The Punjab Land Revenue Act, 1887

The Punjab Land Revenue Act has been incorporated on 23rd September, 1887. This is an Act to amend the law relating to Tenancy of Land, Land Revenue Administration, records of rights, appointment and function of such Offers deems fit for this Act in State of Punjab.

This Act shall not be applicable to all areas. If the Government feels that certain areas are unsuited for this Act, with the notifications in the Official Gazette shall avoid implication of such proceedings under this Act. In case of recording, survey and recovery of Village cess proper rules for administration shall not be made to any land that is not under the purview of this Act. The Collector has the rights to notify any inclusion or exclusion of lands in pursuance to this Act by general Order or special Order of the Revenue Board for the assessment of land revenue.

This Act has provisions for appointing certain Officers to fulfill the intention of this Act. In that case classes of Revenue Officers were appointed which includes Revenue Board, Commissioner, Assistant Commissioner, Collector, Assistant Collector first grade and second grade. In general, Commissioner and Assistant Commissioner shall be appointed for Divisions, Collectors and Assistant Collectors for Districts and a Tahsildhar for Local revenue Administration. The Supervisory and Administrative Authority for all the above Officers is obviously the Board of Revenue by passing such written Orders, subject to the Central Government.

The Central Government shall have every right to appoint any number of Officers as it deems fit in pursuance to this Act. This also manages to delegate the powers to all class of revenue authorities or Officers by notification in the Official Gazette. In case if there is any lacuna or absence of certain necessary procedure, the Board of Revenue shall with the prior permission shall make such rules and regulations in pursuance to the necessity of the situations.

 In case of enforcing the Orders for revocation of this Act or delivery and recovery of immovable properties, arrest, etc, the Board of Revenue shall take the assistance of Civil Procedure Code. The Board has the power to dispose any case pending on or of his subordinate revenue officers after giving an opportunity to be heard by the opposite party. The Language used to dissolve the issues is of simple local language. After disposing the Order passed may be sealed. Even in case of any rules and enforcement of this Act for Village Officers, the Board of Revenue follows the same steps as above. The Government by notifications shall name any of or all estates to pay Village Cess or such other payment with interest. It shall not be more than five percent on Land revenue.

The Board of Revenue shall maintain the records of rights and periodical reports containing the rights of land owners, tenant, or any person who are entitled to receive rent, profits, etc. Such records shall contain the people who are entitled, to what extent, the location, etc, with the terms and conditions, the statement of rights and liabilities, etc. In case of any records of rights missing, the Board of Revenue shall by notification demand for such records or reassess those records and in some cases it shall presume based on previous records. The Board of Revenue with the assistance of the Government shall perform his duties as prescribed in this Act.

 In case of any disputes arise upon reassessing or revising or preparation of such records of rights, either the Board of Revenue or any such person shall deemed fit shall be made into possession as evidence by a written Order and entered from the Records of rights. In case if he is below the rank of the Assistant Collector first grade, then the matter shall be delegated to such Assistant Collector. The Competent authorities shall perform their punishments.

In case of assessment, any or all land that comes under the purview of this Act shall pay land revenue except certain lands that are exempted as prescribed by this Act. The assessment of revenue is based on the estimation of average money value of the gross produce of the estate as prescribed by this Act. In case if the assessment is made on fixed annual charge or prescribed rate by the written approval of the Central Government, the revenue amount shall not be more than one-fourth of the estimated money value. In case of reassessment, it shall be informed by notification with instruction and details of assessment. The mode of assessment shall be sanctioned by the Board of Revenue by Commissioner. Any aggrieved party by this reassessment shall proceed with the application to reconsider the amount, terms and conditions of assessment, etc, within thirty days. The aggrieved party has a right to Appeal against the Order to the Appellate Court.

In order to determine the extent of ownership, two acres of unirregated lands shall be taken as one irrigated land for calculations of land revenue. The Board of Revenue has the power to increase the extent of ownership as prescribed by this Act. In case if any land owners who are charged by land revenue though he comes under exemption of land revenue category, shall by application can claim for exemption and on such case by notification by the Board of Revenue shall alter his status based on his exemption. The Central Government shall make any number of rules at any time that needs in pursuance to this Act.

The land revenue shall be collected from the owner or owners in case of jointly or severally liable to pay such revenue. In some case land revenue shall be collected from the securities provided and shall be collected by passing an order to regulate the payment and in case of absence of rules in pursuance to the payment, the Board of Revenue with the prior approval of Central Government shall make certain rules in pursuance to this provision of this Act, etc.

The Board of Revenue shall perform the survey of lands and fix the boundaries in order to make bound to pay land revenue. This Board has the power to instruct the Land owner upon the measurement of lands. In case of professional survey other than the Revenue Officer or Village Officer, the Board of Revenue with notification containing the area and nature of survey, name of the Officer designated to survey, the extent of boundaries, etc.

 In case if the Joint owner wants his share of land he shall claim by application to such Revenue Officer for partition when he really holds Ownership interest or rights over the property. In case of inheritance, mutation takes place and in such case the revenue officer without application serves notice to all Joint ownership to agree for private partition by framing a scheme within thirty days. In the case of partition by any mode the Revenue Officers perform their duties as prescribed by this Act.

In case of any dispute, the Revenue Officers shall with the consent of the parties refer the case to the Arbitration and the arbitrator with the assistance of revenue officer shall perform the duties prescribed under this Act. But the Collector or Assistant Collector of First Grade shall refer the matter to arbitration even without the consent of the Parties as deems fit in pursuance of this Act. In case of any other matter the aggrieved party shall go for either appeal or review or even revision as he prefers and the matter shall be disposed of as specified under this Act.

There were several supplementary and miscellaneous provisions are followed with a repealing clause further followed with. As far as the repeal clause is concerned the enactments in the part I of the schedule followed with shall be repealed.

by C.Srivenkatesh Prabhu.