Right to Information Act or RTI was introduced by the Government of India in the year 2005 to promote transparency and better administration in the government agencies. It allows the citizens of India to demand information from the different agencies of the government about their procedures and other details, except for the organisations involved with the security of the country. It is an important step taken by the then government in direction of curbing corruption in the government organisations. RTI covers the majority of government authorities that can be reached by the citizens for various information. The applicant needs to file an RTI application with the concerned authority of the organisation from which he/she seeks to gather the information. It is to be noted that the right to apply for RTI is only allowed to the resident citizens of India and does not extend to the NRI.
Can RTI application help in Land and Property disputes?
RTI can be applied for accessing different kind of information regarding the property, like land registrations, title documents, past transactions of the property and such. All this information is vital to settle a Land or Property Dispute.
What are different types of land property disputes and how RTI can help in them?
Land and Property disputes cases mainly include:
- Fake Registration – It is possible that a buyer has been sold a land on the basis of a fake land registration. Or that a third party claims a right on the party registered under your name. In such cases, the affected party can file an RTI with concerned land records authority seeing the details of the registration of the concerned land or property. The same information can be requested before the purchase of a property to have detailed information on the rightful owners to avoid getting into legal trouble.
- Dispute over Land – A dispute over land can occur in relation with its boundary, its status, or any other detail. Moreover, for buyer, any impending litigation or dispute over the property can become a cause of dispute, if not intimated in advance. An RTI can be filed to seek different information like measurement of the property, boundary, share of a person in the property, ownership records etc. An applicant also has the right to know the status of his/her application and in case of delay in inspection, the reason for it.
- Encumbrance Certificate – An encumbrance certificate is necessary to establish a clear title of the property or land. It is mandatory to ensure that there is a clear ownership over the property without any kind of liability, monetary or legal. It can be obtained through an application to the land records authority of the concerned state. It will help a buyer make sure that the property he/she is about to purchase is not disputed or has any legal obligation attached to it.
How can an RTI application be submitted for land and property disputes?
The following details should be known prior to filing an RTI application
- Name of the authority, the application needs to be addressed to
- Details of the property whose information is required
- Address of the property
While filing an RTI application, make sure to adhere to the various requirement as mentioned on the RTI website, so that your request is processed. A small mistake can cause the rejection of your application, in which case you’ll have to go through the entire process again.