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Urban property records A bold and timely step


Geospatial Today

An accurate urban land record system for five towns in Karnataka is under progress in PPP mode. It is bound by a time frame and promises a fool-proof system for citizens to finally avail much needed land records.


A well maintained urban land record system has been a dream of the common man. Citizens planning to invest in land have kept away from investing from fear of legal disputes over ownership. A proper land record system will go a long way in land transactions and in taking the economy forward. Karnataka state has been a front runner in bringing some amount of semblance in this area with

initiatives such as 'Bhoomi' and now it is embarking on another journey, creating and maintaining property ownership records in five urban bodies with a framework for management of these records. The five towns selected are Mangalore, Bellary, Mysore, Hubli-Dharwad and Shimoga. The Department is in process of implementing several measures for making the land records of the state, both cadastral as well as textual data accurate and reflective of the ground situation.

Another interesting feature of the project is that it is in the Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode. It seen as a major breakthrough as this is the first time that the government and private sector have teamed up in the area of land records. The project has a specific time frame of nine months and once completed this will be a good model for other states to follow.

How it works

The task of creating urban property records will consist of four activities. Firstly, the creation of property records under this, surveying and mapping of all properties in the cities is done, verification of ownership of properties is taken care. Secondly, continuous management and maintenance of property records includes creation of property records in respect of new extensions to the city, changes in property records due to new construction, change in land use, mutation of property records in case of sale/partition. Thirdly, operations and maintenance of service delivery channels to deliver various property record related services to citizens. These service centres will be established by survey department. All the above functions will be done by one vendor and will be called service provider.

Finally, the creation of IT infrastructure will comprise software application, various COTS software products, servers storage and IT hardware. This IT infrastructure will enable storage of property records and other data and the software model will enable the delivery of various property record related services like title enquiry, certifying transactions and changes to property records. This will be done by a technical service provider.

Benefits of the project

•    A robust system of Urban Property Ownership Records is created for every property which accurately       records both for the spatial characteristics of the property as well as record of rights data
•    The property record will serve as a trusted record for all transactions
•    The property record created through this project will evidence property ownership for all regulatory and       legal purposes
•    The property record over the years will be continuously updated, i.e. will not become obsolete or       inaccurate
•    All property record related transactions and services will be fulfilled through this project.

PPPs taking off

The grouse that Public Private Partnerships do not happen in the geospatial industry can be put to rest at least for the time being. The initiative by the Karnataka government is a fine example in this regard. Given the various uses of accurate property records, a viable model for creation of property records can be built with investment both from the department and the private sector and a services-based user charges payment model can be worked for the private sector entity participating in the development of a new system of urban land records.

Government will support the PPP model in the form of policy initiatives, some committed lump sum payment, direct investment in some components of this project, and will also assure the private partner a reasonable return on their investment by levying user charges on the citizens.


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