Security of land and the related matter of ‘guaranteed title of property’ have been contentious issues in India for several years. Scores of cases of disputed land ownership and poor collection of property taxes by municipal governments are only two of the damaging consequences of the inherently-flawed system of ‘assumed ownership’ which India has been following traditionally. Which is why, the Rajasthan Government’s recent move to pass the Rajasthan Urban Land (Certification of Titles) Bill (UCLT) needs to be hailed. For long, policymakers, subject matter experts, elected representatives and active citizens have demanded the passage of such a bill. One hopes that other states will follow the Rajasthan example sooner than later.

In this issue of Urban Canvas, our lead story is an article on this Bill, written by Swati Ramanathan, Co-Founder, Janaagraha. Swati elaborates on why this bill is important and what it could mean for the property rights of land owners of Rajasthan. This article first appeared in Mint, the newspaper.

In other stories, we feature important updates on MyCityMyBudget, our participatory budgeting campaign and on ASICS 2015, our survey of urban governance in 21 of India’s major cities.

Other regulars like ‘Stories from the Landscape’ and ‘Janaagraaha in the Media’ also find place in this issue.

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Happy reading!



Ganesh V
Head-Marketing Communication,
Janaagraha Centre for Citizenship and Democracy

Lead Story

 Vasundhara Raje wins the ‘title’ on reforms.

As Rajasthan ushers in the ‘Rajasthan Urban Land (Certification of Titles) Bill’, we witness a dramatic moment in the history of property rights reforms in the country. Swati Ramanathan, Co-Founder-Janaagraha, was closely involved in the efforts to get this bill passed. In this issue’s lead story, we feature a piece she has written about this landmark reform.

More updates

Stories from the Landscape

A selection of articles on one or more of these issues, culled from different publications across the world: urban governance, quality of life, civic participation and civic learning. 

Janaagraha in the Media

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