Tuesday 24 October 2017

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Land Titles - A messy affair in Goa

 

One column is for "occupants". Another is dedicated to "tenants" and the third is for "other rights". There is no column for "OWNERS". Poor fellows.


Goa is up for grabs. Almost everyone in the world wants to own a piece of Goan real estate. There is a mad rush. Land prices, naturally, are moving towards the heavens. Land, therefore, has become greedy speculators' first preference for investment. But what about the title to the land up for sale? A piece of heaven would perhaps come with guaranteed Title. But not every piece of Goan Real Estate.

Let us begin with the Record of Rights prepared under the Land Revenue Code, 1968.The primary purpose of this Act was to map the entire territory of Goa and to prepare a data bank of lands under various uses with reference to its occupants, holders, tenants and other right holders. What resulted after a massive exercise of Survey is a compilation of what is known as Form nos I & XIV and corresponding Survey maps. These are now easily available through information kiosks and Survey offices.  Thanks to digitization.

Form I & XIV has a few columns. One column is for "occupants". Another is dedicated to "tenants" and the third is for "other rights". There is no column for "OWNERS". Poor fellows.

And why no column for Owners you may ask and the answer is Land Revenue Code was not meant to compile Titles to lands but only to facilitate collection of Land Revenue as and when levied. It is now 40 years since this Code was passed. Governments have forgotten that lands in Goa are able to yield revenue.

The Portuguese have left for us some Land Records in the form of Description numbers and Inscription numbers which describe a given piece of land with reference to its location, boundaries and its ownership. Parts of Goa were also surveyed during their tenure. Survey maps of all lands surveyed by the Portuguese are also available. Besides there are records of the old Revenue Department or Fazenda. Communidades, Devasthans and Churches also have their own records. Records of all registered conveyances are also available. All these records were virtually ignored when so called Record of Rights were prepared under the Land Revenue Code.

Result is obvious. The Record of Rights in Form I & XIV have no relation to the old records. It is difficult to correlate a property bearing a certain Survey and subdivision number with the old Description and Inscription or the old maps available with the Portuguese Archives in Goa.

Under such circumstances due diligence exercise is a nightmare for the lawyers and prospective buyers of properties in Goa.

The confusion is further compounded by Land Reform Laws like the Tenancy and Mundkar Acts. Tenants of Agricultural lands were declared to have become deemed owners of the lands under their cultivation. Mundakars were given a right to purchase their dwelling houses. The process of transfer of title prescribed under these laws has not been completed. To that extent the Record of Rights are incomplete.

Process of Mutation of Records of Rights is clumsy. Rights in several properties have devolved upon successors and transferees. Properties have been subdivided and built upon. New roads, canals bridges, gardens, schools and Government buildings have been constructed. Record of Rights and Survey plans do not reflect any of these changes. Updating of Records should have been a continuous process. Authorities have abdicated their responsibility of maintaining updated records of rights. 

Records in form I & XIV and corresponding survey maps have presumptive value. They are not proof of Title. There is therefore no guarantee that the title sought to be conveyed based on any of the above referred to documents will be a valid title.

Remedy lies in State Guaranteed Property Title. An altogether new law needs to be enacted and implemented in letter and spirit. What should be the nature and scope of such a law? Will lawyers, jurists and others interested in this issue care to respond? 




Dear Sir

As mentioned above there Portuguese archive has documents / records of the properties.

I am looking for such document where the title of my property is missing / cannot be found in the land records. It is available under the survey records. This is an ancestral property and all i have is an inventory from 1945 where the succession of the property was done. But this inventory is not enough me for the title. So i am looking for the older documents of the property. Where can i find them. I ave triend in the archaeological& records dept panaji with no success.

Please advise.

 
Benny |

What is Undertable Charge....

For Sanad/Approvals/Mutation/Partition etcccc

Is It Legal or Cumpalsary

If Its Legal How To Expose Them.... Plz Explain

Coz from day one In My feild Im Having Problems Coz if this Corrupt Government Employees

Media is Biggest source To Expose them

If we expose 2 another 10 will Forget Corruption

Please Advice

Thnx_Regards

 
Sudarshan mishra |

Thought-provoking ideas , I am thankful for the insight - Does anyone know where I might get ahold of a sample TREC 20-7 example to work with ?

 
althea artwood |

Hello Sir

I have just found that after a mutation case no LRC/PART/59/2013/3118 dated 12/09/2013- mutation no 11793. A relative has managed to put his name and his mothers name on our side of the property in form no I & XIV. How was it possible for him to do this without our consent or knowledge. What can be done now to rectify it. There is a doubt that he is trying to sell it ASAP. What should be my next course of action.

Thanking you

Francis

 
Francis Sequeira |

I WISH TO BUY A LAND IN GOA .HOW CAN OR WHO CAN ACERTAIN ME THAT THE PROPERTY IS UNDISPUTED?

 
JAI |

My mother bought an apartment, in my name, in Calangute, northern Goa some years ago. I have lived away from India since February 1997, when I moved to the UK. However, at that time, I signed a power of attorney through one of the local solicitors in Mumbai at the time, giving my brother power to act in all matters legal, including the purchase or sale of property. My mother is now looking to sell the apartment in Goa and wants me to get involved in the sale of said apartment. Could you please let me know if this is possible, given that I have signed over to my brother powers of attorney?

 
Sandra Noronha |

Hello Sir,

My Name is Aurelian D'souza. I have just found some old land records in my house belonging to the year 1936, in the name of ancestors in Portuguese Language. In the year, 1991, the land got transferred in my father's name. but, the Land is occupied by some tenants. My Parents don't remember the location of the land. It is Somewhere in Goa.

The Title of the Agreement States, "Comunidades".

I need your help. i have a few queries.

1) who is the rightful owner of the land? the tenant or my family? i don't exactly remember when did the tenants start living on the land. but, they used to grow agricultural products on it, and used to send us rice and fruits, till upto 20 years back.

2) Since the language of the agreement is Portuguese, where can i translate the language from?

3) Since we do not know the location of the land, how can i find the land?

 
Aurelian D'souza |

Thats absolutely true, government of goa is changed now and we need change in the rules and regultions of government office. new government should enforce new rules to all the departments and change the way it is misshandled, including the departments involved in providing the land info. i am of the opinion that though portuguese rules and land records were hand written, but were perfect and easy to trace, and any change in the property ownership or even hypothication or lease was systamatically reflected in fazanda and also at land registrationoffice of the concelho.

Secondly and importantly...... Archives of Goa is useless and insufficicent and incapable of providing records as it is overburdened with lazy abundant workers, who come there jus to seat and pass comments and do nothing except by instructing the people who come there to how they should handle the book. I have seen the worker there, it takes thirty minutes to bring one book and time is very restricted which takes months to find a single property record. This is due to negligence of government since 1961 afte goa liberation who never bothered to fina an alternative to preserve this vital records in proper manner or translate the same in to english or even dint try to ammend proper land revenue code. Government doesnt know how much land they themselves has lost due to this negligence as the govnt departments has lost their land records and holdings in the state of goa by not maintaining proper systamTIC Lnd records e.g forest department of goa doesnt know how much land they are holding and how much is genuinely private forests in goa..... It looks weired when someone calls it private forest unless they grabbed government land by fudging the documents by either destroying from forest depRTMENT OR FROM land rgistration department or archives. fudging and destroying of land records were on rampage till abou

t 2005 and afte the land boom in goa the records were carefully managed and preserved but it was too late than. People are suffering due to negligence and lazy approqch of government to preserve such vital records of people of goa.

FOR CHANGE AND REARRANGING THIS DATA?

. Govt should request portuguese government to send this data as it is already preserved there in portugal, so we get true data and many people who lost the lands can get back this land.

. Or governement should go back to portuguese land revenue code and correlate the old records with present form 1 and 14, which will allow the government to formulate new land revenue code.

. Or government should ammend new land revenue code on basisi of new survey which is carried out recently, and new form 1and 14 or any kind of new document which gives entire title flow of the land in one document. Like the one in maharashtra. ..... Pher Phaar....

Finally Parreekar can do all this if he seriously thinking about the change in Goa..... Its Possible.... All the Best Sir.....

 
Welcome |

Sir,

You are quite right and knowledgeable in all matters of Law, but would like to point out a few things.

Firstly in India as a matter of fact mostly even a Sale deed holder to a land that is freehold, is just a occupant and not the absolute owner of Land, this is the Law in force in our country and anyone who thinks that he is the absolute owner of his property is requested to once more revisit his or her title.

In Goa, the old records of rights can be easily cross verified if one can track through the records in the archives department the old title documents, one can do so by checking for the Old survey numbers in the Land & Survey Department and one can also get copies of the Revenue records And the Survey records of the pre-Portuguese era even if the land owners don't have any old doc's...

Will be sure if they look they can themselves find a good lawyer or maybe themselves find the required records, they might need the help of a person who can read Portuguese...

Yes the inept handling of the old records and the unavailability of documents and equipment and the political will to keep the records straight has lead to many records being destroyed or being fudged but then if a person can prove uninterrupted and unchallenged peaceful possession of a property then normally unless some can come with documents to challenge the title then one can get him self declared as the owner through court by means of adverse possession of the property even if he was not the original owner and if he claims to the ownership of the place and if there is no challenge to his claim then he is presumed to be the owner and the same is recorded as the occupant in the Form 1 & 14, if the name was recorded earlier in the same form and has been so for over 30 years then one has to only prove further title if that person is no more, though if older records can be produced or if not produced then atleast investigated to check if there is no other owner.

Now atleast the records have been scanned and are available with the Land & Survey Department and the Department of Archives...

If the property in question is a major one then if one can afford it then if one engages the services of a good lawyer in Portugal or one here who has some link there, then one can even get records many times from the archives out there...

Alvara / Aframentos / Grants can form part of the records, but there are many more: like The Incription/Description or the Matriz certificates or the Registro de Agrimensor / the Field Register / the old Cadastral Plans etc etc...

Any way if the govt of Goa seriously wants it can send a request to the Govt of Portugal and get the rights of ownership preserved in their archives...

Feel Mr Khalap who is a respected and influential person should try to get these reforms pushed through, even by writting about it he has helped the cause a lot...

Will request the Govt to take note of the same and to try and simplify the process of mutation so that genuine people are not made to run pillar to post...

Regards,

Amit

 
Amit Chopra |

Dear Mr Khalap,

Appreciate your thought initiatives on the subject. I feel whatever irrepairable damage is caused to the lands / owners / estado has been done. I feel rather than keeping the old land records in custody of the Government, they should be scanned and be made available to the people. Many litigations would see the light of the day. Its worth for the Govt to spend considerable budget on getting the old land records translated and incorporate into the present record of rights,

Alvara / Aframentos / grants form major part of the records. Request you to consider the suggestions.

Thanks

 
Upendra Joshi |

method should be made wherein it is mandatory to attach certified copies of title documents to the purchase/lease deed along with form 1/14. once registered then the deed should be delivered alongwith mutation changes and partition. no serparete procedure for same.matter should end in one office.

the deed itself should be shortened and made more like a check list like how banks do whilst mortgaging ppty/loans rather then paras and paras of unnecessary legal jargon. in fact there has to be a readily available form wherin only details are to be filled.

lease deeds should also be endorsed by the police confirming the exact date of end of lease period so that once the contractual period is over on the particular agreed date the lessee/licensee etc whoever he may be can be vacated - no fuss no litigation.

because --- in present format all deeds are interpreted in any/every manner possible leading to timeless litigations wherein the only gainers are the lawyers.

 
piyush |

Mutation or request to include the new owner's name in form I & XIV

The whole process is lengthy and corrupt.

If no money paid then it can go beyond TWO YEARS and if money paid to all involved like Talathi of Mutation, his office peon, then Circle officer and finally the mamtatdar, then the whole process can be completed in just TWO WEEKS as in the case in Pernem taluka where 3 officers were suspended including dy. collector who is now in Sanguem or Quepem taluka ?

Recently some new changes effected (by Adv. Kalap Committee) and I tell you, it is even worst than before. After several visits my friend submitted a file in January 2010, we were told to come back in March for enquiry.

When visited early this month/March, we were told there are files peding since last June 2009. My friend offered the peon Rs.200, to that he said 'donxim konnak pautat?, ami asat teg zann' (200 not enough, we are 3), so my freind offered Rs.600 then he was told to come back next day for collecting the notices to be sent by registered post to all names appeared in the existing I & XIV. Next stage would be Newspaper publication (in most cases) then the file is transfered to CI (Circle Inspector) who will sit on it for months if you do not pay him. Finally, the fine goes to the Mamlatdar, who again leave the file for incubation unless you visit him personally often several times.

I am talking about Panjim

What you say Mr. Kallap?

Can this be any simpler or quicker or less expensive or with less harassment?

Think about the 'aam admi' and how they are made to go through all this..

Mr. Kalap, I can write a book on what it takes to construct and legally occupy one's new home.

 
JoeGoaUk |

I am a Mandrekar as well and I have closely followed Mr. Khalap as our M.L.A. I am proud of him. When he first became our M.L.A. except for main roads, interior part of our villages were inaccessible. There was no electricity, no power, no water, no tourism, no ferry boats, no bridges, no industries and no higher education.

Whole Goa knows how he fought like a Lion to bring all these amenities to us. Teracol Fort was in ruins. He salvaged it with the help of young artists from Teracol to Keri. Today it has been turned into a Tourist Resort.

He founded the Tuem Industrial Estate and Goa Antibiotics with the help of former Chief Minister Mrs. Shashikala Kakodkar. He got the Tillari Project completed and brought water for irrigation in the villages from Ibrampur to Nagzar and drinking water for the whole Taluka including Mandrem.

He used to organize annual development Conferences, some of which were called Pool (Bridged) Parishads (Conferences). With one obituary speech in Parliament upon the death of N. Sanjiva Reddy, former President of India, he managed to get the Colvale Bridge for us (foundation of this bridge was laid by N. Sanjiva Reddy). He laid the foundation for Siolim Bridge and got it completed. Similarly, the Kiranpani Bridge under construction is his contribution to Mandrem. He brought Higher Secondary School and other Government College to Pernem, Konkan Railway, etc.

Mr. Khalap was India’s finest Law Minister. India Today Magazine adjudged him as one of the most efficient ministers in the Cabinets of Mr. Deva Gowda and Mr. I. K. Gujral. Lawyers and litigants will vouch for his contribution to legal jurisprudence through introduction of Alternative Dispute Redressal System, Lok Adalats, Notaries Act, etc.

Civil Procedure Code (CPC) amendments initiated by him were endorsed by his successors Ram Jethmalani and Arun Jaitley and were adopted by Parliament. That is how we now have vastly amended CPC. Cases are now decided in a matter of months as against years previously……………..Thank you Mr. Khalap.

 
Keshav Mandrekar |

Dear P.K, your comments reveal your ignorance about Mr Khalap. It is quite obvious that staying in U.S you won’t get a clear picture of what is actually going on in Goa. Anyway, I would like to clear your doubts about Mr. Khalap.

In your words “at least Mr. Parrikar has done something for Goa”……ok agreed. Parrikar has done something for Goa but, at what and whose pocket?.... we Goans.

The first IFFI held in Goa under his leadership was a ‘zatra’. Crores of rupees were spent….was it really necessary?. Within few months the Beautiful Panaji City started showing its ugly face. Thanks to the BJP Government who accepted the tenders from contractors after taking bribes.

The BJP Government was also seen distributing substandard quality computers to the students after accepting the highest bid from his crony…Does Mr. Parrikar has an explanation for this?

As you have raised the topic of Mapusa Urban Co-operative Bank, I would like to highlight some points too. Every bank has its bad days. This bank also had one….but it was a rumour spread by the BJP Government headed by Mr Parrikar at that time. The Board resigned voluntarily and handed over the Bank to Mr. Parrikar. Mr Parrikar then appointed two of his loyal men as Administrators to look after the affairs of the Bank. They could do precious little for the Bank. But when the actual elections of the Bank took place, the administrators and their ‘chamchas’ were mere spectators when all the 11 candidates under the leadership of Mr. Khalap were declared winners. This was only when at the last moment that Mr. Parrikar must have realized that he was going on the wrong track and must have stepped down.

In your words “what have you done as a law Minister” only reveals your ignorance about Mr Khalap. Mr Khalap was the only Minister who was quoted as ‘efficient Minister’ now and again by the Dy. Speaker of the Lok Sabha Ms. Najma Hebtulla during his regime as a Union Law Minister. Mr Khalap introduced the Lok Adalat through out the country which is still prevailing and still going strong. Mr. Khalap reformed the Civil Procedure Code thoroughly for the first time. Thousands of cases which were pending earlier have been decided. Mr Khalap also wanted to transform Goa into the Cyber City. But this plan was also erased by Mr Parrikar….why?..........God only knows……..Mr Parrikar being an ITTtian knew about the development of Goa if the IT Habitat was launched…thousands of locals would have got jobs….but may be Mr Parrikar didn’t want to add a feather in Mr Khalap’s cap.

Leave all above aside and please tell me whethet it was right on part of Mr. Parrikar to ignore great scientist like Dr. Mashelkar and the members of Infotech Council like Mr K. Narayan Murthy of Infosys, Mr Rajendra Powar of NIIT, Dr Vijay Bhatkar ( Param Computer fame) of C-DAC, Prof. Inderesan of IIT Kanpur, Mr Devang Mehta of NASSCOM, the former Director General of National Informatics Center etc.

Mr P.K, I hope I have been successful to some extent in changing your views about Mr. Khalap.

………………..Sumiksha Shetgaonkar, Morjim.

 
Sumiksha Shetgaonkar |

Mr. Kalap, you had been the union minister for law as well as you had been a minister in Goa Govt. You are lamenting about the state of affaires of the Land record. Being in the helm of affaires of the state, you have deliverd nothing to the Goans. You only enjoyed at the Goan cost. You cry now because you have no chair to warm up in Govt. People like you have destroyed our Goa. Now you come with proposal to improve the Panchyat legislation that was rejected by the Governor. Your proposal to amend the Panchyat Raj Act was a laughing stock of the town. You guys have to retire from active political life and enjoy the retirement money you get from the hard-earned money of the Goan people.

 
Bruno Gomes |

Unfortunately our country is a land with too many legislations but very very poor rate of following/enforcing the legislations! Believe me there are regulations of obtaining licences for selling bananas and coconuts. The abnormal delays in delivery of justice unfortunately reduce the laws as a tools of harassment to the law abiding middle class citizens and the rich and powerful as well as the poor people are easily able to flout the laws and get away easily! Is this not the realistic picture of the present day situation?

 
Vishwas Prabhudesai |

So what's the best remedy for this?

 
Nilesh Madhukar Shetgaonkar |

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Ramakant Khalap

Adv Ramakant Khalap is former Chairman of the Goa State Law Commission. Being a veteran politician of Goa, he has served the political arena as the union law minister as well as Goa’s deputy chief minister and the opposition leader in the past. He also takes keen interest in literature and cultural activities while heading several institutions, especially in the field of Marathi literature.

 

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