Can a registration of a document be claimed as a matter of right? Indian Registration Act, 1908, has under section 17 prescribed certain documents which are compulsorily registrable and under section 18, the documents, the registration of which is optional. As such can anybody claim as a matter of right, registration of a document which is compulsory under section 17 of Indian Registration Act 1908.

Various States have amended the main Registration Act and have framed rules there under.

Karnataka Government has inserted a new section 22-A, with effect from 23.10.1976 which empowers the State Government to prohibit the registration of certain documents as opposed to public policy, by notifying in official gazette, and the registering officers shall refuse to register any such document.

Government of Karnataka through Revenue Secretariat Notification No. RD/141 MUNOMV/2005, date. 23/04/2005, has in exercise of powers conferred under section 22-A of Registration Act as amended by Karnataka Act 55 of 1976 has declared registration of following documents as opposed to the public policy. This is effective from 06/05/2005.

1. Site with or without building in agricultural land which is not converted for non-agricultural purpose under section 95 of Karnataka Land Revenue Act 1964.

2. Site described as Gramathana site (form no. 9, 10) or other site declared under form no. 19 under rules framed under Karnataka Municipality Act 1964, but not actually converted as site.

3. Site on a revenue land described as Gramathana Site or other site or a site with a building on which no layout plan is approved and a release certificate is issued from local planning authority like BDA, MRDA, BIAAPA, BMIC.

4. Site on a revenue land described as Gramathana site or other site, flats, industrial site, commercial site, without requisite permission under section 79A and 7B read with section 109 of Karnataka Land Reforms Act.

Thus the transfer of only the following properties is permitted.

a) Properties falling under Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike.

b) Properties allotted by BDA

c) Properties in BDA approved layouts

d)Properties in layouts approved by other local planning authorities like BMRDA, BlAAPA, BMIC etc

In the preamble the notification, it is stated that many properties are registered based on bogus and fabricated documents which do not pass on legally perfect title to the purchaser. In many cases, the agricultural land is transferred by registration as non-agricultural land without actually converting it to a non-agricultural purpose in accordance with Section 95 of Karnataka Land Revenue Act 1964 and Karnataka Land Grant Rules 1989. This has led to haphazard growth of Bangalore and other cities.

Conversion of Agricultural land

The agricultural land has to be used only for agricultural and related purposes and not for any non agricultural purpose. If it is be used for any non-agricultural purposes, the agricultural land needs to be converted for non- agricultural purpose under section 95 of the Karnataka Land Revenue Act. The Special Deputy Commissioner is the authorized officer to accord permission for such conversion and prescribed amount of fee which has to be paid. The conversion shall be for specific purposes like residential, Industrial, commercial, which has to be utilized in certain period. If not the permission for extension of time has to be obtained.

Yearly 70% of population of our country depends on agriculture as a source of livelihood. The agricultural lands in and around cities act as lung spaces. The indiscriminate conversion of agricultural lands deprive the agriculturists of the source of their livelihood, convert the lung spaces into concrete jungles, the agriculturists who do not know any other line of livelihood, expend the money on luxuries, and in course of time may have to struggle to make both ends meet. Thus conversion of agricultural land should be on selective basis based on necessity. Lay-outs made in revenue lands are not approved by planning authorities, lack basic minimum CIVIC facilities like roads, parks etc.

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