1,400 laws govern land in eight states

1,400 laws govern land in eight states

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NEW DELHI: There are over 1,400 land laws across eight states in the country, shows an ongoing analysis of by the Centre for Policy Research-Land Rights Initiative (CPR-LRI). A significant number of them are amendment laws.

The findings, ‘One Thousand Land Laws: Mapping the maze of land regulation in India’ were presented at the India Land and Development conference on Tuesday.

“The more the number of legislation, the more are the complications for the public to get proper redressal. If there are fewer legislations, it is easy to give solutions to land grievances to people. Laws alone are not adequate but the procedural lines of it are more important,” said Ramesh Sharma, national convener, Ekta Parishad, an organization engaged in land rights’ reforms.

“Historically, there has been no systematic effort to popularise the laws or raise awareness among people to use these laws. This makes the complex nature of land laws inaccessible to people. There is also a lack of synchronization among panchayat legislations and state legislation,” he added. This contributes to smooth execution of laws.

Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Meghalaya, Punjab and Telangana were studied.
The data records 1,419 land laws, including state and Central ones. Of these, 1,269 are state laws and 150 are central. Of the central laws, there are 119 original laws and 31 amendments. Of the state laws, 467 are original laws and  802 amendment laws.

The states have been selected based on a number of factors — geographical representation, representation of different types of land, including agricultural land, urban land, plains, hilly areas, forest lands, common grazing lands, coastal areas, lands with mineral deposits, representative of different types of agrarian tenure systems and representative of different types of legal arrangements with respect to land, said Namita Wahi, director, LRI.

The CPR-LRI has relied on archival and field research to gather this data. Till now, the field research has not been completed for Jharkhand, Gujarat, and Punjab.

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