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The real estate market has historically been plagued by land acquisition issues. The current government’s initiative of facilitating e-registration to streamline the registration of immovable properties, is an extremely progressive move. This has been universally welcomed for its transparency and ease of use.
How to e-register land
The land registration and application form can be either downloaded online or obtained from the concerned authority’s office in the state. After the verification of form details and the related documents of the concerned person, the land is registered in a matter of days, and this marks the completion of the registration process and establishing the full-accredit ownership of the property.
E-registration procedure in urban and rural areas
Since property in both, urban and rural areas come under the jurisdiction of the same state government and both are managed under a tehsil (taluka or mandal), the e-registration of property (residential or commercial) is fairly similar. For vacant land, valuation is done at the current market price while for occupied land (with built-up properties like shops, flats, cottages, etc.), it is done on the market price as well as the gross investment utilised by a building. For instance, a single-storeyed house will be valued higher than a multi-storeyed house if it is in a prime location. Otherwise, the latter commands a higher valuation.
Safety of e-registration of land
Hackers can do nothing to compromise documentation, as they do not have access to the papers that owners have relating to their land. This includes transfer of power of attorney, land purchase deed or wills of deceased person who were entrusted with the protection of the property. Also, since most government servers are SSL encrypted with multiple layers of security and a personalised login system, it is not easy to hack into consumers’ details.
However, to check the authenticity of the buyers and sellers, it is always best to consult a professional real estate consultant, who has proper knowledge about the sector. It is important to establish that a land’s claim is retained by the owner and that there is no scope for the land mafia or government to contest it.
Also, before signing a deal, it is always advisable to visit the site at least twice (giving a gap of a few months) in the presence of the seller or buyer in order to verify overall authenticity.
Where is e-registration already being used?
States such as Kerala, Orissa, West Bengal, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Sikkim, New Delhi, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab and Chhattisgarh, have the facility in force since as early as the 1990s. Such states have developed the Common Services Centre (CSC) Scheme where all registrations are verified.
For older property, the process is simple. The consumer simply needs to register the following documents:
- Power of attorney (sale, transfer, hold or deconstruct).
- Non-testamentary instruments which purport directly to or operate to create, declare or assign any right, title or interest of the value of Rs 100 and upwards, to any kind of immovable property (inherited land).
- Non-testamentary instruments which acknowledge full receipt of payment of any consideration on the transfer of ownership to a new owner.
Real estate experts say
- Experts are in favour of registration of land, especially e-registration, since it helps them to focus on larger projects.
- It helps to secure deals that will not end up in legal troubles, since non-registration can lead to significant legal trouble.
In cases where there is a need to confer any kind of power – especially in patriarchal or commercial holdings – land registration helps the government to ascertain the rightful owner and avoid family feuds. Also, e-registration helps in quickly producing evidence of any transaction that affects the property or confers special powers to an individual or firm. To avoid the risk of personal land being impounded, it makes sense to register all the land documents online today at the respective state’s online website.
(The author is the CEO – Residential Services, JLL India)