Bengaluru: In a move that will directly impact land transactions, Revenue Minister R. Ashoka yesterday said in Bengaluru that the State Government will tweak the existing laws to allow converting agricultural plots for non-agricultural use in 72 hours.
The order to this effect will be issued next week. Speaking to reporters in Bengaluru yesterday, Ashoka said the new scheme is aimed at preventing unnecessary hassles faced by landowners and also putting an end to corrupt practices by Government officers at various levels. Now people who bought land have to wait six to eight months for conversion, he said.
While there will be no change in the conversion fee in rural areas, city and semi-urban areas have to pay two or three-fold fees for conversion, the Minister said. A single-window system will be enforced at the offices of Deputy Commissioners that will deal with all kinds of land conversion to form layouts and industrial areas.
Now, as per procedure, the Revenue Department sends the application for land conversion from the DC to the planning authority, the file then moves to all land acquisition officers, further to the Tahsildar, then to the Revenue Inspector and finally to the Village Accountant.
By the time the land gets converted, it takes around six to eight months and needs a multiplicity of reports, Ashoka said. He said there will be some conditions imposed on those seeking to convert the land. For instance, the land for which conversion is sought should not be encroached or reserved for the welfare of Scheduled Castes or Scheduled Tribes.
The applicants must submit an affidavit and pay the required fees to convert the land. Under the affidavit-based conversion, an agricultural landowner will be able to put the land to any non-agricultural use by giving a self-declaration as per the approved master plan of a particular area.
If a particular area is marked as a green zone in the master plan, then the conversion cannot be done. In case the master plan has not yet been published for an area, then the conversion order will be issued based on the self-declaration subject to the condition that the non-agricultural use should be approved by the relevant authorities as per the Karnataka Town and Country Planning Act. In case false affidavits are submitted or if there are any loopholes or ambiguity in the affidavit, the conversion will be cancelled and at the same time, the applicant has to forfeit the fee paid while applying, Ashoka added.