A V Vishal
Posted On 02 March 2010 at 20:29
Rights to property may arise or be impacted in three ways. One is the voluntary act of parties. The transactions falling within this classification are those covered by the Transfer of Property Act. The second is by inheritance or bequest. Laws relating to succession apply to this type of devolution of properties. The third is by orders of courts, tribunals, State action, etc.
Similarly, there are three levels of documents that support title. These are title documents, approvals or other municipal records and revenue records. Patta is basically a revenue record. Depending on the nature of the property, it is possible to obtain a patta in respect of any of the transactions above referred to.
As per provisions of law, a person is said to have notice a fact when he actually knows that fact, or when, but for wilful abstention from an enquiry or search which he ought to have made, or gross negligence, he would have known it. In transactions relating to immovable property, the person is said to have noticed if the registration is completed in accordance with the Registration Act and the particulars are duly entered in the books kept in the Registrar's office. Further, any person acquiring any immovable property or any share or interest in any such property, shall be deemed to have noticed the title, if any, of any person who is, for the time being, in actual possession thereof. A patta is a document evidencing lawful possession of the person concerned.
In case of voluntary transfers of title, the transferee can obtain a fresh patta by making an application to the Tahsildar. As per the relevant rules, if both the transferor and the transferee present the application, the change of record is to be ordered immediately. Otherwise, a notice is to be sent to the other party and about two weeks time is given for objections, if any, before transfer of registry is ordered. Hence, in relevant cases, it is advisable to obtain a letter from the sellers or transferors that they have no objection to grant of patta in the name of the purchaser or transferee as the case may be.
In cases of transfers by orders of court, the purchaser is entitled to a transfer of the patta on production of the relevant court order along with a certificate of delivery of possession. In cases where a declaration has been granted by a court for which execution cannot be taken, the patta has to be issued on production of certified copy of the decree passed by court.
In cases of succession, the legal heirs of a deceased person can make an application for transfer of the patta which can be issued in the names of legal heirs on the basis of certificate of death and heirship certificate. If the grant of patta is objected to by any person, then Patta can be granted after an enquiry. In cases of persons whose whereabouts are not known for seven years also, the persons who will otherwise be his legal heirs can make an application for the change of patta. This can also be claimed by a person in possession of the property.
If a person has been in possession of a property for 12 years or more, a patta can be granted to such person after service of notice on the registered holder or owner of the property.
When the patta has been in the names of joint owners, the above procedure may be followed, if there is a transfer of ownership by one of the owners. The consent of the other co-sharers for grant of a joint Patta to a person, who is able to establish his possession and ownership, is not necessary.
Applications for transfer of registry have to be made to the Collector or Divisional Officer or the Tahsildar or Deputy Tahsildar or the Revenue Inspector as the case may be. The said officers may dispose of the matters of by themselves or on enquiry and after receiving reports as per procedure. . There is no right of appeal in cases of transfers of registry ordered by a Tahsildar or a Deputy Tahsildar. However, the Collector or the Divisional Officer may exercise general powers of revision and entertain revision petition at any time against the orders passed by their subordinate officers. Disputed cases and cases involving sub-divisions are to be disposed of by Tahsildars or Deputy Tahsildars.
A patta once issued need not be renewed till a transaction in any one of the aforesaid manner takes place. It is also important from the point of view that the possession of the person concerned is recognised by the Government. Further, in matters relating to land acquisition, notice is usually served on the basis of patta. Those who have acquired a property, but have not obtained patta, may be put to a disadvantageous position as they cannot claim later that they did not receive the notice. Further, patta is issued on actual measurement basis and often there may be a difference between the extent shown in the relevant title document and the extent as covered by the patta. There is a scope for variance or sub-division of survey numbers and particulars like block numbers which can only be found out from a patta. This is not issued for undivided shares and as such, is not a compulsory document to be obtained for ownership of apartments.
As such, the importance of patta cannot be undermined. In all cases where the patta can be obtained, it is best to obtain the same as it can be a vital document in determining your rights relating to the property owned by you.