Why Chak Bandi in Delhi villages can’t precede Land pooling in Delhi

The basic premise of the ‘Chakbandi’ exercise is to amalgamate and redistribute all or any of the land in any revenue village, so as to reduce the number of plots in the holding. It is done under the East Punjab Holdings (consolidation & prevention of fragmentation) Act 1954.

The process of Consolidation is irrelevant in the context of Land pooling owing to the following key reasons.

  1. The average land holding in Delhi (like in rest of India) is less than One hectare, and almost 90% of the land parcels are in that category.
  2. Land parcels are under the joint holding of family members, and the provisions of the Delhi Land reforms act 1954 do not allow the land to the fragmented amongst the family members.
  3. The consolidation exercise needs 80% consent through an application to the LG, of the villagers, who today do not see an impending need to consolidate their lands. They would rather monetize their land parcels through the recently announced ‘Land Pooling scheme’ of DDA.
  4. Even where the consolidation was ordered, the process is extremely lengthy and consolidation exercise takes anywhere between 10-20 years for completion. (*Please see chart attached)

Please see the list of villages wherein the ‘Chakbandi’ process has not been completed yet. (year of inception is provided)

Name of Village                     Year Chakbandi initiated in

Bijwasan                               1985-86

Alipur                                   1988-89

Singhola                               1997-98

Khera Kalan                          1997-98

Puth Khurd                           1997-98

Kanjhawala                          1997-98

Nangli Poona                        1972-73

Badusarai                             1997-98

Pindwala Khurd                     2005-06

There are also villages where the process hasn’t been initiated in the last more than 50 years (e.g : Ladpur)

Extension of Lal Dora land under the process of “Chakbandi’

Like in all urban areas, the rural population also increases with the passage of time. The process of consolidation every 20 years defined the need and increased the ‘Abadi Area’ of the village. Since the residential plots were allowed to be built by the villager, for self-consumption, the MCD has exempted it from strict compliance to the building byelaws.

Please find below excerpts from the MCD guidelines.

REGULATIONS OF BUILDING ACTIVITIES IN LAL DORA (ABADI) OF RURAL VILLAGES

 

MCD’s Notification dated 24th August 1963 exempts rural abadi areas (within Lal Dora/extended Lal Dora) from certain sections of the DMC Act, under the Chapter ‘Bldg. Regulations’. This notification only exempts the residents of abadl area from the sanction of Building Plans for their residential units. It, however, does not exempt the buildings from the purview of Building Bye-laws.

 

Lal Dora is basically the abadi, the residential area, where the landowners of agricultural land around, dwell. The extension of the Lal Dora is also meant for meeting the residential needs of the landowners. Any activity contrary to above cannot be regarded as permissible activity in the Lal Dora.          

It has been observed that the zonal offices of MCD and the staff responsible for controlling the building activities have been mis-interpreting the above notification, thereby permitting all sorts of illegal and unauthorized construction within Lal Dora. It is further clarified that only a building, residential in character, and not going beyond    2-1/2 storeys and owned by the original resident/his descendant is to be permitted. Any other building in Lal Dora/extended Lal Dora requires prior approval and sanction of the Building Plans from the Municipal Corporation of Delhi, as per the provisions of MPD-2001, Zonal Plan and Building Bye-laws.

It is, needless to mention that, once a village is urbanized, there is no Lal Dora and no exemption and all buildings come under the purview of sanction of Building Plans.

Now that the villages are being classified as ‘Urban villages’ and that the village folk are aware of the projects like ‘Smart city’ and other economic opportunities, there is no move towards extension of Lal Dora.

There are three key strategies suggested that would ensure that the Landowners in villages would be participative towards development of villages through the Land pooling scheme, rather than the ‘Chakbandi’ exercise.

  1. DDA to integrate the villages in the development process, and create access to infrastructure & civic services
  2. Each village has existing Gram Sabha lands, which can be leveraged to create common services & benefits for the exclusive use of the villagers
  3. Through the land-pooling scheme, the villagers can monetize their land parcels, through multi fold returns compared to the acquisition process. The urbanization process not just creates employment opportunities, but also helps them be part of the economic activity, as entrepreneurs.

Why the Farmers would be against Chakbandi & extension of Lal Dora in each village

  • Under the Land pooling policy, DDA would pool the land submitted by the villagers, and give them “Residential Plots” in lieu of the land surrendered. Contrary to the acquisition process wherein the Landowner was losing his land assets, livelihood & quality of life, the Land pooling process actually enhances all three, multifold.
  • Every Land owner knows that under Land pooling, they can upgrade their quality of life by participating in the development process, and that even if they part monetize their assets, they can actually buy a larger piece of land in surrounding villages, which are either notified as LDRA villages, or in Haryana.
  • Even if the process of ‘Chakbandi’ is initiated in any village, the villagers are sure that the same cannot be completed in a time bound manner, thereby, depriving them of the opportunity to participate in the development process, and monetize their assets. (During the process of ‘Chakbandi’, the Landowners are notionally considered ‘Be’Dakhal’ from their land, and they cannot sell, lease, monetize OR engage in any activity whereby they establish any ownership rights).
  • When the Farmers are extended the benefits of the Incentivized redevelopment scheme, the Existing Abadi area of Lal Dora lands too would be consolidated and redeveloped with all modern infrastructure & amenities.
  • The villagers are being given two options under the Land pooling scheme, which are easily monetized.
  • Plot of land against Land surrendered
  • Tradable FAR
  • The above would add much more to individual earnings, than the extension of Lal Dora abadi land (which would take decades to consummate)

The villages in Delhi are much different than the villages in other states. The average level of education as well as awareness is much higher, and every village is within 7-10 kms of existing urbanized areas. There is at least one member of each family who is either gainfully employed in Govt. departments like Govt of NCT, DDA, MCD, Delhi Police etc.

Today, the villagers of Delhi are seeking that Knowledge based industrial parks be set up, and that their skill levels be enhanced on industries like ITeS, Financial services, manufacturing etc. rather than old economy skills on Farming & handicraft.

The villages are already moving towards a surplus entrepreneurial ecosystem from a subsistence economy.

Population in villages

With the urbanization of sub cities like Dwarka & Rohini, many families from the surrounding rural areas have already moved to these sub cities owing to the quality of life, physical – social –recreational infrastructure.

There have been no spikes in population in villages, which are covered under the Land pooling policy. Seasonal migration of temporary farm workers does not constitute incremental population.

CENSUS DATA ON CHANGE IN POPULATION IN DELHI VILLAGES

ZONE “N”

 

A careful analysis shows that the population growth has been lower than the normal growth in rest of the country. The population increase in Savda was owing to the slum resettlement project, Ranikhera for Mundka industrial project and Karala for the unauthorized colonies which came up over the past 10 years.

Given the fact that the management of the capital of the country has been undertaken in a slipshod manner, and that the Delhi farmers have no access to a more factual & practical representation of their case.

Sometimes, the victim revels in his own helplessness.

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