The draft of ‘Land Crime Prevention and Redress Act, 2021’ has been published on the land ministry website for opinions from all stakeholders.
Land Minister Saifuzzaman Chowdhury came up with the development while addressing the Deputy Commissioners in the DC Conference 2022 held in Osmani Memorial Auditorium in the capital on Thursday.
The minister revealed this while speaking at the conference as the chief guest at the working session of the Land Ministry.
Cabinet Secretary Khandker Anwarul Islam chaired the session while Land Secretary Mohammad Mustafizur Rahman PAA, Chairman of the Land Reform Board Suleman Khan, and senior officials of the Cabinet Division, Ministry of Land, and its departments were present at the session.
Saifuzzaman Chowdhury said that the draft of ‘Land Crime Prevention and Redress Act, 2021’ has been drafted, making illegal land grabbing a criminal offence.
The land minister also said that the draft of ‘Land Uses Act 2021’ for farmland protection, food security, and to reduce the harmful effects of climate change.
Mr Chowdhury directed DCs to rescue the Khas (government owned) land and to ensure three-field arable land protection for food security. The Land Minister reiterated the Prime Minister’s instruction to construct combined highrise office buildings for different government offices in one place.
Saifuzzaman also said the Power of Attorney system in the Land Acquisition case (LA Case) is under consideration to be rescinded in general case.
Widespread corruption is taking place through Power of Attorney during the acquisition process and payment of compensation, the minister said.
Especially the common people in the rural areas are regularly being deceived and harassed by dishonest person. For this reason, except for special matters, revoking of Power of Attorney in the LA case is under consideration, he stated.
The land minister said that, under this considered system, in special cases, such as those living abroad, can give Power of Attorney through the embassies of Bangladesh abroad. In addition, Power of Attorney can also be given in case of a critically ill person and other applicable cases by applying to the DC. The minister said a final decision in this regard will be taken based on everyone’s opinion.
In this session, the Deputy Commissioners expressed their views and asked questions. Various issues related to land management, including mutation, Haat and Bazar, land office construction, water bodies, land management, the court of wards, human resource and training, digitalization, innovation in land management have been discussed in the session.
It is to be noted that the Deputy Commissioner as a Collector is the designated officer at the district level to provide all related services, including land revenue and land management, except for land registration and land survey.
After the session, the land minister met the press and answered the questions from the journalists regarding the directions he has given to the Deputy Commissioners.