Sunday, August 5, 2007

land reforms in andhra pradesh

Land Reforms
5. At present, tenancies are regulated under separate laws in the two regions of Andhra
Pradesh, namely, the Telangana area and the Andhra area. The legislation applicable to Telangana
area (the Hyderabad Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act) provides for: —
(1) fixation of rent at 1 /4th of the gross produce for irrigated lands, other than well irrigated
lands and 1 /5th in other cases or 3 to 5 times the land revenue (according to class of soil),
whichever is less;
(2) fixity of tenure for protected tenants subject to landlord's right to resume land for personal
cultivation up to 3 family holdings. The tenant, however, is to retain generally a basic
holding or half of his land whichever is less;
(3) an optional right of purchase of ownership of non-resumable lands for protected tenants.
This right is subject to the condition that a protected tenant could not purchase more than
one family holding and that the land owner is left with two family holdings (a family
holding varies from 4 to 60 acres). In addition the law provides for suo motu action for
transfer of ownership to protected tenants.
The legislation obtaining in Andhra area (the Andhra Tenancy Act) is of an interim nature. It
provides for stay of ejectments and fixation of rent at 50 per cent of the gross produce for irrigated
lands, 28.1/3 per cent for lands irrigated by baling and 45 per cent for dry lands.
The law relating to ceiling (Andhra Pradesh Ceiling on Agricultural Holdings Act, 1961) which
is applicable to both the regions, provides for ceilings on existing holdings at 4} family holdings
and on future acquisition at 3 family holdings (a family holding varies from 6 to 72 acres). The
ceiling law was brought into force with effect from June 1, 1961. There is no provision dealing with
the problem of transfers.
In 1960, the Government of Andhra Pradesh introduced a new Bill which provides for a
unified tenancy law for the whole of Andhra Pradesh. The Bill lapsed in 1961 due to dissolution of
the Assembly on the eve of general elections and a fresh Bill was introduced later in 1962, which
was reported upon by Joint Select Committee of the State Legislature in 1964. Its provisions were
deficient in several respects. The Regional Committee for Telangana area has disagreed with the
Bill and has suggested that the Hyderabad Act should be extended to the Andhra area also; and if it
was not possible, there should be separate laws for the two regions. The matter is under the
consideration of the State Government.
6. The state of implementation of land reforms has been examined in the report submitted by
Shri Ameer Raza. Joint Secretary. Planning Commission in February. 1965 (vide Annexure I).
There were several gaps in the Hyderabad law: —
(a) Ordinary tenants do not enjoy the rights given to protected tenants. They number 1.34 lakhs
and occupy an area of 8.58 lakh acres. Protected tenants number 2.99 lakhs and hold 16.57
lakh acres.
(b) Tenants' right to ownership is much limited in scope as the bulk of the leased area is
comprised within the two family holdings to be left with the owner; and
(c) Surrenders are not properly regulated.
The provision for suo motu action for transfer of ownership to tenants was enforced in one
district and a taluka of another district. Further implementation was stayed on the reorganisation of
States in 1956.
In Andhra where substantial areas were cultivated through tenants and share croppers,
particularly in the coastal districts, they were generally not recorded. The interim law i.e.. the
Andhra Tenancy Act has been ineffective. A tenant holds at the will of the landlord and may not
offer any resistance if the landlord desired to dispossess him. The prevailing rent was half the gross
produce and in case of fertile lands it was as high as two-thirds of the produce As regards ceilings,
no surplus land has yet been taken possession of but it is estimated that the surplus area is likely to
be less than 0.2 per cent of the cultivated area. The law has thus only a limited significance.
7. The Implementation Committee reviewed matters relating to land reforms in Andhra Pradesh
on July 21, 1966 (vide Annexure III). As the Chief Minister was not pre- sent, consideration of
necessary legislative measures was not taken up. The Committee, how- ever, advised that it would
be desirable to organise a special drive for the preparation of records of tenants in Andhra area and
to give presumptive evidence value to the record but that even without necessary legislative
provision the record should be useful. To assist in the preparation of records tri-partite committees
should be set up. The Committee also emphasised that in view of the importance of the programme
of consolidation of holdings to agricultural production, it was desirable that it should be pursued
with vigour in the Telangana area and also initiated in the Andhra area and that adequate financial
provision for this should be made in the Fourth Plan
Officers' Reports on Implementation of Land Reforms—Statewise
1. Report of Shri Ameer Raza, Joint Secretary, Planning Commission on implementation of Land
Reforms in Andhra Pradesh
1. Andhra Pradesh may be divided broadly into 2 areas for purposes of land reform, namely,
the Telangana area and the Andhra area.
2. With regard to abolition of intermediaries, tenancy reforms and land records, there are
different systems in the two areas. Consolidation of holdings has been taken up only in the
Telangana area under a law which applies to that area only. Legislation has yet to be enacted in the
Andhra area.
3. The law relating to ceilings is, however, common to both the regions, namely, the Andhra
Pradesh Ceiling on Agricultural Holdings Act 1961 'which over-rides the provisions of the Andhra
Pradesh (Telangana area) Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act, 1950 in relation to ceilings.
4. The following statement shows the area and the population of two regions:—
Number of
Number of
Area (in 000
Population (in
Telangana area 9 10,576 25,243 127
Andhra area 11 15,202 31,019 233
Total 20 25,778 50,202 310
Abolition of Intermediaries
Telangana area
5. Under the Hyderabad (Abolition of Jagirs) Regulation of 1949 (read with Hyderabad Jagirs
(Commutation) Regulation of 1950) all the jagirs numbering 951 and covering an area of
approximately 12,000 square miles have been abolished. The total estimated compensation for
abolition of jagirs in Telangana area is Rs.1,078 lakhs. Out of this amount Rs.963 lakhs have been
paid upto the end of March, 1964, leaving a balance of Rs.115 lakhs payable during the remaining
period upto the end of March 1970.
6. For the abolition of inams (other than charitable or religious institutions or village service
inams) legislation was enacted in 1954, namely, the Hyderabad Abolition of Inams Act 1955 (Act
VIII of 1955). This Act came into force on 20th July, 1955, and Inams stood abolished. As the
legislation was considered defective (mainly with regard to registration of inamdars as occupants
on lands under the possession of various categories of tenants) and some basic amendments were
under consideration its implementation was postponed.
7. Complete information regarding the number and the area of inams is not readily available.
The position in four districts is as below: —
District Number of inams Area
Medak 18,793 1,17,596 acres
N.A. 1,18,000 acres
Warrangal 7,400 42,300 acres
Karimnagar 4,415 12,955 acres
8. Although many years have passed, an amendment has not yet been enacted—a Bill has been
introduced in the State Legisla ture. It is necessary to expedite the process and complete the entire
work of abolition of intermediaries as early as possible.
Andhra Area
9. The following statement shows the present position regarding the abolition of intermediaries
in Andhra area: —
Total Abolished up to 30-9-61
No. of zamindari estates 1,049 plus 6,774 sub-divided estate 1,047 plus 6,769 sub-divided estate
No. of inam estates . 2,532 2,306
10. The approximate area of all categories of estates is about 16.289 square miles. Information
was not readily available regarding the area which vested in the Government as a result of abolition
and the areas which were settled with the intermediaries and tenants respectively. J
11. Estimated compensation under the Andhra Pradesh (Andhra area) Estates (Abolition and
Conversion into Ryotwari) Act. 1948 is approximately Us. 12 crores and the amount paid is
approximately about Rs.6 crores.
12. It will be observed that the abolition of intermediaries has been practically completed and
only a very few remain. However, it is desirable to complete the process in respect of the remaining
few also as early as possible and thus to complete the implementation of the Andhra Pradesh
(Andhra area) Estates (Abolition "and conversion into Ryotwari) Act, which was enacted as far
back as 1948.
13. It appears that so far about half the estimated amount of compensation has been paid. Since
delays in payment cause much distress to the intermediaries it would be desirable to review the
existing position and expedite payments wherever possible.
14. The number of minor inams falling under the Andhra Inams (Abolition and Con- version
into Ryotwari) Act, 1956 is over 11 lakhs. About 10 lakh inams have been abolish- ed and ryotwari
pattas have been granted. It is necessary to complete the work of abolition of the remaining inams
at an early date.
15. There is a small number of intermediaries in the scheduled areas also. Legislation for their
abolition has yet to be enacted.
Tenancy Reforms Telangana Area
16. The Andhra Pradesh (Telangana area) Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act, 1950 (Act XXI
of 1951) applies to this area. This law which was enacted by the Hyderabad Government before the
formation of the State of Andhra Pradesh is a comprehensive measure containing provisions for the
fixation of maximum rent, security of tenure, purchase of ownership by protected tenants, ceiling
on holdings and consolidation of holdings and prevention of fragmentation. (By a subsequent
amendment, provisions regarding consolidation of holdings and prevention of fragmentation were
omitted from this Act and incorporated in a separate Act. the Hyderabad Prevention of
Fragmentation and Consolidation of Holdings Act. 1956. With regard to ceiling, a separate law
called the Andhra Pradesh Ceiling on Agricultural Holdings Act, 1961 has been enacted. The
provisions of this law over-ride the provisions of the Hyderabad law).
17. The Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act provides for maximum rent varying generally
from 3 to 5 times the land revenue. The rent shall not in any case exceed 1/4th in the case of
irrigated lands (other than lands under wells) and 1/5th of the produce in respect of other classes of
18. Tenants existing at the commencement of the Act were divided into two classes, namely,
protected tenants (who had been in continuous possession for 6 years on various dates) and
ordinary tenants. Both classes of tenants arc liable to ejectment on certain special grounds such as
failure to pay rent, destruction or permanent injury to land, sub-division or sub- leasing, etc. In
addition ordinary tenants are»liable to ejectment on the expiry of the period of lease. Protected
tenants, on the other hand, are generally not liable to ejectment except in exercise of the landowners
right to resume land for personal cultivation. The land- owner is entitled to resume land upto 3
family holdings. (A family holding varies between 4 to 6U acres). He is not, however, entitled to
resume more than a family holding unless income by the cultivation of such land will be the main
source of his income for his maintenance. Resumption is subject to the condition that a protected
tenant will retain an area equal to a basic holding i.e., one-third of the family holding) or half his
land whichever is less. An owner owning a basic holding or less is, however, entitled to resume the
entire area.
19. A landlord was to reserve the land he wished to resume for personal cultivation before 12-
9-1957 and exercise the actual right of resumption before 4th February, 1959.
20. By a subsequent amendment, tenants holding land from larger land holders owning a total
area of more than 3 family holdings were also made protected tenants.
21. Hyderabad Government had, after the enactment of the law, undertaken land census
operations and the re-organisation of the record of rights. The number of persons recorded as
protected tenants in the area now included in Andhra Pradesh was about 3.3 lakhs. ]"he entries were
subsequently revised as representations were received that they were, in many cases, wrong. .
22. Under section 38, protected tenants were given an optional right of purchase of ownership
of non-resumable land on payment of compensation varying from 6 to 15 limes the rent. This right
of purchase was subject to a number of restrictions, namely, (i) a protected tenant could not
purchase more than one family holding including any other land owned by him (ii) the land holder
should be left with an area equal to 2 family holdings (i.e. an area varying from 8 to 120 ordinary
23. In addition, the protected tenant could also purchase the owner's land if the owner agreed to
relinquish it or to forego the restrictions on the right of purchase mentioned above (sections 38A,
38B and 38D).
24. As the voluntary rights of purchase is generally exercised on a small scale, the law also
provided for conferment of ownership of non-resumable land upon protected tenants by a
notification under section 38E.
25. It appears that under section 38, 14,284 protected tenants purchased an area of about
1,05,533 acres upto October 1964.
26. Information is not available about the number of tenants who purchased ownership rights
under sections 38-A and 38-D.
27. A notification was issued under section 38-E on 1-11-1955 by the then Hyderabad
Government for Khamam and Mulug Taluk of Warrangal district. (Andhra Pradesh Government
have not issued arty notification under this section in respect of the remaining districts of
Telangana). Under this section 18.672 protected tenants became owners.
28. There may also have been cases where purchases were made by private negotiations.
Information is not available regarding such purchases.
29. According to information collected by the Andhra Pradesh Government in 1963. 3,18,608
protected tenants were still recorded in the revenue records in respect of 21,15,518 acres. The
figure of 3,18,608 protected tenants still recorded in possession when added to the estimated
number of protected tenants who have purchased ownership, exceeds the total number of protected
tenants recorded in the time of the Hyderabad Government. However, the discrepancy is, perhaps,
due to the fact that many protected tenants who have purchased their lands have not yet made full
payment and are still recorded as protected tenants.
30. In this connection it may be noted that Prof. Khusro, then of the Osmania University had
made a study under the auspices of the Research Programmes Committee of the Planning
Commission. This enquiry showed that “A significant degree of evasion is noticeable with
reference to tenancy legislation. It appears that out of the originally created protected tenants in
1951, only 45 per cent still remain to enjoy their protected status while 12 per cent have purchased
their lands and become owner-cultivators, thus fulfilling the intention of the law. 2½ per cent have
been legally evicted, 22 per cent have been illegally thrown out while 17 per cent have voluntarily
surrendered. The so-called voluntary surrenders are more often a subtle form of illegal eviction and
only a proportion of these surrenders is genuine."*
31. It has, however, to be kept in view that the above figures relate to the ex-Hyderabad areas
as a whole. Separate information for the ex-jagir areas of Telangana which is available in the report
shows that 55.5 per cent of the protected tenants still remained in 1954-55, 17.12 per cent had
purchased ownership, making a total of 72.62 per cent. Out of the balance, 3.54 per cent had been
evicted legally, 13.9 per cent had been illegally evicted while 10.61 per cent had voluntarily
surrendered their lands. The information relates to the ex-jagir areas of Telangana. In the Diwani
areas the percentage of protected tenants who had purchased ownership or who still remained in
possession is much larger. Altogether, therefore, for the Telangana as a whole the percentage of
protected tenants who lost possession would be much smaller than for the entire ex-State of
Hyderabad. However, some ejectments of protected tenants would have taken place under the law
and it is likely that there were also, some voluntary surrenders.
32. It would be desirable to undertake a fresh study to ascertain to what extent the protected
tenants who continue to be recorded as such are still actually in possession of their lands and in
how many cases they have lost possession.
33. The number of unprotected tenants, according to information collected in 1963 was
1,34,350 and the area held by them 8,58,211 acres.
34. As regards exercise of the right of resumption, the information available is limited. It has
been reported that 9,394 applications were filed involving an area of about 2.15 lakh acres and that
out of these applications 8,662 have been decided, leaving a balance of 732 cases. Information is
not available separately regarding the number of applications tiled for reservation of land and the
area involved, the number of applications filed for ejectment of protected tenants and the area
involved and the number of cases and the area in respect of which ejectment was ordered. It would
* Economic and Social Effects of Jagirdari Abolition and Land Reforms in Hyderabad p. Kill
also be desirable to ascertain in how many cases ” voluntary surrenders ” were made by protected
and other tenants.
35. It appears that the announcement about the principal provisions of the law of 1950 was
made by the revenue officials with the beat of drum and in the majority of cases certificates of
protected tenancy were given to the protected tenants. But during the course of the years the
knowledge of the provisions of the law seems to have gone dimmer and in the villages visited the
villagers in general and in some cases even the lower officials, such as the patwari and the revenue
inspector seemed to be unaware of the provisions of the law with regard to maximum rent, security,
etc. It would also seem that in some cases persons to whom leases are made are not recorded in the
village records. In fact in one village the patwari himself said that he was in possession of some
area which had previously been held by a protected tenant, but he had not recorded either his own
name or that of the protected tenant in the village records. Also it appears that in some cases the
practice of giving half the produce to the owner still exists and the tenant does not ordinarily resist
the landowner when he wishes to take the land back. It would be desirable to undertake a survey
with regard to the extent of disguised or concealed tenancy, the rents or share of produce generally
paid to the owners and the relative security or insecurity of tenure.
36. It is suggested that a campaign may be undertaken to educate the village people about the
benefits conferred by the law through various methods, such as, large-scale publication and
distribution of leaflets describing the principal provisions of the law in simple language that can be
understood by village people and organisation of meetings covering all the villages, in which the
main provisions of the law are explained in simple language.
37. The lower officials who come into contact with the villagers most frequently, such as
patwaris, revenue inspectors etc., may be carefully trained and educated about the provisions of the
law from time to time and directed to disseminate this knowledge to the villagers.
38. The law requires that every landowner shall give receipt for rent and in case of failure, he is
punishable with a fine up to Rs.100/- [section 96 of the Andhra Pradesh (Telangana Area) Tenancy
and Agricultural Lands Act. 1950. In spite of this law, receipts are generally not given and it
appears that no action has been taken under this section. This section provides penalties for other
offences also but no action appears to have been taken with regard to them either.
39. It is suggested that the higher officials may, during their visits, enquire, in particular, about
the question of receipts for rent given by landlords to tenants and in case of default, action may be
initiated under section 96. They may also check up in particular whether all tenants actually in
possession are duly entered in the khasra pahani and whether the rents actually paid are within the
limits prescribed by law.
Andhra Area
10. The Andhra Tenancy Act, 1956 which applies to the Andhra area, has been ex- tended from
time to time and is only an interim measure providing for fair rents and protection from ejectment
pending the enactment of a comprehensive law.
41. Fair rent has been put at a high level, being 50 per cent of the gross produce for lands under
Government irrigation, 28-1/3 percent where lands are irrigated by baling from Government
irrigation sources and 45 per cent of the gross produce in other cases. In the case of commercial
crops such as, betel, chillies, cotton, sugarcane, etc. also the rent is 45 per cent of the gross produce.
42. Tenants in existence at the commencement of this Act are protected from ejectment till 31st
May, 1965 (except on certain special grounds such as failure to pay rent, destruction or permanent
injury to land. etc.). Similar protection is given td tenants admitted after the commencement of this
Act who would have a minimum term of 6 years and will not be liable to ejectment until 31st May,
1965. (This period has since been extended).
43. Surrenders have not been regulated as recommended in the Plan, leaving a large gap for the
evasion of the law.
44. The provision regarding determination of fair rent does not appear to have been used on
any considerable scale. Information from the beginning of the Act is not available. However, the
information furnished for the last 2 years is as below: —
Opening Balance Receipts Disposal Balance
1963-64 1959 80 87 1952
1964-65 1952 105 57 1998**
The average number of cases instituted during these two years would be less than 100 per year
which comes to less than 10 per district per year. The number of cases instituted in earlier years is
likely to have been much larger. But judging from the rate of disposal and the arrears, the average
number of cases instituted in each district would seem to be negligible as com- pared to the likely
number of tenants.
45. Section 8 provides that in case of failure of crops applications may be made for remission
of rent. The following statement shows the case work under this section: _
Opening Balance Receipts Disposals Balance
1963-64 753 301 247 806
1964-65 upto August 1964 806 21 168 659
46. It is noted that even under this section where it is desirable to pass orders as quickly as
possible, there are heavy arrears. (It is quite likely that in many such cases stay orders may have
been passed, but that does not obviate the need for speedy decision).
47. Section 13 provides for termination of tenancy on certain special grounds, such as, failure
to pay rent, destruction or permanent injury to the land, subletting the land, willful denial of the
landlord's title, etc. Information regarding the number of cases filed and disposed of is shown
Opening Balance Receipts Disposals Balance
1963-64 11,116 1.753 1,616 11,253
1964-65 upto August 1 1,.2.53 659 673 11,239
48. However, information is not available about the earlier years or about the cases in which
and the area for which tenants were ejected under different provisions of this section. The number
of cases pending is very high.
** There appears to be a slight discrepancy in the statement as the balance would be 2,000, if the disposal is 57.
49. For the implementation of this Act some additional staff was appointed during 1956-57 in
certain districts. At present there are a few additional deputy tehsildars in Guntur district but there
is no additional staff anywhere else. Such information as is available about case work would seem
to indicate that not much use has been made of the various provisions of this Act, but out of such
cases as were instituted there are arrears pending.
50. It will be observed that the law is of an interim nature and originally gave protection for
only 3 years. It was later extended from time to time. An interim law of this nature is generally
difficult to enforce as it would not ordinarily create enthusiasm among the tenants or inspire them
with feelings of strength or confidence to claim their rights against the interests of the landlords. As
the tenants are generally not recorded in the village records in Andhra area they would have little
documentary evidence to show that they were admitted to tenancy or were in possession of land.
There is no provision obliging the land- lord to give receipt. In a situation such as this, one would
not expect the law to be effective, either with regard to the level of rent or security. In the villages
visited, it was freely admitted that the prevailing rent was half the gross produce. Though in some
cases fixed rents are also charged. It was further mentioned that in cases of fertile land, the
landlord's share of the produce may be as high as two-thirds of the gross produce. The tenant
generally hold's the land for only as long as the landlord is willing and if the landlord desires to
dispossess him, the tenant would not ordinarily offer any resistance. However, in order to ascertain
the actual situation with regard to rent and security in the bulk of the villages in Andhra area, it
would be necessary to undertake case studies in some representative villages. It is suggested that
such case studies may be taken up as early as possible.
51. As this jaw is only of an interim nature, the enactment of a comprehensive law has been
under the consideration of the State Government since 1958 and there have been much discussion
and correspondence between the State Government and the Planning Commission. Although six
years have passed, the present position is that there is a Bill before the State Legislature but the law
has yet to be enacted. The suggestions made by the Planning Com- mission in regard to this Bill are
contained in Appendix I. The Bill in the present form has several weaknesses.
Ceiling on Land Holdings
52. The Andhra Pradesh Ceiling on Agricultural Holdings Act, 1961 provides for ceiling on
existing holdings at 4½ times the family holding (varying from 27 to 324 acres depending on class
of land) and ceiling on future acquisition at 3 times the family holding (varying from 18 to 216
53. In the case of family consisting of more than 5 members, an additional area of one family
holding (varying from 6 to 72 acres) may be retained by each member in excess of five.
54. The Ceiling Act was brought into force from June 1, 1961.
55. Section 5(1) of the Act provides that every person whose holding exceeds the ceiling area
should tile a declaration within 90 days of the date of enforcement of the Act. Only 4,745
declarations were tiled under this section. Section 5(2) provides for the issue of notice by a
Revenue Divisional Officer requiring any person to furnish a declaratio n of his holding. After issue
of notices by the Revenue Divisional Officers 20,060 declarations were filed making a total of
24,805 declarations in all. Enquiries have been completed in 22,119 cases, 2,686 cases are pending.
56. No surplus land has yet been taken possession of but it is estimated that the surplus area is
likely to be about 52 thousand acres or so which is less than 0.2 per cent of the cultivated area. The
law has thus only a limited significance.
Consolidation of Holdings
57. The Hyderabad Prevention of Fragmentation and Consolidation of Holdings Act, 1955
applies to the Telangana area. There is no legislation for the Andhra area and the work has not been
taken up there. The extension of the Hyderabad law to the Andhra area is said to be under
58. In the second Plan 3.12 lakh acres were consolidated with an expenditure of Rs.11 lakhs.
The target for the Third Plan is 4.50 lakh acres with an outlay of Rs.17.66 lakhs. During the first 3
years of the Third Plan, 4.15 lakh acres have been consolidated with an expenditure of Rs.12.73
59. The law empowers Government to consolidate holdings on a compulsory basis and also
contains the necessary provisions for replanning the village by reserving such lands as arc required
for common purposes. In actual fact, however, the entire work of consolidation consists merely in
persuading a few people to effect mutual exchange of a few plots on a voluntary basis. No attempt
at re-planning of the village has been made nor are all fragmented holdings of the cultivators
brought together into compact blocks. Out of 7.27 lakh acres of land reported to have been
consolidated during the Second and Third Plans, the actual area in which possession was changed
comes to only 36,000 acres. The rest of the area is the unconsolidated area of the village. It is
estimated that during the first three years of the Third Plan about 20.000 acres have actually been
consolidated at a cost of Rs.12.73 lakhs, which comes to something like Rs.63 per acre. It appears
that it takes about 4 to 5 years to consolidate a village. Thus the operation accomplishes very little
though it involves a long period and a heavy cost.
60. No statistics have been collected so far about the number of plots held by different
cultivators before or after consolidation or about any other benefits of consolidation. A suggestion
for evaluation has, however, been made which is under the consideration of the State Government.
It should be seen that consolidation on such a limited scale can confer little real benefit. In the
villages visited it was found that one person with 13 fragments before consolidation continued to
hold 13 fragments even after consolidation even though some of his lands were exchanged by
mutual agreement. In another case, a ma n with 12 fragments was found to have after consolidation
as many as 10 fragments.
61. Consolidation to be really effective should take into account all the land held by a cultivator
and should give him a compact holding in exchange for a number of small fragments. Opportunity
should also be taken for replanning the village and reserving lands that nay be required for common
purposes. The work should be undertaken in close coordination with the Agriculture Department so
that adequate attention is given to soil and water conservation needs. Since some experience of
consolidation has been gained it is suggested that the programme may be taken up on a large scale
in the Fourth Plan and extended to the Andhra area also.
Survey, Settlement and Records Andhra area
62. Andhra area consists of 11 districts with an area of 3,10.19.112 acres and 15.202 villages.
The ryotwari areas had generally been surveyed and settled but the major portion of the zamindari
areas wore unsurveyed. On abolition, survey of about 15,878 square miles had to be taken up. The
work of survey has been completed in about 15,400 sq. miles at a total cost of Rs.3.16 crores.
Survey of a small area of about 400 sq. miles still remains to be done. Detailed cadastral survey and
settlement is also required in respect of nearly 14,000 sq. miles comprised in the agency tracts; the
bulk of this area is, however, under hills and forests and only a small area is under settled
63. The responsibility for maintenance of records rests upon village karnams who also assist
the headman in the collection of land revenue and other Government dues. There are 9,799 karnams
for 15,202 villages. The karnam generally gets a pay of Rs.28/- per month.
64. The supervisory staff consists of revenue inspectors, tehsildars or deputy tehsildars. The
revenue inspector is in charge of a firka consisting of about 20 villages and the tehsildar is incharge
of a taluk which consists of 100 to 200 villages. Above the tehsildar there is a revenue divisional
officer whose jurisdiction extends to 2 to 3 taluks. There are 2 to 3 revenue divisional officer in
each d'strict who work under the guidance of the Collector. Taluk surveyors and district surveyors
are responsible for the correction of maps.
65. The land records include: (i) statement of crops and cultivation field by field (Adangal), (ii)
a register showing the holdings of each individual with details about the tenure and the number of
plots, area and class of land. This is a register of revenue payers and does not include the names of
66. The Adangal, which is a record of possession as well as of crops grown each year, contains
a column in which the names both of the registered holder and the tenants are to be recorded. Till
1958 there was no column in the Adangal to show the name of the tenant or sub-tenant and the rent
payable by him. A revised form was introduced in 1958 in which the name of the tenant and the
rent payable by him is to be recorded. But it appears that instructions for recording the names of
tenants in this column are generally not being followed. It would be desirable to repeat the
instructions previously given regarding the entry of the names of the tenants in the Adangal. In the
first instance, a special operation would be necessary for the revision and completion of the records.
Further, it is suggested that revenue officers may, during their visits to the villages, be asked to
examine in particular the entries relating to the tenants and to check up that all the tenants who are
actually in possession are duly entered in the records. As the village karnams are somewhat under
the influence of the village landowners, it would be desirable to carry out this work of the revision
of records under the direct responsibility of the higher revenue staff, such as revenue inspectors or
tehsildars or higher revenue officials (whose strength may have to be considerably enhanced).
Close watch over the entire operation may be maintained from the headquarters which may inter
alia obtain periodical reports about the progress achieved and the number of tenants and areas
Telangana area
67. The Telangana area comprises 9 districts with an area of 2,52,42,534 acres and 10,576
villages. The village establishment includes 7,800 patwaris who are responsible for the
maintenance of land records (and help the mali patels. about 8,800 in number, in the collection of
land revenue and other Government dues). The supervisory staff includes revenue inspectors, one
for every 33 villages, a naib tehsildar for about 140 villages and a deputy collector for about 500
villages. A district usually consists of 1,300 villages and the collector incharge of the district is
assisted by 2 or 3 deputy collectors.
68. The entire Telangana area had been surveyed. However, the survey was in many cases either
defective or out of date. The total area where survey was necessary comes to about 35,969 sq. miles
out of which about 7,084 sq. miles have been surveyed up-to-date with an expenditure of Rs. 70
lakhs. It is expected to be completed in about 12 to 15 years. In Telangana area as in Andhra, it is
not proposed to take up settlement operations. Where the area of a survey number has changed, it is
proposed to re-calculate the revenue on the basis of old rates.
69. The land records include: —
i). Khasra Pahani, statement of crops and cultivation field by field. It shows the survey
number, area, assessment, the name of the occupant as well as the name of the tenant and
the crop grown,
ii). Chau-fasla which is a register of holding, demand and collectio n.
iii). Registers showing protected tenants and non-protected tenants were prepared after the
enactment of the tenancy law.
70. As mentioned before, the entries of tenants in the village records need to be checked up.
February, 1965,
Security of Tenure
(1) A tenant has been defined to mean a person who cultivates on lease the land belonging
to another person. Under the definition it seems that share-cropping arrangement and partnership
cultivation may not be regarded as tenancies. It was recommended in the Second Five Year Plan
that all such arrangements should be treated as tenancy arrangements and suitable action taken to
confer tenancy rights on persons cultivating lands under suc h arrangements. In the Hyderabad
Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act, a tenant was defined to include a person cultivating any land
belonging to another person if such land was not cultivated personally by the landholder or a
member of his family or through a servant on wages payable in cash or kind but not in crop-share.
It would seem desirable that tenant should be defined on the lines of the Hyderabad Act.
(2) The tenants holding land at the commencement of the Act have been classified into (i)
protected tenants and (ii) ordinary tenants. An ordinary tenant would be tenant-at-will liable to
ejectment from his entire holding on the expiry of the term of lease. A protected tenant would also
be liable to ejectment if the landlord wants to resume the land for personal liable to ejectment from
his entire holding on the expiry of the term of lease. A protected protected tenancy as defined in the
Bill is not likely to accrue to many tenants. The definition suffers from the following defects which
should be removed: —
i). If a landlord holds less than three family holdings, a tenant cannot acquire protected
tenancy rights irrespective of the length of his possession. As benami transactions and
partitions have been going on a large scale over the past several years, most landlords
may have reduced their holdings below three family holdings. Others may do so before
the law comes into effect. Such a condition does not obtain in the legislation of
Hyderabad, Bombay and most of the States and it would be desirable to omit it.
ii). There is a further condition that the protected tenancy would accrue only to the tenants
who have been in continuous possession over a period of six years or more. The record
of rights in Andhra does not show the names of tenants and it will be impossible for
most tenants to prove that they were in continuous pos- session of land for a period of
six years. Even in Bombay, where a complete record of tenancies has been maintained
over a lone period, it has become difficult to enforce such a condition and ultimately
rights were conferred on all tenants irrespective of their length of possession.
iii). Further, a tenant will be required to prove that he was in possession of the same piece of
land over a period of six years or more. It is well known that landlords have been
making frequent changes in the land in possession of tenants. More- over, a tenant may
have come into possession of land through inheritance. His ancestor may have held
possession of the land for over six years but if the pos- session with the tenant himself
was for less than six years, he will not have the right of protected occupacy. To meet the
above difficulties, the following provisions were made in the Hyderabad Act: —
a). if a tenant has held any land from the same landlord in the village for six years, he
acquires protected tenancy status in respect of all the plots which he holds from the
b). the period during which land was held by the predecessor- in- interest is taken into
account in computing the period of six years;
c). every tenant shall be deemed to be protected tenant unless he is held not to be a
protected tenant by the tehsildar or on application made by the land- holder thus
putting the responsibility on the landholder to prove that the person cultivating his
land is not protected tenant.
There is apparently no justification for omitting these safeguards.
iv). Rights of protected tenancy will not accrue in the land if a permanent structure was
erected thereon by the landlord before April 1. 1960. This is a novel provision which
does not obtain in any other legislation. If the tenant acquires ownership of land on
which there is a permanent structure he would pay compensation for the structure. This
restriction is, therefore, wholly uncalled for and should go.
The restrictions proposed in the Andhra Bill on the acquisition of protected tenancy rights
are so extensive that only few tenants are likely to acquire this status. It is now an accepted policy
almost all over the country to confer rights on tenants irrespective of the length of their possession.
In Andhra Pradesh also it would be desirable to do away with the distinction between protected
tenants and ordinary tenants and confer the rights of protected tenants on all tenants holding land at
the commencement of the Act. It may be stated that even a protected tenant is liable to ejectment if
a landlord wants to resume land for personal cultivation. All' that a protected tenant is assured of is
a basic holding, which, is 1/3 of a family holding, and this is the barest, which should be done for
all tenants.
(3) A landlord can resume for personal cultivation the entire area leased to an ordinary
tenant subject of course to his ceiling. In addition he can resume lands leased to protected tenants to
make three family holdings under his personal cultivation subject to the condition that the protected
tenant is left with a basic holding including the area owned by him. This resumption is permitted to
landlords whether they are bonafide cultivators or not. The condition in the Hyderabad Act is that a
landholder cannot resume more than a family holding unless income by the cultivation of such land
will be the main source of income for the land- holder for his maintenance. It would be desirable to
incorporate this provision in the Andhra Bill.
(4) There is no provision in the Bill for disregarding transfers in determining the resumable
and non-resumable lands. In the absence of such a provision it would be possible for the landlords
to extend the scope of resumption by making benami transactions and partitions. In the Bombay
Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act. a provision was. therefore, made that resumption would be
permitted only to a landholder if the leased land stood in the record-of-rights or in any public record
or similar revenue record on January 1, 1952 and thereafter in the name of the landlord himself or
any of his ancestors. Attention has been drawn to this in the Third Five Year Plan also. It would be
desirable to incorporate such 3 condition in the Andhra Bill.
(5) Resumption is permitted, to a landlord, big or small. In the Third Plan it has been
observed that, whatever the conditions, the right to resume land creates uncertainty and tends to
diminish the protection afforded by the legislation. It has been recommended, there- fore, that
except for owners holding land equivalent to a family holding or less, there should be no further
right of resumption. Further, uncertainty for tenants would not be in the interest of the agricultural
development. It would be desirable, therefore, that the provision for resumption should be omitted
except to persons owning a family holding or less.
(6) The landlords are required to make an application within 6 months for reservation of
land to be resumed. They are permitted to choose any lands for reservation and resumption. The
provision could be utilised by landholders to harass tenants with a view to extorting concessions by
choosing inconvenient pieces of lands. As recommended in the Second Plan it will be desirable to
provide that the final selectio n of land to be reserved will be made by the revenue officer to whom
the application is made, in an equitable manner after considering the conveniences of both
landlords and tenants.
(7) In the Telangana area the right of protected tenants will accrue only to the protected
tenants to whom such rights had accrued under the Hyderabad Tenancy & Agricultural Lands Act
before the commencement of this Act. From the available information it appears that quite a large
number of tenants in Telangana did not enjoy protected tenancy status. If any distinction is to be
maintained between protected and ordinary tenants, it would be desirable to provide for conferment
of permanent tenancy rights on ordinary tenants in the Telangana area.
(8) Leases made after the commencement of the Act are to be for a minimum term of six
years. A member of defence services or of civil services can, however, resume the leased land at
the end of one year on his ceasing to be a member of such a service. A special provision for defence
services was considered necessary in national interest with a view to encouraging people to join the
armed forces. This concession has not, however, been extended to members of civil services in
other parts of the country. There is apparently little justificatio n for such a provision for civil
services in Andhra Pradesh.
Ownership for tenants
(9) The right of ownership will be available only to protected tenants in respect of the nonresumable
lands which would generally not exceed a basic holding. It would be desirable to modify
it on the lines of the Hyderabad Act.
Personal cultivation
(10) The expression 'personal cultivation' includes cultivation not only under the supervision
of a member of the family but also under the supervision of any one of the relatives. The
expression 'relative' is not defined. According to the provisions in the Hyderabad Act the
supervision has to be exercised by the landlord either by himself or by any member of his family. A
similar provision is contained in the laws of most of the States also. The provision in this Bill
extends the scope much farther and is liable to abuse It would be desirable to modify it on the lines
of the Hyderabad Act.
(11) The expression 'personal supervision' has not been defined to include residence in the
village or in the nearby village in which the land to be resumed is situated. There is no provision for
contribution of labour either, where the land is resumed from a tenant. The State Government may
reconsider the provisions and modify the definition on the lines suggested in para 14 of Chapter
XIV of the Third Five Year Plan.
(12) A tenant is permitted to surrender land to the landlord at the end of any agricultural
year by giving one month's notice and the landlord can take possession of the entire surrendered
land. It would be recalled that an enquiry made by the Hyderabad Government and the survey
conducted by Research Programmes Committee of the Planning Commission through Prof. Khusro
had indicated that there were large scale evictions through the device of so called 'voluntary
surrenders.' It would be desirable to modify the provisions relating to surrenders on the lines
suggested in para 13 of Chapter XIV of the Third Five Year Plan
(13) The maximum produce rent is 1/4th of produce in the case of irrigable lands other than
lands irrigated by baling water and 1/5th of the gross produce in the case of other lands. There is no
clear provision for commutation of kind rents into cash nor for the fixation of. rents in cash as a
multiple of land revenue or assessment. The following provision has been made in the Hyderabad
Act for the fixation of rent as a multiple of land revenue: —
(a) Dry land of Chalka Soil ----- 4 times the land revenue.
(b) Dry land of black cotton soil ----- 5 times the land revenue.
(c) Baghat ----- 5 times the land revenue.
(d) Wet land
(i) Irrigated by wells ----- 3 times the land revenue,
(ii) Irrigated by other sources ----- 4 times the land revenue.
(e) Classes of land which do not fall Reasonable rent determined having regard
within the clause (a), (b), (c) or to the classes of land and the rent fixed for
(d). the said categories.
Produce rents are difficult to enforce. Besides, as stated in the Third Plan, "with progress in
the rural economy and larger us e of money as the medium of exchange, it would be desirable, as a
matter of policy, to hasten the transition from rents in kind to cash payments. With cultivators
having to purchase a growing proportion of their requirements, such as fertilisers, implements, etc.
in cash, the change-over to cash rents is likely not only to reduce the burden of tenants, but also to
promote investment in agriculture. As suggested in the Second Plan, commutation of rents in kind
into cash payments might be facilitated if. with due regard to conditions of each district, rents could
be declared as multiples of the prevailing land revenue assessment." It is suggested that a provision
should be made for the commutation of produce rents into cash and for their fixation as multiples of
land revenue as in the Hyderabad Act.
Rights in dwelling houses
(14) The tenant is given the right to purchase the site of a dwelling house erected by him on
payment of compensation if the dwelling house was erected with the permission of the landlord. If
it was not erected with the permission of the landlord he has the option either to purchase the
dwelling house on payment of compensation to the tenant or to sell the site to the tenant. It appears
that the provision relates to dwelling houses erected on agricultural lands leased to tenants.
Presumably this provision is not intended to apply to non- resumable lands of protected tenants of
which ownership will stand transferred to them as in that case the site of the non-resumable land
will also stand transferred to the protected tenant. This may be confirmed from the State
Government and necessary clarification made in the provisions. Besides, if the tenant has no other
dwelling house in the village, he should not be liable to eviction from the site under clause 15
unless the tenant's occupation of the site would seriously interfere with the cultivation of the lands
around the site by the land- lord on resumption of lands. In the latter case it would also be
necessary to provide that the tenants should be provided by the landlord with an alternative site
along with compensation for the building.
Where the tenant is permitted to purchase the site, the compensation will presumably be the
full market value of the land. This will throw excessive burden on tenant who may have been in
occupation of the site over a long period. The compensation for site should not exceed the
compensation payable for the agricultural lands under clause 30 of the Bill.
(15) The provisions of this Bill will not be applicable to lands held by religious and
charitable institutions. It is an accepted policy that all tenants of such institutions should be brought
into direct relationship with the State and made owners of the lands held by them, the institutions
being paid in perpetuity by the Government, in lieu of compensation, an annuity equal to their net
income from the land based on fair rent. It would be desirable to modify the provisions in the Bill

1 comment:

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