NEED FOR IMPROVEMENTS IN TENANCY LAWS IN THE LIGHT OF NITI AAYOG’S MODEL TENANCY ACT
NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad in collaboration with NITI Ayog and Acharya Nagarjuna University and Landesa organized a one-day workshop on “Agricultural Land Leasing Laws and the Need for Improvements” on 23rd November, 2016 at Acharya Nagarjuna University, Guntur, Andhra Pradesh. This workshop was primarily aimed at drawing a platform to discuss the needed changes in the agricultural tenancy legislations of the state in the light of last five years’ experience of the implementation of the Land Licensed Cultivators Act, 2011 and the NITI Aayog’s recent Model Agricultural Land Leasing Act.
Prof. Dr. A. Rajendra Prasad, Vice Chancellor, Acharya Nagarjuna University, while delivering the Welcome Address discussed about the Transfer of Property Act, 1882 and the role of Lessor and Lessee and legal issues revolving around leasing of property. Appreciating the Model Tenancy Laws, he said that the same is useful for both land owners and tenants.
The workshop was inaugurated by Shri Anil Chandra Punetha IAS, Chief Commissioner Land Administration (CCLA), Government of Andhra Pradesh. He spoke about the landmark AP Land Licensed Cultivators Act, 2011 which provides for Loan and other Eligibility Cards (LEC) to the farmers, who raise crops with express or implied permission of owner or pattadar of land, enabling them to access credit from the public financial institutions and to claim benefits of input subsidy, crop insurance and compensation for damage to crop. He further highlighted that about one million tenant farmers have received Loan and Other Eligibility Cards under the Act.
Dr. T. Haque, Chairman of Land Policy Cell, NITI Ayog and the former Chairman, Commission on Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) delivered the keynote address wherein he advocated for improvement of land leasing laws as it would help promote agricultural efficiency, equity, occupational diversification and rapid rural transformation.
Shri D Chakrapani IAS (Retd.), Director General, AP HRDI & Ex-officio Secretary, GAD, AP focused on the need for transparency on tenancy law which is a pre-requsite for development.
Addressing the workshop Prof. Dr. Balakista Reddy, Registrar, NALSAR University of Law highlighted the efforts of NALSAR in improving land administration, training of revenue officials and simplifying land laws. NALSAR in collaboration with Landesa undertook several important land related initiatives which helped more than a million rural poor in getting land rights which includes reviewing and revising of 112 land laws of Telangana State at the request of the state government, drafting of amended rules for the Telangana Agricultural Produce and Livestock Markets Act, 1966, Land Acquisition (Resettlement and Rehabilitation Bill ), 2016 for the state of Andhra Pradesh, State Rules for the Juvenile Justice Act, 2015 to the State of Telangana.
Shri. Sunil Kumar, Director, Land Laws and Policies, Landesa, explaining the purpose of the workshop opined that despite numerous tenancy laws, both the tenants and the land owners are unable to productively use the land. NITI Aayog’s initiative in drafting of the model tenancy law at this juncture was hence a welcome move. Hence the workshop is focused on discussing the needed changes in the tenancy laws of AP in the light of the model considering views of various stakeholders.
The programme was attended by Tenant Farmers, Land Owners, Revenue Officers, Bankers, Agriculture Officers, Academicians, Researchers Legal Experts and various other stake holders participated in the workshop.