Incorrect land record digitisation dispossesses families belonging to Dalits and Tribes people in rural Madhya Pradesh

Reported by

Satish Bhartiya

Legal Data by

Anmol Gupta, Mukta Joshi

Edited by

Radhika Chatterjee

Updated by

Published on

October 24, 2022

October 24, 2022

Updated on

October 24, 2022

Location of Conflict

Keolari Kalan

Sagar

Reason or Cause of Conflict

Other Kind of Land Use

(

)

People Affected by Conflict

Households Affected by Conflict

23

Land Area Affected (in Hectares)

33

ha

Starting Year

2018

State

Madhya Pradesh

Sector

Land Use

In Kesli tehsil of Sagar district in Madhya Pradesh, lands of actual owners were registered in the name of others when the land records were being digitised.

Social workers and state officials based in Madhya Pradesh allege that this wrong transfer of ownership has been done mostly on the lands of tribes people and Dalit families.

In 1999-2000, the Madhya Pradesh government under the Union government scheme of computerisation of land records, digitised land records of more than 55,000 villages. Which includes Kesli tehsil, located 65 kilometres away from Sagar district headquarters.

The two documents in the hands of the LCW include the report written by the Patwari to the Tehsildar and the revenue order follow-up letter. These letters revealed the conversion of a total of 30 people in 126.56 acres (51.21 hectares) of land in Kesli. Out of which the land records of 10 people were improved. The wrong name is entered on 20.

According to this report of the year 2018 (which is with LCW) of Shailendra Singh, who was a Patwari in Kesli Tehsil, the former Patwaris registered improper names in the records without the orders of the Presiding Officer (Tehsildar). This report details the wrong conversions of 23 people (mostly Adivasis and Dalits) in a total of 33.21 hectares of land.

Shailendra says "These cases are of fraud and dishonesty under Section 420 (Indian Penal Code). The Collector's order led to action and "probably" 16 records were rectified."

But when the LCW examined the documents, the wrong records of the land of 14 out of 23 people were found intact.

Another example of wrongful transfer of land ownership was shared with LCW by RTI activist Dhaniram Gupta. According to a letter he received from the land and revenue department of Sagar district administration, in November 2019, the Kesli Tehsildar presented the inquiry report in the public hearing in the complaint of altering the records with the connivance of the officers and employees on the land. 17 complainants from five villages were present in the public hearing.

In this transfer, Gupta claims, “On the request of these 17 people, the then Sagar Collector Preeti Maithil got the names of these eligible people registered in 2019. But 100 percent of this land is still in the possession of illegal people.” Mittu Ahirwar, a resident of village Idalpur confirms this, he says, “My name has been registered on the land (0.81 ha), but the possession is still with Ramnath. When we ask him for land, then he says, we will cut off his arms and legs.

At the same time, many people are also struggling to get the land registered in their names. One of which is also the Veersing Gond of Basa village. Speaking to LCW, he said, “my land – 40 acres i.e. 16.18 hectares – has been in my possession for 60 years but the mutation has transferred my land to nine people from another panchayat. I have already complained about this incorrect mutation to the Tehsildar, Collector and the Chief Minister's helpline number, but am yet to receive a response.

According to the Government of India, the Land Computerisation Record (LCR) in Madhya Pradesh has been 100 percent. But the government land given to the landless in the year 2000 has not been computerised. Ganesh Chadar of Keolari Kalan in Kesali—the Dalit community—had received a lease of 2.47 acres (1 hectare) of government land in the year 2000. Speaking to LCW, he said, “I bribed the patwari Rs 2,000 to get the land record computerised. I also asked for help from the CM helpline number. Even then the land was not computerised. Because of this we never got the benefit of Kisan Credit Card scheme.

The Tehsildar of Kesli refused to speak with LCW, while the district collector of Sagar, Deepak Arya, said he had no information about this matter.

However, a few days ago, the Collector's statement came to the fore in the media report regarding the transfer of land. In this, he said, "If there is a written complaint of land conversion, then investigation will be done and those who are guilty will be punished with departmental action."

Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Complaint against procedural violations

Demand for legal recognition of land rights

Other Demand/Contention of the Affected Community

Correcting errors in land records during digitisation to transfer ownership to original owners and halting illegal capture of land by influential parties

Region Classification

Rural

Type of Land

Private

Type of Common Land

Private

Total investment involved (in Crores):

Type of investment:

Year of Estimation

Page Number In Investment Document:

Has the Conflict Ended?

When did it end?

Why did the conflict end?

Categories of Legislations Involved in the Conflict

Legislations/Policies Involved

Madhya Pradesh Land Revenue Code, 1959
Section 51 [Revenue officials may initiate review of any orders passed by the Department after receiving a complaint from an affected party or at their own instance.]
Digital India Land Records Modernization Programme (DILRMP), Guidelines, Technical Manuals and MIS 2018-19, Ministry of Rural Development
Chapter 2, Para 3-4 [The Guidelines for the Programme mandate that government officials record objections from any affected persons while conducting a survey of the land. Individual notices have to be served to each affected land owner/ enjoyer for recording of objections.]
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  4. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  5. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

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    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

  7. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut commodo diam libero vitae erat. Aenean faucibus nibh et justo cursus id rutrum lorem imperdiet. Nunc ut sem vitae risus tristique posuere.

Whether claims/objections were made as per procedure in the relevant statute

Yes

What was the claim(s)/objection(s) raised by the community?

The community wrote to the collector (name of collector) of Kesli tehsil, Sagar district, to take action against the illegal change in land ownership records during digitisation of land records. They also demanded that the records be corrected to reflect the names of original owners.

What was the Decision of the Concerned Government Department?

The --- ordered that the land records be corrected and initiated an enquiry into the matter.

Legal Processes and Loopholes Enabling the Conflict:

Land record discrepancies

Forced evictions/dispossession of land

Legal Status:

Out of Court

Status of Case In Court

Whether any adjudicatory body was approached

No

Name of the adjudicatory body

Name(s) of the Court(s)

Case Number

Main Reasoning/Decision of court

Major Human Rights Violations Related to the Conflict:

No items found.

Whether criminal law was used against protestors:

Reported Details of the Violation:

Date of Violation

Location of Violation

Nature of Protest

No items found.

Government Departments Involved in the Conflict:

PSUs Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Government Authorities for Comments?

LCW contacted Deepak Arya, District Collector, Sagar district for comments. But he did not share any response on the matter. The Tehsildar of Kesali refused to speak with LCW.

Name, Designation and Comment of the Government Authorities Approached

Corporate Parties Involved in the Conflict:

Did LCW Approach Corporate Parties for Comments?

Communities/Local Organisations in the Conflict:

Resources Related to Conflict

  • News Articles Related to the Conflict:
  • Documents Related to the Conflict:
  • Links Related to the Conflict:

Image Credit:  

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Updated By

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