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Rural Ministry’s advisory on land reforms list measures to provide free legal help to poor

Rural Ministry’s advisory on land reforms list measures to provide free legal help to poor
After drafting National Right to Homestead Bill, 2013, which  ensures right to hold homestead of not less than 10 cents) for every shelter-less poor family in rural area, the the Rural Development Ministry has now issued advisories on land reforms to state governments.

The advisories list measures to provide free legal assistance to the poor, ‘The poor require a sensitive support mechanism to help them in securing their land rights. To his end, a Land Rights and Legal Assistance Centre may be established at every Block/Sub-district headquarter under the aegis of the DRDAs,’ states the advisory issued on 20th of March to state governments.

The advisory states that legal centres should consist of Paralegals, Community Surveyors and lawyers.  In a bid to ensure that villagers are not hassled in land matters, the government has proposed that about   3-5 rural youth/women from the community should be identified, trained in land and legal matters and positioned as paralegals.

In its advisory the ministry has further asked the state governments that after establishing the Land Rights and Legal Assistance Centres, inventory of all lands should be done in all villages to identify the land related problems of the poor. ‘Services of the local village youth/SHG women may be utilised as Community Resource Persons, after providing basic training on the land records and other important provisions related to lands to enable them to map the land problems in all the villages,’ said the advisory.
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