, succeeding which it will become easier for the government to reclaim the entire lot of encroached lands at one go. But, it's a very "power"ful minister that the duo are up against, which makes it a test case for them, the minister, as well as the Siddaramaiah government. 
The people are watching keenly. Perhaps, it's time they did more than that. 


Muralidhar Rao
murali772's picture

dicey proposition

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First, we should differentiate between encroachers and land-grabbers. Encroachers are just the unauthorised occupants of government land without having titles or government documents to claim their right on the land. They cannot sell it either. So such lands can be cleared any time.

Land-grabbing is a criminal offence as fictitious documents are created to claim rights, and the land is sold to innocent people. The connivance of government officials in such acts is certain. This is the more serious and dangerous issue and the government should punish them mercilessly.

For the full text of the interview of former JD(S) MLA Mr A T Ramaswamy, who headed the joint house committee on encroachments of government land in and around Bengaluru, in the New Indian Express, click here.

A reading of my post of 11th Jan, this year (just scroll above), makes it clear which land and about whom Mr Ramaswamy is talking. And, for all of that, many major builders are supposedly announcing their projects there (check here). Dicey proposition investing in these, one should think.

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