Legal Aspects of Tenure and Housing Finance in Informal Settlements: Law and Practice from Indian States
Posted: 4 Jul 2013
Date Written: December 16, 2012
In my report I look at the legal characteristics of land tenure, and related issues around planning status in informal settlements. Broadly, the objective of this analysis is to deepen broad brush characterisations of these settlements as illegal. I looked at 3 kinds of settlements: slums, urbanised villages and unauthorised colonies. Terminology for these settlements vary across states, and legal frameworks applicable to land and planning status are largely state-specific in India. For this reason, I refer to some case study states. Based on these case study states however, it is possible to development some broad principles and a typology that is more generally applicable across the country.
Tenure in informal settlements could be ‘rights in property’ which are legally enforceable rights in relation to property which are recognised under the law relating to immoveable property, most of which is codified in the Transfer of Property Act. However, there are also a stable but intermediate rights which are not rights in property. It is a little more difficult to establish the extent to which these rights are formal, and the relation that ‘perceived security’ (as perceived by people who live in these settlements) has to legal status and administrative action.
Keywords: Informal Settlements, Land Tenure, Slum Upgrading, India, Law and Development
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