Bhubaneswar, July 30 (PTI): The Odisha government has initiated a process to accord revenue village status to 4,000 hamlets across the state to ensure that all the people avail the benefits of welfare schemes, an official said.
Process to accord revenue village status gets underway
The process started after Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik approved a proposal in this regard submitted by the Revenue and Disaster Management department, the official said on Wednesday.
Principal Secretary of Revenue and Disaster Management department B.P. Sethi has issued detailed guidelines for declaration of new revenue villages. The District Collectors have been asked to follow the guideline.
The state government has noticed that more than 3,500 proposals have been pending at the district level for years for creation of new revenue villages.
Guidelines for revenue village status
As per the new guidelines, the hamlet to be declared as new revenue village is to be located at more than half a kilometre from the mother revenue village with a population of 250 or more.
Similarly, a hamlet to be declared as new revenue village lying within half a kilometre from the mother village should have a population more than 300. Hamlet separated from mother village by a natural barrier can be reorganised as a new revenue village even if the population of the hamlet is less than 250, Sethi said.
Gochar and community land
He categorically asked the district collectors not to insist upon reservation limit for Gochar and community land for creation of new revenue village out of existing mother village.
However, residents of the newly carved out village shall still have access to existing Gochar and community land situated in mother village, he said, clarifying that all community as well as Gochar lands shall be Common Property Resources (CPR) for both the villages.
Under the existing revenue laws, there is no specific provision for reservation of land up to a particular extent for Gochar and community purpose in connection with creation of a new revenue village out of a hamlet.
4,000 new villages to benefit the people
The matter of creation of new villages has been raised several times in the Assembly and other forums. Most of the proposals were not being considered in view of shortage of Gochar and community land. Certain executive instructions issued long back for reservation of land in course of settlement and consolidation operation have been misinterpreted by field officers when considering creation of new revenue village.
By not creating new revenue villages, the state was also being deprived of resources which would have been otherwise available under different government grants/ schemes.
“By not insisting upon reservation limit, state will now create approximately 4,000 new villages which would benefit the people,” said Sethi, while informing the district collectors that these directives shall supersede all previous instructions of the government in this matter.