Land and Land reforms are social reforms and changes intended to bring about equitable land distribution. Although India has very harsh inequality in terms of wealth, it does not have many social reform movements.
Although India has very harsh inequality in terms of wealth, it does not have as many social reform movements as some other countries, such as the United States. The Indian government cannot enact land reforms because its policies are responsible for this lack.
It is responsible for many laws in India that govern land ownership which are the main factors limiting the passage of land reforms.
Land and Land Reforms
Land is defined as property possessed in a very broad sense. As it includes immovable and movable property, the land is a social concept. Various agencies define land as such, including the Government of India, the Planning Commission of India, and the Ministry of Finance of India. According to these definitions, land includes all sorts of real estate such as agricultural land, commercial plots, construction sites, etc.; all types of natural resources; all types of minerals; oil fields, parts of bodies or soils, etc.
Land reform gives land ownership to the people who work that piece of land, thus improving their living conditions. Land and Land reforms are beneficial to the country and its people. Land reforms are not just a great gift to the poor and needy; they also make society better and more stable. They give farmers a sense of ownership and dignity, which is important in building a good relationship between tenant farmers and landlords.
Though the word land is used as a synonym for real estate, it is not. The land has a special meaning in society, especially in ownership. Land reforms are the redistribution of land and consolidation of land. Land and Land reforms give land ownership to the people who work that piece of land, thus improving their living conditions, and those who do not have productive means of employment get good wages through working on farms and getting rid of poverty and hunger.
Land Reforms in India
Land in India is referred to as a social asset because the law distinguishes the ownership of land and an individual’s right to use land, which is very important in allocating land resources. The land is an inalienable asset because individuals can have legal rights only over the land they currently possess and not the land they might desire. The law declares that an individual can have the right to use land provided possession of the land is in their name. An individual does not have a right to use land from somebody else. The land also provides a form of security for a person because they own it and cannot be disposed of by anyone except if there are extraordinary circumstances such as where food will be denied to a child or if there is fear of bad weather or natural calamity. Land reforms are policies adopted by the government to correct the imbalance in ownership, use, and distribution. Land reforms help improve the living conditions of landless poor and agricultural laborers.
The legislation for Indian land reforms has been passed into law only at the state level.
Land reforms in India have helped improve the lives of millions of people. Land reforms have led to increased agricultural production and a decline in poverty. The number of landless, which was one-third of all poor, has decreased from 57% (1983) to 5% (1997). Landless households (for temporary and permanent reasons) were estimated at 16% in 1994.
The Land reforms aim to redress the imbalance in land ownership, distribution, and use. The Land reforms legislation is intended to empower the poor farmers and agricultural laborers who are primarily dependent on agriculture for their livelihood.
Objectives of Land and Land Reforms
The main objectives of land reforms can be summarized as follows:
- Increase agricultural productivity through investments by landholders in agricultural extension, agro-processing, marketing, and value-added services. This will also contribute to stabilizing food prices and increasing household income.
- Reduce poverty and increase the incomes of landless poor and marginal farmers by giving them improved access to credit and market facilities.
- Provide a sustainable, efficient, and equitable mechanism for land redistribution.
- Improve overall management of natural resources, including forests, water, fisheries, etc., by involving all stakeholders in planning for sustainable development.
These land reforms are strongly regarded as an effective tool for poverty reduction and social reconstruction in India. This is also one of the most important policies implemented in India after Independence. This plan provides a path to recognize and consolidate the land rights of the poor and marginal farmers, especially in agricultural lands, which are being held illegally by powerful landholding interests.
The land reforms in India had been one of the most important and useful tools for poverty reduction. The main purpose of implementing land reforms was to increase the farmers’ agricultural productivity. A major step in implementing land reforms is identifying who will benefit from these reforms and which category of agricultural laborers will benefit from them. The main objective of implementing land reforms is to give land ownership to the people who work on that plot of land. The other objectives are reducing poverty and hunger, increasing agricultural production, improving the overall management of natural resources, and many more.