In a major respite for lakhs of urban poor across the state, Odisha government today decided to provide land rights and property rights to slum dwellers in small towns and cities respectively. While land rights will be given to the slum dwellers in Notified Area Council (NAC) and Municipalities areas, those urban poor living in municipal corporation jurisdictions to get property rights. A decision in this regard was taken at the state cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. “We have taken a historic decision today to grant land rights to the slum dwellers living in municipal councils and NACs of the state and property rights to those living in municipal corporation areas,” Patnaik told reporters after the meeting.
Describing the government’s decision as “historic”, Patnaik said the cabinet today approved promulgation of two ordinances- Odisha Land Rights to Slum Dwellers Ordinance, 2017 and Odisha Municipal Corporation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2017, for assigning land rights and property rights to the identified slum dwellers for development, rehabilitation and upgradation of slums. As per the decision, chief secretary AP Padhi said the beneficiaries in NACs will get 600 square feet land each while their counterparts in Municipalities to get 450 square feet land. However, the beneficiaries in municipal corporation areas to avail 300 square feet built up areas for residential purpose.
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The urban poor in slum will get land rights for residential use that are heritable, mortgageable and non-transferrable. In corporate areas, limited transferable rights will be given, Padhi said. Padhi said an Urban Poor Welfare Fund will be constituted for targeted rehabilitation, redevelopment and upgradation of slums and provision of basic urban services. He said a Slum Redevelopment and Rehabilitation Committee will also be constituted at Urban Local Body level by the state government by notification headed by the collector of the district, to grant certificate of land right to the eligible slum dwellers.
A certificate of land right will be issued jointly in the name of both the spouses in case of married persons and in the name of single head in case of a household headed by a single person. Similarly, Padhi said notifications will be issued separately clarifying other norms of the ordinances.