TDP Advances For Inam Lands Scam Worth Thousands Of Crores

Inam Lands Scam - Sakshi Post

Amaravati: According to the Andhra Pradesh (Andhra Area) Inams (Abolition and Conversion into Ryotwari) Act, 1956, service holders or employees in charitable and religious institutions are allowed to utilize the Inam lands. The Act prevents the beneficiaries from neither sale nor transfer of the immovable properties to others.

In 1996, the Supreme Court ruled that it is illegal to issue Ryotwari Pattas for the Inam lands. The top Court clarified that registration of Inam lands is an irregularity, and it deemed that any registrations that have been carried out by then would be invalid. In 2013, the Andhra Pradesh government amended the Andhra Pradesh (Andhra Area) Inams (Abolition and Conversion into Ryotwari) Act, 1956, rendering all registrations of Inam lands invalid. The amendment provided the service holders and employees in charitable and religious institutions with rights to enjoy the Inam lands only as along as they serve their respective institutions. According to a judgement by a Supreme Court bench in 2015, the registrations of the Inam lands were deemed invalid and the issue of Ryotwari Pattas to the lands was disallowed.

What are Inam lands?

Earlier, the Endowments department provided the priests and the staff working at places of worship with Inam lands. Later, the staff were given lands by donors. These lands are called Inam lands and the priests and staff have been given rights to use the lands within their time period of service, with a view to support them financially by allowing them to plant crops in the lands. The beneficiaries had been deprived of the right to sell the properties. Nevertheless, in case of any registrations to the Inam lands, the Courts have ruled that they were invalid and asked the government to include the lands under section 22 (A)1, preventing them from sale or purchase. Neither sale or purchase of the Inam lands is a criminal offense.

Despite the laws, certain influential people in the government are making moves to amend the laws to facilitate registration of Inam Lands. According to sources, the State government is preparing to register the lands to Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leaders. Officials can't believe the government's plan to compromise on the lands worth thousands of crores of rupees. It is learnt that the government prepared a draft bill for the amendment of the Act, in preparation for passing the bill in the ongoing Assembly session. Acting on a request from a TDP MLA from Krishna district, the government formed a committee to prepare the draft bill for amendment of the law, in such a way that the registrations to lands that have Ryotwari Pattas be allowed. Accordingly, the committee prepared the proposals and sent the report for the review of the Ministry of Justice.

In this regard, certain forces in the government have decided to violate the High Court's ruling that directed the removal of the Ryotwari Patta holders from the Inam lands, by considering the holders as encroachers. A few TDP leaders have already been issued the Ryotwari Pattas in the names of their benamis, so that they could legally own the properties after amending the law in the Assembly. Some other leaders have purchased the lands at inconsequential rates. Hence, by amending the law, the TDP leadership has planned for the sale of the lands for thousands of crores of rupees.

Violation of Inam Act, 1956

Before 1996, certain benefeciaries of the Inam properties have sold their lands, in violation to the Andhra Pradesh (Andhra Area) Inams (Abolition and Conversion into Ryotwari) Act, 1956, while some others have been illegally issued Ryotwari Pattas for the Inam lands. The Supreme Court, however, has later ruled that it was illegal to issue Ryotwari Pattas for the Inam lands and that registration of Inam lands was illegal . In the backdrop of the 1996 Supreme Court order, the AP government made amendment to the law preventing the service holders and employees in charitable and religious institutions with rights to use the Inam lands no longer than the period of service or employment in the institutions. Despite the Court orders and amendments, the employees who possessed the Ryotwari Pattas to the Inam lands sold their properties to others. Not only did they sell their lands, they have also been asking the State government for issuance of No Objection Certificates. In this regard, they have approached the High Court.

The High Court in 2015 ruled that the beneficiaries could utilize the lands only until they serve their respective institutions, directing the State government to place a ban on registrations of Inam lands. Yet, the TDP leaders are making moves to grab 24,614 acres of Inam lands by amending the law.

Also Read: Governor Reviewing TDP’s Scams: GVL Narasimha Rao

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