Recently Delhi Govt. has sought suggestions from people on Delhi land Reform Act, 1954, citing this act as a dated act, which needs revision.
However, DDA has objected to it and wrote to Delhi Govt., stating that constitutionally changing this law is beyond state Govt.’s authority. In the letter DDA has apprised Delhi Govt. of legal provisions of land reform act.
Experts view it as an attempt from Delhi Govt. to grab “right of land use change” from DDA. It should be noted that so far Delhi Govt. has just asked for suggestion and has not stated who would be doing amendments. Currently, DDA does the land use change from agricultural to residential, commercial, institutional,etc, in authority meetings, whose members include representatives from AAP and BJP. Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung chairs these meetings.
Vijender Gupta, Leader of Opposition Delhi Govt., views it as a ploy to delay Land Pooling Policy. He stated that if Delhi Govt. urbanizes and declares land pooling villages as Development Area, proposed changes to Section- 33 and 81 would be automatically implemented.
Under Sec-33, land owners, having ownership of less than eight acres, would also be permitted to sell, gift or transfer their land.
Under Sec-81, agricultural land can be used for residential, commercial, institutional, and other permitted commercial usage after securing permissions.
A notable point in this land reform exercise from Delhi Govt. is that no division of ownership is mentioned anywhere, which makes it a exercise targeted to confuse people. It has not mentioned who is responsible to provide permissions in matter related to land use change and who is going to amend the act.
Conspicuously, DDA, the land owning agency in Delhi, doesn’t find any mention in this land reform exercise from Delhi Govt. To a common man’s mind, this puts a sense of uncertainty and further escalation of confrontation between DDA and Delhi Govt. The Aam Aadmi is already tired of waiting for land pooling policy and is in no state to wait further on pretext of this land reform act amendment. We request Delhi Govt. not to reinvent the wheel on sections 33 and 81, that can be automatically implemented with the implementation of land pooling policy in Delhi. Hon’ble Chief Minister, Sh. Kejriwal, please implement land pooling policy first, and then carry on with land reform. Don’t make the Aam Aadmi wait any longer for affordable housing in Delhi.