Draft bill of new law for sharecroppers is ready

Bhubaneswar: The Revenue department has prepared the draft bill of a new act for sharecroppers after seeking suggestions from the inter-ministerial committee.

Damodar Rout, a member of the inter-ministerial committee, said, “We had asked for reports from farmers of different areas. The state government is planning to formulate a law on the basis of these reports. We have tried to keep the interest of sharecroppers in the draft bill.”

As per a copy of the draft bill, which is in possession of OTV, a landowner and sharecropper will sign an agreement in a requisite format in the presence of Revenue Inspector (RI) or sarpanch. The landowner will not interfere in the use of the land from the date of signing of the agreement.

However, the landowner can donate, sell or mortgage the land and the sharecropper can plough the agricultural land till the end of the agreement period, the draft bill added.

The landowner has to pay revenue and water taxes.

With the implementation of the new law, sharecroppers will be able to avail benefits of crop insurance, agri loan and calamity aid. Besides, the sharecroppers will provide a share of the crop to the land owner as per the agreement.

Commenting on the development, Ashok Pradhan, a farmer leader of Sambalpur, said “If landowners get an assurance that the ownership of the land will not be at stake with this new law, the issue can be resolved.”

The law for the sharecroppers will come up for a discussion in the State Cabinet after the Law department examines it.

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