By: Rina Chandran
Date: September 6th 2016
Source: Thomson Reuters Foundation
MUMBAI (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - India will nearly double the budget and extend the deadline for a programme to digitise land records as states struggle to survey land and property, large chunks of which have not been mapped in a century, a senior official said.
The national land record modernisation programme, launched in 2008, was aimed at surveying lands, upgrading records and establishing ownership. Scheduled to be completed in 2016 with a budget of 56 billion rupees ($841 million), the project will now conclude in 2021 at a projected cost of 110 billion rupees.
"It is a long process, as some of these lands have not been surveyed in a long time, some for 30 years, some for 100 years," said K.K. Phull, a consultant with the department of land records in New Delhi.
"Many states lack the means to survey lands, and for nearly all states this has not been a top priority so far, hence the delays," he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
The process includes mapping of land with aerial surveys, satellite imagery, drones, as well as physical markers. Existing land records are also verified and put online and linked to landowners.
The programme aims to provide clear titles of ownership that should result in government officials being able to monitor land more easily, speedier transactions, fewer disputes over ownership and less corruption in administration, Phull said.