BHUBANESWAR: The State Government is preparing draft amendment to bring in changes to the Orissa Prevention of Land Encroachment (OPLE) Act, 1972, for eviction of people who have illegally occupied Government land.
The draft amendment is done on the lines of laws framed by Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh governments. The proposed amendment suggests collection of land rent from the unauthorised occupants till their eviction, Revenue and Disaster Management Minister SN Patro told the Assembly on Saturday.
Replying to the annual demand discussions for the Department, the Minister said the special cell, set up in the Revenue Department, has identified over 12,137 acres of Government land under illegal occupation.
Meanwhile, the Department has recovered over 2,658 acres from the encroachers. While 3,109 acres of Government land was under encroachment in Puri district, the Revenue administration has recovered 1,507 acres. Similarly, 390 acres have been restored to Government records in Khurda district.
The Minister said the Government had provided ` 3.06 crore in the 2011-12 Budget for protection of Government land by fencing or erecting boundary walls.
Admitting that the Revenue laws, regulating land administration, have become obsolete, the Minister said there was an urgent need to bring in changes to the Orissa Land Reforms Act. The Government has undertaken modernisation of land records under the National Land Records Modernisation Programme (NLRMP) for conducting a fresh survey of revenue land. Meanwhile, seven districts have been covered under the programme in two phases. The Government has submitted a proposal to the Centre to grant financial assistance to extend the programme to 15 districts coming under the Integrated Action Plan.
The Minister said there was a huge pendency of mutation cases in the State. While over 1.95 lakh cases were pending at the beginning of the current financial year, another 3.85 lakh cases were registered till November last year. After disposal of over 3.43 lakh cases, another 2.37 lakh cases are pending for disposal. The Department has developed a software for online disposal of mutation cases. Steps have been taken to dispose of the remaining cases within three months, he said.