golden yug
[ July 18, 2017 ] BDO/AC (D) incompetent to issue any building permission in jurisdiction of JDA In a recent notice by JDA for the information of general public where by the jurisdiction of JDA has been enhanced by bringing 324 revenue villages under its control maintaining that these revenue villages fall under the ambit of Master Plan 2032 vide SRO 90 of 3-3-2017. With this JDA claims its jurisdiction extended up to village Chak-Mahani on Akhnoor road, village Kullian on RS Pura Road, Ban Toll Plaza on Jammu-Srinagar Highway and village Sapwal towards Samba District near DC office. JDA has enjoined upon all the residents of entire 324 villages including limits of JMC/Municipal Committees to remove all the violations unauthorized/illegal constructions, encroachments etc failing which stringent action shall be initiated. It further directed that all constructions to be raised only after seeking proper permissions from the competent authorities. The rural development authorities like BDO/AC (D) are not competent to issue any building permission in the jurisdiction of Development Authority and if any bank sanctions loan on the basis of such permission, the same is illegal and invalid. The public is further intimated that in case they have any complaint of violation of master plan in their areas, they can lodge complaint on email vcjda@rediffmail.com.It deserves mentioning here that in compliance to the orders of Division Bench of J&K High Court in regard to encroachments, the Jammu Development Authority (JDA) had initiated a major crackdown against the land mafia and encroachers of state/JDA land in and around Jammu including posh localities.Pertinently Division Bench responding a PIL filed in this regard took serious notice of it and directed the Jammu Development Authority (JDA) in 2014 to get the land retrieved but no substantial progress was made in this regard. Following which Vice Chairman JDA soon after assuming the charge had asked the Director Land Management JDA and Collector Land Acquisition to chalk-out the comprehensive plan for retrieving the land from the encroachers and getting protected it by raising fencing and boundary pillars. Prior to take action in this regard, the JDA authorities had requested Court for ensuring security to its employees to achieve the goal and the High Court directed the Inspector General of Police Jammu to provide due security.Accordingly the police department as per instructions of Inspector General of Police provided protection to JDA and the Khilafwarzi section which started its first massive anti encroachment operation in Sidhra where approx 100 of kanals of land was allegedly encroached unauthorized manner by land mafia.The Vice Chairman JDA maintained that anti encroachment shall continue till every inch of state/JDA land gets indentified, demarcated and retrieved back from the illegal possession.Khilafwarzi (enforcement wing) section under Director Land Management JDA has been directed to act tough against the encroachers irrespective of their influence or status. They have asked to lodge formal FIRs with respective Police stations.The Deputy Chief Minister, J&K who is in-charge Minister of Housing & Urban Development Department has also instructed JDA to retrieve all JDA land and take strongest action against the land encroachers.Government has already enacted an act, ‘The Jammu and Kashmir Prohibition or Conversion of Agricultural Land for Non-Agricultural Purposes Act, 2011´, to arrest the menace of conversion of Agricultural land for non-agricultural purposes strictly in the State. Section 133-A of the J&K Land Revenue Act, also empowers the Revenue Authorities to keep check on the conversion of land.Moreover Govt also ordered that Patwaris and other revenue officials would receive their monthly salaries only after they certify that no agricultural land in their respective areas has been converted for commercial or residential purposes. However, keeping in view the developmental activities like construction of roads, bridges, acquisition of land for Railways and other public purposes, lot of unavoidable conversion has taken place during the last few years. Despite presence of stringent legislation, there are instances where illegal conversion of agricultural land has taken place. This has mainly occurred due to non-existence of a comprehensive housing policy in the state. As and when such a policy comes into force such instances will automatically get checked. Un-authorised conversion of agricultural land, is mainly taking place in and around urban areas and its sub-urbs, whereas it is nominal in rural areas. Along the National Highway, the conversion of agricultural land for non-agricultural purposes is due to the commercial potential of the said land, as people generally tend to adopt such activities which are more profitable. However, as compared to the quantum of agricultural land which has been acquired for various public purposes throughout the state the conversion for a private purpose is much less. Although, good quantum of agricultural land has been converted for non-agricultural purposes, but it is also a fact that all such conversions are not illegal because in a good number of cases, the permissions have been obtained from the competent authority for such conversions.So far as section 28-A of the Agrarian Reforms Act is converted; the purpose of the said section is to check the alienation of land vested with the tillers under the said Act. Under the said section, it has clearly been envisaged that in case of any alienation in contravention of the provisions of the said Act, the Tehsildar (Assistant Collector Ist Class) is competent to escheat the said land to state. In order to ensure that illegal conversion does not take place the instructions stand already issued to all the revenue field agencies to implement the land laws in letter and spirit and serious efforts are being made to check the illegal conversion of agricultural land to the maximum possible extent. there are however, various reasons for the conversion, which include acquisition of land for various important projects of public importance like Roads, Hydro-Power Projects, Industrial Estates, Non-existence of a comprehensive housing policy, increase in the number of nuclear families, manifold increase in population, fragmentation of joint families, migration of rural population towards Urban/semi Urban areas and shifting of agricultural activity towards horticulture and other cash crops.Various laws are in place in the State which prohibit or restrict conversion of agricultural land for non-agricultural purposes. However, a need has been felt for a comprehensive review of existing laws on land use and for making a stricter law on the subject which makes the implementing agencies accountable and also provide for appropriate land use policy for conservation of land, water bodies and ecosystem besides being economically viable and socially acceptable. For this purpose a High Powered Committee comprising of Hon’ble Minister for Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, Hon’ble Minister for Agriculture and Hon’ble Minister for Revenue has been constituted which discussed pros and cons of the issue in various meetings and a draft legislation on the subject has been prepared styled as “The Jammu and Kashmir Prohibition on Conversion of Agriculture Land for Non Agricultural Purposes Bill”.