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Workshop on to Understand the Historical prespective of land movements in India and in refernec to the Act of India

Theme of the Workshop

Control over the natural resources/ Right to food and work


16th May 2006 to 18th May 2006.


  • Recap of the last workshop organized at Bhubaneswar on Advocacy.






























































































































































Before starting to the Workshop on the control over the resources it was felt by the participants group to recap the Advocacy workshop which was organized in the Bhubaneswar. Recap exercise have been conducted first half session on historical materialism based on the above diagram, so that further linkages can be established. As per the above diagram details on the ECONOMIC BASE and the Superstructure have been discussed with the participants, after then the discussion started on the issue of land.


  • Presentation and discussion on Pitts act and  Land Acquisition Act 1894.-


The Pitt’s Act 1784

o        After the Regulating Act of 1773 to regulate the affairs of the Company in India, the second important step taken by the British Parliament was the appointment of a Board of Control under Pitt's India Bill of 1784. It provided for a joint government of the Company (represented by the Directors), and the Crown (represented by the Board of Control).

o        The Board had all the powers and control over all the acts and operations, which related to the civil, military and revenues of the Company.

o        The Council was reduced to three members and the Governor-General was empowered to overrule the majority.

o        Calcutta was given greater powers in matters of war, revenue, and diplomacy, thus becoming in effect the capital of Company possessions in India.

o        By a supplementary the Bill passed in 1786, Lord Cornwallis was appointed as the first Governor-General, and he then became the effective ruler of British India under the authority of the Board of Control and the Court of Directors. The constitution set up by the Pitt's India Act did not undergo any major changes during the existence of the Company's rule in India.

o        The Charter Act of 1813 abolished the trading activities of the Company and henceforth became purely an administrative body under the Crown. Thereafter, with few exceptions, the Governor-General and the Council could make all the laws and regulations for people (Indians and British).

o        The major salient features of the kingdom of Bengal 

         The government must stop further experiments in the revenue administration and proceed to make a permanent settlement with zamindars at moderate rate of revenue demand. The government must establish permanent judicial and administrative systems for the governance of the new kingdom.

         Severe punishment including confiscation of property, dismissal and jail, shall be inflicted on any civilian or military officer found guilty of corruption.

         Receiving gifts, rewards, presents in kind or cash from the rajas, zamindars and other Indians are strictly prohibited and people found guilty of these offences shall be tried charged with corruption.



          An Act to amend the law for the acquisition of land for public purposes and for Companies.

          WHEREAS it is expedient to amend the law for the acquisition of land needed for public purposes and for Companies and for determining the amount of compensation to be made on account of such acquisition;

          the expression “Company” means a Company registered under the [Companies Ordinance, 1984], or under the (English) Companies Acts, 1862 to 1890, or
incorporated by an Act of Parliament [of the United Kingdom]
includes a society registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860; Registered Society within the meaning of the Co-operative Societies Act, 1912

          “Public Purpose” includes the provision of village-sites in districts in which the shall have declared by notification in the official Gazette that it is customary for the government to make such provision and

          The following persons shall be deemed persons “entitled to act” trustees for other persons beneficially interested shall be deemed the persons entitled to act with reference to any such case, and that to that same extent as the persons beneficially interested could have acted if free from disability, a married woman, the guardian of minors, and the committees or managers of lunatics or idiots shall be deemed respectively the persons so entitled to act. 

          No person “entitled to act” shall be competent to receive the compensation money payable to the person for whom he is entitled to act unless he would have been competent to alienate the land and receive and give a good discharge for the purchase-money on a voluntary sale.

          To do all other acts necessary to ascertain whether the land is adapted for such purpose.

          To set out the boundaries of the land proposed to be taken and the intended line of the work (if any) proposed to be made thereon.

          No person “entitled to act” shall be competent to receive the compensation money payable to the person for whom he is entitled to act unless he would have been competent to alienate the land and receive and give a good discharge for the purchase-money on a voluntary sale.

          To do all other acts necessary to ascertain whether the land is adapted for such purpose.

          To set out the boundaries of the land proposed to be taken and the intended line of the work (if any) proposed to be made thereon.

          Notification that particular land is needed for a public purpose or for a company

          Shall be published in the official Gazette.

          Collector shall cause public notice at the convenient places on or near to the land to be acquired.


          Hearing of objections-within thirty days after the issue of the notification.

          Objection shall be made in writing in front of Collector.

          Collector have power to conduct enquiry.

          Declaration that land is required for public purpose

          Declaration shall be made to that effect under the signature of Executive District Officer (revenue).

          Declaration shall be published in the official gazette.

          After declaration collector to take order for acquisition.

          Land to be marked out, measured and planned.

          Notice to person interested- public notice at the convenient places near to the land.

          Interested person or by agent may appear personally before the collector.

          Reside or agents authorized to receive services on their behalf, within the revenue district in which the land is situate.

          Power to require and enforce the making of statements as to names and interests

          Enquiry into measurements, value and claims and award by the collector

          Enquiry and award by the collector.

          Award of collector when to be final

          Correction of mistake-clerical or arithmetic.

          Adjournment of enquiry – the collector may, for any cause he thinks fit, from time to time, adjourn the enquiry to a day to be fixed by him.

          Power to summon and enforce attendance of witness and production of documents.

          Matter to be considered and neglected.

          Taking possession

          Power to take possession

          Special power in cases of urgency.

          15 days from the publication no award to the interested person on land.

          For the purpose railway, traffic collector have power to acquire land immediately after the publication of the notice.

          Compensation to the standing crop to the acquired land.

          Reference to court and procedure thereon

          Any person interested who has not accepted the award may, by written application to the collector, require that the matter be refereed by the collector for the determination of the compensation.

          The application shall state the grounds on which objection to the award is taken-

          Within six weeks from the date of award.

          In other cases within six weeks of the receipt of the notice from the collector or within six months from the date of the collectors award, whichever period shall first expire.

          Collector’s statement to the court.

          Service of notice

          Restriction on scope of proceeding-

          Proceeding in open court

          Cross objection by the company authorized to acquire land.

          Matters to be considered in determining compensation.

          Matters to be neglected in determining compensation.

          Rules as to amount of compensation.

          Form of awards.


          Temporary occupation of land

          Temporary occupation of waste or arable land-

          That the temporary occupation and use of any waste or arable land are needed for any public purposes or for a company, occupation and use of the same for such term as it shall think fit, not exceeding three years from the commencement of such occupation.

          On receipt of plan of the land, collector shall give notice in writing to the person interested on land.

          Power to enter and to take possession and compensation or restoration.

          On the expiration of the term, the collector shall make or tender to the persons interested compensation for the damage (if any) done to the land and not provided for by the agreement, and shall restore the land to the person interested therein.

          Acquisition of land for companies

          Company may authorized to enter and survey

          Industrial concern to be deemed company for certain purposes.

          Previous consent of and execution of agreement necessary.

          Previous enquiry.

          Agreement with provincial government.

          Publication of agreement.

          Penalty for obstructing acquisition of land

          Shall be imprisonment for any term not exceeding one month, or to fine not exceeding fifty rupees and both.

          Magistrate to enforce surrender.



2nd Day –date- 17/5/06 day- Wednesday

Starting Time- 9.00 a.m


Second day of workshop started with the recap of the first day of discussion. All the points have been included in the recap and the participants agreed upon the first day of report.

Summary of the Open discussion over the first day of presentation on the Pitt’s and Land acquisition Act 1894.

  • Land Acquisition Act 1894 (principal act) is meant to benefit the corporate purpose rather public purpose and accordingly government of Orissa and central government is acting for establishment of industry in western Orissa of State.
  • The regulations of the Land Acquisition act 1894, it is very complex for the tribal people of Orissa to understand and ultimately Government is taking benefit and depriving the benefits to the people out of the law.
  • Middleman, agents and Advocates are taking the benefit out of the displacement and the compensation episode of the act.
  • Objection clause under the act- It has been reflected by the group that the Revenue Officer of the district is the powerful officer and he is the person who is finalizing everything and it is one sided, never the voice of the displaced people have been heard.
  • Community participation from koraput realized the fact that it is very necessary to understand the community about the legal provision of the act.
  • Due to provisions in the law the collective ownership of land went to the company ownership on the land via government intervention while saying “public purpose”.
  • Act (land acquisition act 1894) has opened the window for extension of trade by the East India company now it is the Multinational companies those are expanding their business in the tribal belt of the Orissa.
  • Collector is very powerful and therefore they are not hearing the voice of the mass.
  • During the acquisition of land by the government for the company purpose, the price of land fixed by the collector and the company they are in the upper hand and ultimately community are being deprived by the act and policy.
  • In Suktel Water irrigation project of Orissa government- First Government announced for the acquisition of land from 14 villages, but after acquisition from 14 villages, it went to 26 villages and now it is 56 villages under the catchments area of the Dam.
  • In the tribal areas of the Orissa, tribal doesn’t have the patta over the land but they have the holding over the land. During the acquisition of land from the tribal area, government is not making the notice to the tribal people as because that doesn’t have the patta of the land.
  • In the tribal area most of the land are KHAS or collective ownership, in this case government is getting benefit when they the acquiring land for company purpose in that case government is not making any notice to the community, then question arises that who will get the compensation.
  • People are totally unaware about the government process and the regulations of the act which have been framed under the land acquisition act of 1894.
  • Company and collector are in strongest position to deal the laws and acts of the land acquisition act 1898.
  • No land settlement in Orissa after 1976.
  • During the process of acquisition. Survey work has been conducted by the Government, but it is totally unknown to the community regarding the purpose of the survey.
  • Government is always completing the process but not taking the participation of the people.
  • Government is using force for acquiring the land from the community and not following the regulation, only completing the quorum.

The land Acquisition Amendment Bill 1998

          A Bill to further amend the Land acquisition act, 1894.

          No collector shall, acquire  land under L.A Act 1894 or any other Act for the time being in force, in Schedule Areas specified by the fifth Schedule of the Constitution without prior consultation with the Gram Sabha of the Pancahayat at appropriate level.

          The Collector shall organize open public hearing of all objections received from each village, on a fixed date, at a public place, with prior notice, and such public hearing shall be conducted in the presence of Sarpanch/Pradhan or counsellor/Commissioner of the Municipal/Corporation ward.

          The Collector shall organize open public hearing of all objections received from each village, on a fixed date, at a public place, with prior notice, and such public hearing shall be conducted in the presence of Sarpanch/Pradhan or counsellor/Commissioner of the Municipal/Corporation ward.

          Officials of the land acquisition department may make physical verification of land, to ascertain its suitability and for the purpose of selection and deletion of area on the basis of genuine public grievances. Looking into the interest of the people as well as the requiring body, collector may finalize detail of the area to be officially acquired and proceed with notification.

          In the event of Collector’s coming to a conclusion that the areas need not be acquired on account of public disagreement or any other reasons whatsoever, even after public hearing and necessary field visits, he shall forthwith forward his report to the appropriate government, containing his observations and recommendations on the objections, if any, together with the record of the proceeding held by him, for the decision of the government.

          Notice under the section 7 it shall also invite written claims from all concerned for payment of suitable compensation, against each plot/parcel of land. Such claims shall be submitted by all persons interested in the lands covered under the notice within three weeks from the date of issuance of notice or from the date of publication of the same in the local newspaper, whichever is later.

          The claims for compensation from each individual should be in a single petition containing details of amounts claimed in separate sheets for each plots/parcel land giving details of all like land, building crop, damages caused, etc.

          Persons having interest in land, may in addition to claiming compensation, also in writing express their intentions to avail the resettlement and rehabilitation benefits.

          The Collector shall have the exclusive power to acquire land for resettlement and rehabilitation.

          Incurring cost of resettlement and rehabilitation should include cost of acquisition, transportation, necessary information and support services, payment of compensation.

          The collector shall then cause public notice to be given at convenient places on or near the land to be taken; stating that the government intends to take possession of the land, and that claims to compensation for all interests in such land may be made to him.

          The Collector shall also, at this stage issue, public notices containing full details of the resettlement and rehabilitation plan prepared in connection with the concerned L.A proceedings, as the case may be, and indicating the cost of land, constructed house, shop etc. which may be adjusted against the compensation payable to the displaced persons to the extent and subject to other limitations prescribed by the rules or the national/state guidelines till such rules are framed.

          For fixation of market value of the buildings and other permanent structures situation in the land to be acquired, the collectors may take a service of competent engineers in the manners as may be prescribed.

          For the purpose of assessing the value of permanent trees and plants, and the standing crops the collector may take the services of competent officials of the department of horticulture, agriculture, forest sericulture etc.

          The Collector shall display a summary of the total proceeding taken in any of any land acquisition case including compensation awarded to each individual against details of land finally acquired, summary of the R & R plan, schedule for payment of compensation, date of possessing land, the collector will publish everything in the official gazette in addition to making the same available free of cost in a booklet from all person interested.

          Payment of compensation and taking over physical possession shall be completed within 60 days from the date of displaying the award of compensation or the summary of the proceedings, whichever is later and the aforesaid actions shall not be held up for actual publication of the summary of the proceedings in the official gazette prescribed.

          The appropriate government may appoint special tribunal for early disposal of litigation pertaining to land acquisition cases under this act especially for such cases which contain of 100 hectares or more as the case may be decided by the appropriate government on merit.

          The cost of acquisition, rehabilitation, resettlement and plan development of industrial estates may be borne by the concerned Urban development authorities or concerned departments/Ministries of the appropriate government.


o       Tribal land movement in India-

  • Social movements are generally conceived as the manifestation of collective behavior.
  • The study of this historicity of the social movements is extremely important in order to have an insight into the present structural arrangements of it as well as its future orientations.
  • “the tribal communities who with a sensitivity born of isolation and with a relatively intact mechanism of social control revolted more often and far more violently than any other community including peasants of India.’’
  • British colonialism made a very excellent use of this situation and added some more dimensions in it. Through the enactment of the Permanent Settlement Regulations Act in 1793 it introduced the concept of private property in land which was unknown in Indian history. As a result of this most of the erstwhile adivasi rajas or chieftains were converted into zamindars or landlords and the common peasants were transformed into serfs or rayats. Instead of payment of nominal subscription to the Mughal emperors, British rule made the payment of land revenue a compulsion. The responsibility of revenue collection was vested with the zamindars. The burden of this proved to be enormous for the peasants and a large number of them were forced to sell their lands, only to become landless labourers. The moneylenders, liquor vendors and other people from outside the region exploited this situation Hence a new class of absentee landlords was also created.
  • The land question here requires some more attention. The adivasis of this region conceived of themselves as natural owners of the land, which they have reclaimed by extensive labour. Moreover, land and the forest were not merely viewed as means of production in their custom. They were rather, culturally and religiously, associated with the land and forest. So, they could hardly tolerate their alienation from the land and the forest as created by the British agrarian policies.
  • Phase of Agrarian Movement (1765 -1845)

      "True agrarian movements have arisen whenever urban interests have encroached, in fact, or in seeming, upon vital rural interests."

      Hence agrarian movements take place whenever urban penetration occurs in the rural areas. It may be through the influence of urban values, (as for example, interdependence, individualism etc.) or through the acquisition of better lands in the rural area, imposition of land revenue, land tax and so on.

      The major peasant uprisings of this phase are as following:

1. First Chuar Rebellion (1767.)

2. Dhalbhum Rebellion (1769 -1774)

3. Tilka Majhi's War (1780--1785)

4. Pahadia Revolt (1788 -1791)

5. First Tamar Rebellion (1795)

6. Second Chuar Rebellion (1798-1799)

7. Nayek Hangama (1806 -1826)

8. Second Tamar Rebellion (1820)

9. Kol Insurrection (1831 -1832)

10. Ganga Narayan's Movement (1832 -1833)

      British encroachment into the Jharkhand region started in the year 1765 after receiving the 'Dewani' of Bengal, Bihar and Orissa. At its initial stage colonial administrators were basically interested in collecting land revenues from this region which was quite inaccessible due to its heavy hilly and forest covers. Apart from this the British administrators had to face another difficulty and that was concerning the attitude of the indigenous communities who refused to pay land revenues, as this was not be fitting to their customs. Hence payment of land revenue and that too in a compulsory manner was the basic reason behind the uprisings of this phase, especially those prior to 1793, the year in which the Permanent Settlement Regulation Act was enacted.

      The Permanent Settlement Act of 1793 brought certain administrative changes, which much more directly undermined the customs of the adivasi communities of this region. Firstly, the payment of land revenue by the cultivators to their chiefs were customarily guided but the Permanent Settlement Act

      Secondly, the law and order of this region was maintained by the 'ghatwals' or the pykes under the command of the local chiefs who were well informed of the customs and local cultures of the people. These pykes enjoyed gifts of lands from their chiefs for the service rendered by them.

      Thirdly, due to strict revenue assessment most of the local chiefs were found in huge arrears and their estates were auctioned to meet the revenue balances. The indigenous communities had a traditional organic relationship with their chiefs and could not bear the system that eventually led to their extinction. Finally, and most importantly, the estates of the local chiefs in arrears were auctioned, and in most of the cases, these were purchased by the outsiders, mostly non-adivasi zamindars.

      Hence, the Permanent Settlement Act of 1793 marginalised the peasantry economically and also drove them towards a state of cultural alienation. The traditional economic and political organisations of the indigenous people centering on the autonomous village community were undermined.

      The second Chuar Rebellion of 1798-1799, later on the Kol Insurrection of 1831-1832 and the Ganga Narayan's uprising of 1832-1833most prominently showed this trend. In all these the adivasi communities especially the Bhumijs of the Jungle Mahal and adjacent areas of the Chotanagpur plateau region participated in large numbers.


  • Phase of Consolidation (1845-1920)

      These outsiders were mostly the zamindars, moneylenders, etc. created by the British rule, and they used to exploit the peasantry severally.

  • The major uprisings of the second phase are as under:

1. The Santhal Insurrection (1855)

2. The Sipoy Mutiny (1857)

3. Sardari Agitation or Mulkui Larai (1858-1895)

4. Kherwar Movement (1874)

5. The Birsa Munda Movement (1895-1900)

6. Tana Bhagat Movement (1914-1919)

      This was most prominent in the Santhal Insurrection, Kherwar Movement and Birsa Munda Movement. The first two, being predominantly participated by the Santhals tried to establish the Santhal Raj while the Birsa Munda Movement went for the Munda Raj under the leadership of Birsa Munda.


  • Agrarian Movement in India-


Understanding Peasant movement

          Peasant movements were almost unknown to the academy, and agrarian structures were expressed solely in the reigning idiom of British policy or economic history.

          Rajendra Prasad, Jawaharlal Nehru, Mahadev Desai and tens of other nationalist leaders had written accounts directed at the iniquities of the Indian agrarian social order but mainly directed at the fact of British rule.

          Peasant movements and nationalist politics pressured policy making towards, first, modifying and then ending the era of landlordism in colonial India. Agrarian power at Indian Independence stood redefined.

          The questions that became dated pertained to the role that peasants played in the transformation of the social order.

          British policy in India increasingly became one of support for landlords through whom the officialdom of empire sought to protect their dominions.

          Every now and then there was a deviation from this policy to accommodate the pressure generated by an unequal agrarian society which, under the impact of the market, produced peasant movements

          Between 1930 and 1935 when prices of agricultural produce did indeed fall, there was a rise in prices over this entire period.

          Greatest impact which such a rise in prices produced was manifest in a developing struggle between landlord and peasant for control over the increased value of agricultural surplus. The landlord raised rents. Tenants protested.

          Many of those peasants who won tenancy and property rights against the landlords themselves became rent-receivers. They rented out the land rented in (or acquired after a struggle) from superior proprietors. Many others became rich cultivators

         The Blue Mutiny, 1859-1862

          Poor peasants and small landlords opposed indigo planters in Bengal. In this they were helped by moneylenders whose own credit resources stood threatened by the structure of the monopolistic rights of the planters.

         The Pabna and Boora Uprisings, 1872-1875

          Rich cultivators, benefiting from the commercialization of agriculture and producing cash crops, protested to secure further their occupancy rights granted nominally in 1859. In this they succeeded by 1885 when the Bengal Tenancy Act was passed. Later, by the middle twentieth century, such tenants were transformed into rent-receivers.

         The Mappilla Rebellions, 1836-1921

          Poor peasants in Malabar (Kerala) protested for security of tenure. This was granted in 1887 and 1929. But only a rich tenantry benefited from these movements. This tenantry itself acquired afresh and consolidated further its rights as rent-receivers vis--vis.

         The Deccan Riots, 1875

          Up against a heavy land revenue demand of the state, 1840-1870,cultivators lost their lands to moneylenders from the towns.

          The state intervened to legislate in favor of the 'agriculturists' in 1879. The state's pro-landlord stance therefore could also become pro-peasant as long as the framework within which it realized its land revenue did not alter to its disadvantage.

         Punjab Agrarian Riots, 1907

          The state intervened to prevent alienation of land from peasants to moneylenders in 1900 but urban middle classes protested, in nationalist idiom, against government intervention. Riots broke out against moneylenders. The government appeared pro-peasant, as the peasants rioted against 'agriculturalist' moneylenders, who were landlords. Landlords we might recall were over the long term supported by British rule.

         Peasant Movements in Oudh. 1918 - 1922

          The peasants of eastern Uttar Pradesh defied large landlords through a tenants movement for security of tenure. Oppressive traditions of forced labour were attacked through fierce agrarian riots. Small landlords and the rural poor supported and led the movement. Statutory rights of occupancy were secured in 1921.The movement marked a phase of retreat for landlordism.

         Peasant Protest against Indigo Cultivation in North Bihar, 1860-1920 and Champaran. 1907-1909 and 1917-1918

          Moneylenders and rich peasants voiced grievances of indebted small peasantry and agricultural labourers. Planters of indigo were put to rout by the rural hierarchy was left undisturbed. The movement signified the emergence of the peasant as a symbol in a nationalist ideology.

         Agrarian Unrest in Uttar Pradesh, 1930-1932

          When prices slumped, peasants could not pay rents to landlords nor landlords revenue to the state. The Indian National Congress launched a no-rent no-revenue campaign of middle and rich peasants, supported by the rural poor, and small property holders. The movement marked a simultaneous retreat for landlordism and an attrition of the political domination of the colonial state.

         Peasant Agitations in Kheda, 1917-1934 and Bardoli, 1928

          In Bardoli a proletariat in traditional agrestic servitude protested against an increased land revenue valuation alongside a dominant and in relation to the 'serfs' exploitative peasant community. The 'serfs' were partly convinced of the validity of nationalist ideology as represented to them and were in part coerced into joining the movement.

         Peasant Struggles in Bihar, 1933-1942

          When prices fell in 1930, the rents to which tenants had agreed in a period of rising prices (1900-1920) became too heavy to bear. Peasants were evicted by landlords as the latter attempted to increase their power and control. The tenants movement that developed sought to regain control over the lands from which the peasants had been evicted.

         Share-croppers Agitation in Bengal, 1938-1950

          The share-croppers were mostly poor peasants with very small holdings who fought landlords for security from eviction and aright to at least two-thirds of the produce.

          In legislation in 1950 and in 1978-1979 these rights were recognized and pushed through despite landlord opposition by various governments in Independent India.

         The Telengana Rebellion, Hyderabad, 1946-1951

          A movement involving sustained armed struggle of rich peasants and the rural poor. The peasantry sought to destroy the political

          power of large landlords while the agricultural labourers fought against forced labour.

         Tebhaga Movement in 1946- North Bengal

          Proletariat militant struggle in North Bengal. The stir shaped his vision of a revolutionary struggle.

          The Naxalbari uprising of March 1967.The armed peasants' struggle began in Naxalbadi in West Bengal on March 2, 1967 when a tribal youth named Wimal Kesan, who had a judicial order, went to plough his land. Local landlords attacked him through their goons. This sparked wide-scale violence by tribal who started capturing back their lands and then starts Naxalite movement.


  • Tebhaga Movement of Bengal ( Case Study)-


          Tebhaga means- three parts.


        Two third share of total yield will be for cultivator and one third will be for the Jotdar.

        For the labourers of the husking of the Paddy- labour who involved in husking of paddy will get 7 Aras out of 20 Aras and owner of the product will get 13 Aras.

Movement area- North Bengal (Undivided Bengal) Jalpaiguri, Dinajpur, Malda, Rajsahee,Ranpur Bogra and adjacent part of Pabna.

          Cause of Movement- Zamindari-Jotdari system of British rule.

          Land distribution System-

1.      ZAMINDARS:

           GOT LEASE OF LAND through permanent settlement

          Link between zamindars and british was through “ Tax”

2. JOTDARS: Got land from Zamindars through “ PATTANI”

3.Individual, small and big farmers: Directly pay taxes to zamindars through the NAYAB and tahsildar system of zamindars.

Jotdar system of cultivation

          Employ agri.labour.

          Lease of land to others.

          Terms and condition.—Adhiary Pratha

          Exploitation elements.

                                    ZOTDAR             CULTIVATOR

          Land                owner                  on Lease

          Investment                  Nil                          all cost  
Labour              Nil                       Extra

          Implication                    Rich                     Slave


Movement -ground


          People agitated and grievance grew due to worse economic situation in post war 11, followed by FAMINE 1942.

          Bengal was governed by ML with Mr.Saheed Surwady as CM

          This all unrest with the PEASANTS lead to economic and unbearable situation and led to movement later known as TEBHAGA MOVEMENT.


          Movement sparked off in an area under PS chirrirbander in Dinajpur under communist leader Rupnarayan Roy (local organsior of Kisan Samity-MLA-1946)

          He led a movement to organize Peasants.

          Jotdar men could come for 50% yield

          Refusal of farmer on 50% and offering 33%

          Serious fight took place

          Police intervention and killing of a Peasant

          Local villagers joined and police retreat

          Police atrocities later on ( physical torture, arrest)



1946-the journey started and ila was talking part in the society.



-Education for all a movement

-Got opportunity to mix with Peasants especially adivasis- a cultivator class with no land of their own.

-Communist party worked within underground

-local peasant leader ally with communist and kisan samity prepared ground for tebhaga movement-1948-1950.

-Local leaders involvement.

This was the time when the andolan was getting momentun but on the other side govt. was crushing it in other districts.

          Sensitive area.

          Ila’s extensive tour to village to village.

          Organization  of defence force.

          Tebhaga doctorine – implemented –1949.

          Followed by other zamindar and zotdar through imposition.

          By 1950 – almost all were forced to accept.

          LATER ON

          Appeal by the Zamindar ,Zotdar and revenge.

          Police let loose reign of terror and oppression.                      

JAN 5th – 1950

          Police arrived in chandipur.

          Arrested activists and tortured.

          Villagers send messages to other villages.

          Killing of police

 JAN 7th —1950

          Solidier arrived at Nachol.

          Search of leader –Door to Door.

          Incapability of defence force.

          Groups crossec over to India .

JAN 8th – 1950

          Leaders were arrested.

          Ramen Mitra crossed the border.

          Ila Mitra arrested .

          Police tortured to companions.

          Horror torture of Ila.

“She was treated like worse than an Animal”.

 “Civilized govt use it state machinary to the extreme brutality to torture in the name of extracting confession.







Group discussion on the basis of presentation and the material provided to the participants for the understanding of the historical perspective and for the future orientation in context of Orissa.


Summary of the group discussion

  • Tebhaga movement was the combination of tribal and peasant movement.
  • It is the post independence movement for land.
  • There was strong and committed leadership but also leadership was in crisis.
  • Government suppressed the land movement.
  • It was the process of mass mobilization in the community.
  • Women empowerment and their role were vital.
  • Attention drawn towards education to all and it was the key slogan in the beginning of the community mobilization.
  • Regional issue can became the national issue.
  • Land issue can’t be addressed in isolation.
  • Women empowerment is necessary for the success of movement.
  • After the movement bargaining of the farmers enhanced.
  • Zamindari System got abolished while enacting the act in 1950.
  • Political party was also associated with the movement.
  • It was the issue of mass.
  • Backward and upper class community also associated with the movement.
  • Tebhaga movement is the beginning of the land movement in Independence India.
  • Tebhaga movement is both violence and non- violence.
  • Livelihood based movement can only ensure the participation of all.
  • Literacy and awareness in the community before movement building process is very necessary.
  • There was a lack on involvement of external agency in the people centric movement.
  • Revenue is the main cause of dissatisfaction in the farmer’s community and igniting factor for the movement.
  • It was the intention of the government to push the non tribal forces in the tribal governance process.
  • Whether act and regulation is coming after the struggle or first acts and regulation then struggle for policy change.
  • Role of communist Party of India was also seen in the movement.
  • There is no end of movement it is the continuous process.
  • Tehaga Movement was the successful movement in context to mass mobilization for basic change in regulation.
  • Movement is movement and it is not formal type of structure.
  • Outside community like businessman and the middleman intervened in the tribal community and has created the unrest in the tribal community; it is one of the major components for land alienation in the tribal community.
  • All the tribal and agrarian movement at last comes to the common movement i.e. Nationalist movement of India.
  • Coastal Orissa is a situation like the area of Tebhaga movement.
  • Agricultural labourers are being exploited in coastal region of Orissa.
  • Movement is a natural process.
  • Analysis over the role of bureaucrats in the Orissa context is very necessary.


3rd Day-   date- 18/5/06 day- Thursday

Starting Time-9.00 a.m


Presentation has been made on the Bengal Permanent Regulation Act.

Orissa Act,

Bengal Regulations in Force in the State of Orissa


          The Bengal Land revenue Regulation, 1793

          The Bengal decennial Settlement Regulation 1793.

          The Bengal Inheritance regulation, 1793.

          The Bengal Revenue- Free lands (Non Badshahi Grants) Regulation, 1793.

          The Bengal Revenue- Free lands (Badshahi Grants) Regulation, 1793.

          The Indian Civil Service (Bengal) Loans prohibition regulation, 1793.

          The Bengal Revenue Officers Regulation, 1794.

          The Revenue-Free Lands Regulation, 1800.

          The Bengal Land Revenue Assessment Regulation 1801.

          The Cuttack Land Revenue Regulation, 1805.

          The Cuttack Police Regulation, 1805

          The Bengal Land Revenue sales Regulation, 1812.

          The Bengal Patwaries Regulation, 1817.

          The Bengal Land Revenue Assessment (resumed Land) Regulation, 1819.

          The Bengal Land Revenue (Assistant Collectors) Regulation, 1821.

          The Bengal Land Revenue Settlement Regulation, 1822.

          The Bengal Indigo Contracts regulation, 1823.

          The Bengal Land Revenue Settlement Regulation, 1825.

          The Bengal Land Revenue Settlement (Resumed Kanungos and Revenue free land) Regulation, 1825.

          The Bengal Land Revenue Settlement Regulation, 1828.

          The Bengal Indigo Contracts regulation 1830.

          The Bengal Land Revenue ( Settlement and Deputy Collectors ) Regulation, 1833.

Local Acts of the Governor general of
India in Council and central Acts in Force in the State of Orissa


          The Bengal Indigo Contracts Act, 1836.

          The Bengal Land Revenue sales Act, 1844.

          The Land-holders attendance Act, 1848.

          The Rent recovery Act, 1853.

          The Bengal Land- revenue sales Act, 1859.

          The Bengal, Bihar and Orissa and Assam Laws Act, 1912.




         The Bengal Land revenue Regulation, 1793

o        Regulation for abolishing the courts of Mal Adalat or Revenue Courts, and transferring the trial of the suits which were cognizable in those courts to the courts of Diwani Adalat and prescribing Rules for the conduct of the Board of Revenue and the Collectors.


o       Section-1

          In ***Bengal the greater part of the materials required for the numerous and valuable manufacturers, and most of the other principal articles of export, are the produce of the lands. It follows that the commerce, and consequently the wealth of the country, must increase on proportion to the extension of its agriculture.

          But it is not commercial purposes alone that the encouragement of agriculture is essential to the welfare of these provinces.

          The property in the soil has been declared to be vested in the landholders and the revenue payable to Government from each estate has been fixed for ever.

***(the words “the British territories in” omitted by the Adaptation of laws order,1950.


          The property in the soil was never before formally declared to be vested in the landholders, nor were they allowed to transfer such rights as they did posses or raise money upon the credit of their tenures, without the previous sanction of government.

          The amount of it was fixed upon an estimate formed by the public officers of the aggregate of the rents payable by the raiyats or tenants for each bigha of land in cultivation, of which, after deducting the expenses of collection, ten-elevenths were usually considered as the right of the public and the remainder the share of the landholders.

         All questions between government and the land-holders respecting the assessment and collection of the public revenue, and disputed claims between the latter and their raiyats, or other persons concerned in the collection of their rents, have hitherto been cognizable in the courts of Mal Adalat or Revenue Courts.

          Collector is the only empowered agents of Government.

          Collector and the dependent of collector are prohibited from direct and indirect purchase of land during public sale.

          Board of Revenue is to issue the usual bondobasti parwan to the proprietor or farmer.

          The collection of revenue is committed to the collector.


         The Bengal decennial Settlement Regulation 1793

          A Regulation for re-enacting, with modifications and amendments, the rules for the Decennial settlement of the public revenue payable from the lands of the zamindars, independent talukdars and other actual proprietors of land, in {Bengal, Bihar and} Orissa passed for those provinces, on 10th February 1790 and subsequent dates.

          Female ( excepting those whom the State Government may judge competent to the management of their own state), minors, idiots, lunatics or other rendered incapable of managing their lands by natural defects or infirmities of whatever nature, they are not partners in the zamindaris, independent taluks or other estates held by them.

          Proprietors in balance to government and unable to pay the arrears due from them, in which instances no settlement is to be concluded with the defaulting proprietors, but their lands are to be let in farm, or held khas for a period of three years, at the discretion of the Collector.

          If no claimants has been previously in possession then the lands to be held khas.

          Where the dispute exists concerning the boundaries of land, they are to be adjusted in the Diwani Adalat.

          Allowances of Kazis and Kanungos, and public pensions to be paid by the landholders and to be be added in the account of the Jama.

          The collection made in the ganjes, hats and bazars.

          The assessment is also to be fixed exclusive and independent of all existing lakhiraj lands, whether exempted from the khiraj (or public revenue) with or without authority.

          The Chakaran lands, lands held by public officers and private servants in lieu of wages are also not meant to be included in the exception, are to be included in the category of malguzari land and should be assessed on the zamindari or taluk.

          Adjustment of mufasal kistbandis.

The Bengal Inheritance regulation, 1793.

          A Regulation for removing certain restrictions to the operation of the Hindu and Mohammedan laws with regard to the inheritance of landed property subject to the payment of revenue to Government.

          Upon the death of the proprietor of one of these estates it devolves entire to the eldest son, or next heir of the deceased, to the exclusion of all other sons or relations.

          This custom will be applicable for both Hindu and Mohammedans.

          Estate how held on death of actual proprietor.

          Shares held separate how assessed.

The Bengal Revenue- Free lands (Non Badshahi Grants) Regulation, 1793.

          A regulation for re-enacting, with modifications, the rules passed by the Governor- General in council on the 1st December 1790, for trying the validity of the titles of persons holding, or claiming a right to hold, lands exempted from the payment of revenue to Government, under grants not being of the description of those termed badshahi or royal, and for determining the amount of the annual assessment to be imposed on lands so held, which may be adjudged or become liable to the payment of public revenue.

          Present possessors prohibited from transferring or mortgaging grants.

          Courts how to proceed in case of doubts of authority of officer confirming grants.

          And also of certain grants made for religions or charitable purpose.

          The Collectors of the revenue are to defend all suits that may be instituted against Government by any individual claiming a right to hold lands exempt from the payment of public revenue, and such suits, and the suits which the Board of Revenue may direct the Collector to institute, are to be defended and prosecuted by the Vakil of Government under the instructions of the Collector.

          All persons actually holding lands exempt from the payment of public revenue, whether exceeding or under one hundred bighas should have to register within the period of one year from the date of publication.

The Bengal Revenue- Free lands (Badshahi Grants) Regulation, 1793.

          A Regulation for re-enacting, with modifications, the rule passed on the 23rd April, 1788 and subsequent dates, for trying the validity of the titles of persons holding or claiming a right to hold altamgha, jagir and other lands exempt from the payment of public revenue under grants termed badshahi or royal and for determining when certain grants of that description shall be considered to have expired, and for fixing the amount of the public revenue to the assessed upon the lands that grants for which may expire or be adjudged invalid.

The Indian civil service (Bengal) Loans prohibition regulation, 1793.

          At an early period after the establishment of the British Government in this country the servants of the company employed in the administration of justice and the collection of revenue were prohibited from lending money to the landholders and farmers and other concerned in the collection or payment of the revenue, in order to guard against the abuses that the powers with which they were invested would have enabled them to practice had they seen permitted to engage in such transactions with individuals with individuals subject to their official control and authority.

The Bengal Revenue Officers Regulation, 1794

          A Regulation for prescribing the process by which tahsildars are to demand payment of arrears, and for enabling the collectors to recover from officers employed under them public papers which they may retain.

          The suit is to be carried on by the Vakil of (the State) Government and at the public expense, and the rules in Regulation XIV, 1793 regarding suits so carried on by the Collectors, are to be held applicable to it.

The Revenue-Free Lands Regulation, 1800.

         A regulation for registers of Estates paying revenue and lands held exempt from the payment of revenue.

         Extension of period for registration of revenue free grants, and assessment thereafter of all unregistered lands.

The Bengal Land Revenue Assessment Regulation 1801.

          A regulation to explain and amend the rules for the division of joint estates and allotment of the fixed assessment thereupon.

          All purchasers of lands at the public sales are required to attend the collector of the district wherein the lands may be situated, either in person or by their representatives duly authorized and to execute the usual kabuliyat and Kistbandi for the public revenue assessed upon the lands purchased by them.

          In cases of doubts as to the real purchaser the collector is authorized to cause the personal attendance of the alleged purchaser at his cutcherry if resident within his jurisdiction.

The Cuttack land revenue regulation 1805

          A regulation for the settlement and collection of the public revenue in the Zila of Cuttack, including the Pargana(s) of (Pataspur) kamaxdachor ( and Bhograi) at present included in the Zila of Midnapore.

          Donation for the support of the temple of Jaganath, the charitable donation to the officers of certain Hindu temples, called Anuchatri, and the allowance granted for the support of the Hindu temple at Cuttack called Sitaram Thakur Bari.

          The commissioners having granted sanads to certain zamindars (Hindu and Muslim), entitling them to hold their estates at a fixed jama in perpetuity, those sanads are hereby confirmed.

The Cuttack Police regulation 1805

          A Regulation for the maintenance of the peace and for the support and administration of the police in the Zila of Cuttack.

          It is essential to the security of the persons and property of the inhabitants of the districts and lands included in Cuttack and its dependencies that a regular and efficient system of police should be maintained in the Cuttack.

          Rules for appointment of darogas.

          Certain Zamindars to continue to act as police officers in their respective estates.

          That is the principal Zamindars, talukdars and other landholders being proprietors of large estates shall be constituted darogas of police within the limits of their respective possessions.

          Salaries of darogas.

          Any Zamindars, talukdar or holders of land exempt from revenue who may be suspected before criminal courts of the country, and punished on conviction under the general laws and regulations of the country.

The Bengal Land Revenue sales Regulation, 1812.

         A regulation for amending some of the rules at present in force for the collection of the land revenue.

         Proprietors competent to grant lease for any term.

         Proprietors competent to grant lease and receive engagement in any convenient form.

The Bengal KANUNGOS Regulation 1816

          A regulation for establishing the Office of Kanungo in the district of Cuttack, the Pargana of pataspur, and the several parganas dependent on it.

          Office of the Kanungo is not hereditary

          Salaries of Kanungo

          Duties of Kanungo.

The Bengal Patwaries Regulation, 1817.

          A regulation for securing the better administration of the office of Patwari.

          Every village to have separate Patwari.

          Patwari shall be appointed by the Collector.

          Procedure of Zamindars wishimg to remove patwari.

          Penalties for removing patwari without authority.

          Duties of patwari ( to keep registers and accounts relating to the village) report to the Kanungo.


The Bengal Police Regulation 1817

          A Regulation for reducing into one regulation, with amendments and modification, the several rules which have been passed for the guidance of darogas and other subordinate officers of police.

          Darogas to keep complete list of village watchmen.

          Zamindars or others to nominate successors on occurrence of vacancy.

          Delivery of reports of watchman residing at a certain distance from the thana.

          Village watchman resist robbers and to require Zamindars and headman to assist to pursuit and apprehension of criminals.

The Bengal State prisoners Regulation 1818

          A regulation for the confinement of State Prisoners.

          Whereas (reasons of State connected with defense, (or foreign affairs)* or with the maintenance of public order, occasionally render it necessary to place under personal restraint individuals against whom there may not be sufficient ground to institute any judicial proceeding, or when such proceeding may not be adapted to the nature of the case, or may for other reasons be unadvisable or improper.


*Substituted by the Adoption of Laws Order, 1950 for external affairs or relation with Acceding States.



The Bengal Land Revenue Assessment (resumed Land) Regulation, 1819.

          A Regulation for modifying the provisions contained in the existing regulation, regarding the resumption of the revenue of lands held free of assessment under illegal or invalid tenures, and for defining the rights of Government to the revenue of lands not included within the limits of estates for which a settlement has been made.

The Bengal Land Revenue (Assistant Collectors) Regulation, 1821.

          A Regulation for explaining the duties of an assistant Collector of revenue, and for defining the duties and powers vested in Assistant Collectors or other officers appointed to the charge of the revenues of parganas or other local divisions, or employed in the performance of any portion of the functions ordinarily belonging to the Collectors of land revenue

The Bengal Land Revenue Settlement Regulation, 1822

          General rule relative to Zamindars holding on after expiration of their lease.

          Admission of particular persons to engage for payment of revenue not to bar revenue officers from interfering to adjust.

          Rights of the persons or classes.

          Malikana to be allowed proprietors of estates framed or held Khas.

          Zamindars may be called upon to state jama for which they are willing to engage.

          Pattas granted on revised settlement to cover only lands specified.

          Where the waste land belonging to or adjoining any mahal is very extensive, so as considerably to exceed the quantity required for pasturage, or otherwise usefully appropriated, it shall be competent to the Revenue- Officers to grant lease for the same to any persons who may willing to undertake the cultivation in perpetuity of for such periods.

          The names of all village-patwaries and village watchmen shall also be registered, with a statement of the amount and nature of the allowances assigned them.

          A record shall likewise be formed of the rates per bigha of each description of land or kind of produce.

          Collectors, etc. may grant pattas mufassal zamindars and raiyats.

          Rise of rent of cultivating proprietors of lands of which revenue collected khas or farmed.

          Rules for guidance of Collectors their powers.

          Collector’s kucherry be called as civil Court.

          Police officers to aid execution of process and orders of Collectors.

The Bengal Indigo Contracts regulation, 1823

          A regulation for authorizing the institution of summary suits to enforce the execution of certain written engagements for the cultivation and delivery of the indigo-plant, and for declaring certain principles in regard to the same.

          The poverty of the lower orders in India, and particularly of those employed in agriculture, occasions the general use of borrowed capital for the production of the chief articles of trade and consumption.

          The capitalist advances his money, and sometimes the seed likewise, upon a contract to receive the produce of a defined quantity of land, either at a certain fixed price, or at rates to be subsequently determined with reference to the market.

          According to the existing Regulation, if the contracting raiyats should fail to cultivate the lands in the manner specified, or, having so cultivated the land, should sell the produce to another, or otherwise defraud his creditors and fail to execute his contract by delivery of the stipulated articles, the person with whom he has no other remedy of the penalty conditioned in the agreement.

          If any person shall have given advances to a raiyats, or other cultivator of the soil, under a written engagement, stipulating for the cultivation of indigo-plant on a portion of lands of certain defined limits, and for the delivery of the produce to himself or at a specified factory or place, such person shall be considered to have a lien or interest in the indigo-plant produced on such land and shall be entitled to avail himself of the process hereinafter provided for the protection of his interests and for the due execution of the condition of the contract.

The Indian Civil service (Bengal) Loans Prohibition Regulation, 1823

          A Regulation for prohibiting loans by covenanted Civil servants from persons subject to their official authority and influence.

          Civil Servants prohibited from borrowing money from officers under their authority, etc.

          Penalty for lending money to Civil servants.

The Bengal land- Revenue settlement Regulation,1825

          A regulation for extending the operation of regulation VII. 1822, for authorizing the revenue- authorities to let in farm estates under temporary leases, on the default of the malguzars, or to hold the same khas for a term of years, for modifying and adding to the rules contained in regulation II, 1819, and for making certain other amendments in the existing regulation.

          Procedures when arrears of revenue on account of mahals not permanently assessed is not paid within one month after due date, and objections appear to public sale.


The Bengal Revenue Commissioners regulation 1829

          A Regulation for constituting commissioners of Revenue and Circuit.

          The system in operation for superintending the magistracy and the police, and for controlling and directing the executive Revenue Officers, who in several cases are also Magistrates, has been found to be defective.

          Commissioners to have powers of Boards of revenue and courts of Wards.



After the presentation group went to discussion and debate in the small groups of each and every Organization and focused on only two issues- how the process of land reform and land movement can be carried forward and what is your key learning in the three days workshop.


OUTCOME of the three days workshop-

Key Learning from the side of the Workshop participants.

    • Understanding have been developed among the participants on Historical perspective on land issues, basically in two things-
      • Collection of Revenue
      • Structural system.
    • Understanding have been developed on political dimension of the Tebhaga movement and key strategic actions like-
        • Process of women empowerment.
        • Strong leadership by Ila Mitra.
        • Education for all agenda to organise all.
    • Understood the facts and politics of the Land acquisition act of 1894 and after the amendment of the act.


Future planning after the Workshop


o        Analysis of policies and acts related to land at organizational level.

o        Orientation to the project staff on the political dunamics of the land rights

o        District level rally on the issue of land with the district level alliance.

    • Disseminate information among the network level and the working staff.
    • Discussion, debate, workshop with the people’s organization on political analysis of various land related movement and Acts/ Regulation for the same.