KOTTAYAM: In yet another strategic political move, the Oommen Chandy Government has decided to amend the rules regarding the awarding of title deeds (pattayams) to the settler farmers of Idukki district.
Announcing the decision here on Friday, Revenue Minister Adoor Prakash said that as per the new rules the settler farmers would be given title deeds up to four acres of land with rights for immediate transfer of rights on occupied land.
The Minister added that rules will be relaxed only for the settlements before August 1, 1971, which would be considered under the Kerala Land Assignment (KLA) Act, 1960. “As per the 2005 amendment of KLA Act, settler farmers in Idukki district were supposed to be issued title deeds for land up to one acre in hilly track area and 50 cents in other areas and were not supposed to transfer their rights in the land for three years, which was later hiked to 25 years by the LDF Government in 2009. Now, the government has decided to lift such restrictions for occupied lands and increase the area up to four acres, which were the major demands of the settlers and people’s representatives. But, the restriction for transfer of right on non-occupied land will be retained as 25 years, though they will be eligible for holdings upto four acres,” he said. According to Prakash, the decision was taken as part of expediting the UDF’s proclaimed policy to award pattayams to the deserving people in the State. However, the new decision will be applicable only for the settler farmers in Idukki district.
“A new rule has been formulated and handed over to the Law Department for reviewing its legal aspects. It is expected that the Law Department will return the file in two days, which will be tabled in the Cabinet at the earliest. Soon after the Cabinet clearance, the decision will be implemented as per law,” he said.