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The fight for land in Uttarakhand

Dr Nitin Pandey

18-Aug-2007
Life for many has changed with the creation of Uttarakhand. For some life has become better, for some not so “better”. For a few life has become better than what they had even dreamt of, while others wonder if this is what they had dreamt of.

Perhaps the only people who have had a real windfall since the creation of Uttarakhand are those engaged in Real Estate business. Intense speculation had led to land prices doubling in as little as a year. Given that 60% of all transactions are done in black, the dazzle of this business is there for all to see. How much was the contribution of this segment of our society in the struggle for creation of Uttarakhand is a point to ponder about. How many of them were here during the struggle is a still bigger question. The people who actually struggled for this State have been left high and dry. Is this the state they dreamt of, where even a small piece of land is beyond their reach?
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The aggressive reaction of the people engaged in Real Estate to the enactment of Uttarakhand Land Reforms Act ordinance underscores the need of land reforms in Uttarakhand. If the dazzle of black money could be reduced, the intense speculations in land would be curtailed.

As a first step Real Estate dealers must be licensed. If Doctors, Engineers, Accountants, Nurses, technicians and even roadside vendors can be licensed, why should Property Dealers be an exception? The only reason they are not licensed is the political clout they hold due to their ability to donate liberally. Mainstream political parties need funds for conducting their business and hence their dependence on real estate dealers. Moreover, to protect their interests real estate dealers often masquerade as politicians. Obviously, any attempt to regularize them will be met with a vociferous protest and more strikes, but then if the Government has interests of common Uttarakhandi in mind, it must bell the cat.

Annual Returns should be filed indicating all the deals which they facilitated and also all deals in which they appeared as witnesses. One would not expect anyone to spend time repeatedly appearing as a witness without any material benefit.

All registries should have the name of the Real Estate Dealer written in them. This will force all persons involved to declare the transactions in their annual returns, plus increase the income tax collections of the government.

Further, Real Estate Agents should be required to verify details of any property they sell. This will give legal protection to innocent people who are duped into buying disputed or bad properties.

The Government looses a lot of money by the “routine practice” of undervaluing the property during registry and giving the balance money in black. This is the real stimulus which spurs Real Estate Agents. To reduce this Circle Rates should be made realistic and properties found substantially undervalued should not be accepted for registry or the property could simply be acquired by paying 10% more than the quoted price and auctioned. Mere threat of such a possibility will have dramatic effect.

Finally the amended act must be implemented in Urban areas also to bring relief to the Urban Middle Class.

The strike on Saturday reflects the fight between the innocent middle class people of the State and rich Real Estate Dealers, who are desperate because of the dwindling in their huge profits. Whatever little success they can claim to have achieved was only due to use of muscle power and should not be mistaken for sympathy for their cause.

Who wins in this fight will determine the future of people of Uttarakhand, the silent majority or the vocal few. Should Uttarakhand should be a heaven for tourists, pilgrims, nature enthusiasts or a heaven for land sharks? It is up to each of us to decide. Being a part of dissenting silent majority is not the right answer. As Nick Homer, executive director of “Good Citizen” in US put it: “The ‘Silent Majority’? There is no "Silent Majority". It's an oxymoron. In a democracy, when the majority is silent, they are the minority.” So, we all must speak up; in this fight for land in Uttarakhand, there can be no neutrals.




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Date06-Jan-16
From: That's a wise answer to a tricky quotsien
That's a wise answer to a tricky quotsien


Date14-Oct-15
From: Eimai Anglo-Australos, megalosa sto Sydney tis Australias.Parakoulouthw auto to Blogg apo Agglia pou menw tora kai emena me stoma atknoio auti tin ebdomada yia ta yegonota stin Athina. Den ntan ekpliksei yia mena. Emena sto Pangrati prin apo xronia (1987-
Eimai Anglo-Australos, megalosa sto Sydney tis Australias.Parakoulouthw auto to Blogg apo Agglia pou menw tora kai emena me stoma atknoio auti tin ebdomada yia ta yegonota stin Athina. Den ntan ekpliksei yia mena. Emena sto Pangrati prin apo xronia (1987-94). Eida to proto kuma metanasteusis (Albanoi) apo 'bopeia epiro'-blakeia tote kai den exei allaksi tipote. Efiga apo Athina epeidi den eniotha asfalis TOTE (94). Epatha to proto ratsimo sti zon mou stin Athina apo Ellines-stamatisa na milaw Ellinika sto Kentro (92-94) epeidi an milousa English imoun apo tous 'kalous' ksenous. Epatha 2 epithesis se 7 xronia sto dromo apo Ellines-sto teleutaio exasa ena mati kai allakse H zon mou yia panta. Me koroidepsane H astinomia kai enas filous (prwin mpatsos) mou brike tous drastes. Sto dikastirio me koroidepsane ksana-milousane katherevousa kai den katalaba tipote-kalo kolpo!! Telika oi alites pathane 6 mines, plirosane kai sunexisane ti douleia tous. Ektos apo auto, kai to nefos-telika barethika na pw prin mpika sto taksi apo pou nmoun. Den mporousa na parw taksi na paw sti douleia an forousa JEAN 501s. Efiga, kai apo tote menw mia wra apo Londino sti paralia apenandti apo Gallia. O kairos einai xalia-oi anthropoi psixroi alla exoume TAKSI,ASTINOMEUSI, kai oi Angloi AGAPANE ti xora tous. Oi Ellines agapane ti xora tous? Den nomisw. Oi filoi mou stin Athina einai kaloi, zestoi, sxetika filokseni (to lew auto epeidi den einai etsi pia), kai pou kai pou an tous simferei einai kai filotimoi. Kinikos? Nai-O Ellinas exei allaksi nootropia toso poli se 30 xronia (apo i proti fora pou nltha stin Ellada 1981) oti einai apisteuto.Alla oloi autoi exoun klepsei SDOE, exoun plirosi fakelous se anthropous se upourgeia, exoun paei na blepoun bouleutes (pou den tous exoun psifisi) na paroun kati-thesi,bontheia (me fakelous pali).To noima einai oti autoi oi 'kaloi' exoun ftiaksei H koinonia pou blepoume simera kai tora fonasoune 'APATEONES' stous politikous!!!!!!! Kai fonasoune otan H Astinomia prospathei na balei taksi (Dikaomata pali) Me ta liga lefta pou pairnei enas astinomikos, poios tha kanei auti ti douleia-H kaliteroi? H autoi pou exoun simferon, h autoi pou einai fascistes?Prepei na parete euthini yia ti xora sas-stamata na peite oti oi ksenoi ftanoun-oti geografika Ellada einai se kaki thesi-as tis diakielogies. Taksi se mia xora den kostisi-thelei allagei nootropias-kati pou thelei Ellada epeigontas.Erxome kathi xrono stin Ellada yia diakopes-milaw me ta kalitera logia yia tin Ellada stous gnostous kai filous-den lew pote yia ti exei yinei me mena sto parelthon.Distixws yia mena H Ellada einai san mia arwsteia pou exw kai den thelw na yiatreutw-y'auto parola auta epanwOpou kai na taksidepsw-H Ellada me pligoneiMH tin katastrepsete!!!


Date19-Jun-08
From: Abha
You are right, Realtors in India fleece innocent people and they must be regulated.




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