Urban Land Ceiling Act

                              Definition of Urban Land & Vacant Land
                              Ceiling Limit
                              Declaration of Property
                                Appeal & Revision
                              Exemptions from Act
                               Disposal of acquired vacant land
                              G.O.Ms.No. 455 Rev (U.C.I) Dept., Dt.29-07-2002
                              G.O.Ms.No. 456 Rev (U.C.I) Dept., Dt.29-07-2002


The Urban Land (Ceiling & Regulation) Act. 1976 came into force in the State of Andhra Pradesh on 17-2-1976 i.e., the day on which the Act received the assent of the President of India.

Objectives of the Act. : The Act is primarily intended to achieve the following objectives.

1. To prevent the concentration of Urban property in the hands of few persons and to arrest the speculation and profiteering in the urban property.

2. To bring about socialization of urban land in urban Agglomeration to subserve the common good by ensuring its equitable distribution.

3. To discourage construction of luxury housing leading to conspicuous consumption of scarce building materials and to ensure equitable distribution and utilisation of such materials.

4. To secure orderly urbanisation.

General scheme of the Act :

The Act is primarily intended for acquisition of vacant land situated in certain specified Urban areas called Urban Agglomerations. In the state of Andhra Pradesh the Act is made applicable to the following Urban areas called Urban Agglomeration.

1. Hyderabad Urban Agglomeration.

2. Visakhapatnam Urban Agglomeration.

3. Vijayawada Urban Agglomeration.

4. Guntur Urban Agglomeration.

5. Warangal Urban Agglomeration.


Urban Land :

This expression has been defined in Sec. 2(O) of the Act. According to which any land situated within the limits of an Urban Agglomeration and called as such in the Master plan is Urban Land. In case where there is no Master Plan or where such plan doesn't refer to any land as Urban Land, any Land within the limits of Urban Agglomeration and situated in any area included within local limits of a Municipality, a notified town area , a cantonment board or Panchyat etc. is Urban Land (Sec 2 (O)). What is not Urban Land :

The Urban Land doesn't include any land within the limits of Urban Agglomeration if it is mainly used for agricultural purpose (Sec. 2 (P)).

Vacant Land :

Vacant land means the land in Urban Agglomeration It does not include the land mainly used for agriculture purpose in Urban Agglomeration. Further if doesn't include.

1. The Land in U.A. on which construction of a building is not permissible.

2. The Land covered by any building construction before or on the appointed day with the approval of competent authority, including the land appurtenant to such building.

3. The land is occupies by any building constructed before or being constructed on the appointed day in an area where there are no building regulation, including the land appurtenant to such building.

4. If the land in a Village falling under U.A., the extents of land ordinarily used by any person for keeping his cattle, other than for the purpose of dairy farming or feeding of live stock.

(Sec. 2 (Q)).
Ceiling Limit :

In the case of every person ceiling limit will be 500 sq. Mts. where the vacant land is in U.A. falling in category "A" specified in schedule I. No U.A. in the State of A.P. come under category "A". 1000 sq. mts. in the case where the vacant land is in U.A. falling under category "B" as specified in schedule I. In the State of Andhra Pradesh only Hyderabad Urban Agglomeration come under Category "B" 1500 Sq.Mts. Where the Vacant land is in U.A. falling under Category "C". In the State of Andhra Pradesh, Visakhapatnam and Vijayawada Urban Agglomeration come under category "C". 2000 Sq. Mts. is the ceiling limit where the Vacant land is in Urban Agglomeration falling

within the category "D". In the State of Andhra Pradesh, Urban Agglomeration of Guntur and Warangal come under Category "D".

In case a person holds vacant land situated in two or more categories of U.A. the extent of vacant land held by him should be calculated according to the following equation.

1. 1 Sq. Mts. of Vacant land in "A" category U.A. = 2 Sq. Mts. of in "B" Category U.A. = 3 Sq. Mts. in "C" category U.A.=4 Sq. Mts. in "D" Category U.A.

2. 1 Sq. Mt. of Vacant land in "B" category U.A. = 1 1/2 Sq.Mts. in "C" Category U.A. = 2 Sq. Mts. in "D" Category; and

3. 1 Sq. Mt. of Vacant land in "C" Category U.A. = 1 1/3 Sq.Mts in Category "D" U.A. (Sec.4).

Declaration of Property:

Persons amenable to the Act :

A person, a family , a firm, a company or/an association or body of individuals are amenable to the Act. (Sec.2(i)). Therefore all such persons if holding vacant land in excess to the ceiling limit are required to file statements declaring the properties held (Sec.6(i)). Family in relation to a person means the individual, the wife or husband as the case may be of such individuals and their unmarried minor children (Sec. 2 (f)).

Filing of statement :

Every person holding Vacant land in excess of the Ceiling limit at the Commencement of the Act shall have to file statement declaring the properties held by him (Sec. 6(i)). In case of failure on the part of any person holding Vacant land in excess to the Ceiling limits competent Authority vested with the powers to direct such individual to file statement (Sec.6(2)).

Acquisition of Excess Vacant Land :

Every person holding Vacant land in excess to the ceiling limit is required to file statement declaring the properties held by him (Sec. 6(1)). On its basis, draft statement would be prepared and served on him to enable him to file objections if any (Sec.8(1)) and (8 (3)). Objection filed there of would have to be considered and disposed by a speaking order (Sec.8(4)). Final statement with alteration consequent on the decision of objection have to be prepared and served (Sec.9). This follows acquiring the excess vacant land by concerned State Govt. (Sec.10(i)) . All persons interested in such vacant land can file their claims at this stage and they are to be determined, followed by a declaration vesting the property to the state free from all encumbrances w.e.f. date specified in the declaration. (Sec.10(2)), and 10(3)). Sec.11 lays down the principles on which the amount payable for such acquisition. Where the vacant land so vested to Govt., the competent Authority by notice in writing require the person in possession of the vacant land to deliver possession there for (Sec. 10(5)). In case failure on the part of such person the competent Authority may take possession of the Vacant land or cause if to be given to State Govt. (Sec.10(6).

Appeal :

Any person aggrieved by and order made by the competent Authority under this Act not being an order u/s 11 or 30(1), may within 30 days from the date on which the order is communicated , to prefer an appeal before the appellate authority. In the State of Andhra Pradesh the present appellate authority is the Commissioner of Appeals to C.C.L.A., A.P. Hyd. (Sec.33)

Revision :

The Govt. of Andhra Pradesh is vested with the revisional power against any order passed or proceedings taken under the provisions of this Act, and against which no appeal is proffered. (Sec.34).

Exemptions from the Act. :

The persons or authorities exempted from the application of the Act. are mentioned in Sec. 19(1).

The competed Authority may exclude excess land from acquisition in certain cases where the concerned person under takes the build dwelling units for the accommodation of the weaker sections of the Society (Sec.21). During the year 1988, the Govt. have issued order granting general exemption to the lands to the extent of Ac. 5.00 cents situated in the peripheral area of U.A. vide G.O.Ms. 733 Rev. (UC(I)) Dept. Dt. 31-9-88 provided, possession of the excess land has not been taken over by 31-10-1998.

Power to exempt :

The Govt. of A.P. vested with the power to exempt any vacant surplus land from the provisions of the Act. for a specific purpose or under hard ship (Sec.20(1)(a)2(h)) subject to conditions. Incase of violation of conditions of the grant the Govt. is empowered to take back such exempted surplus land (Sec. 20(2)).

Disposal of acquired vacant land :

The State Govt. is vested with the wide powers of allotment in respect of surplus vacant land acquired under this Act to any person for/any business, trade, profession etc., on any terms and conditions and it may also retain or reserve any excess vacant land for the benefit of the people. (Sec. 23).

Right of first option :

The competent Authority is vested with the right of fist option to purchase the land, on behalf of the State Govt. at a price calculated in accordance with the provision of the L.A. Act. 1894 or any other corresponding law. Hence every person holding vacant land in the event of transfer has to issue notice to the competent authority u/s. 26(1) of the Act.

G.O.Ms.No. 455 Rev (U.C.I) Dept., Dt.29-07-2002

In View of the difficulties being encountered in the strict implementation of U.L.(C&R) Act. 1976 and in taking possession of the surplus lands vested to Govt. under the provisions of Sec. 10(3) of the Act, owing to protracted litigation pursued by the declarants, their successors and occupants, the govt. in principle have decided to allot the surplus lands to the occupants i.e. other than the declarants and their successors u/s 23 of the Act, subject to the following conditions and issued orders vide G.O. Ms 455 Rev. (u.c.i.) Dept. dt. 29.7.2002.

1. The allotment shall be considered where the excess land had already vested with the Govt. u/s10(3) of the Act, free from all encumbrances.

2. The allotment shall be subject to withdrawal of all litigations filed either by the occupants of excess land or excess land holders or any other interested persons pending before the courts or Authority relating to excess land as on the date of this G.O.

3. The excess land covered by litigation pending before any court or authority including land grabbing cases pending, if applied for allotment under these orders, shall be considered only after such cases are disposed of by the concerned authority or court and the govt. or other party deciding not to carry such order in further appeal or the govt. deciding to withdraw litigation in any case.

4. The allotment shall be subject to payment of amount to govt. at the rates specified separately for each agglomeration in schedule - I to this order.

5. allotment under these orders shall be confined to the excess land in possession of occupier (other than the excess land holder or his successors) where such possession is evidenced by a registered document of purchase from the excess land holder or a person claiming through him regardless of the facts of such land being covered by structure or not.

6. Excess land under the occupation covered by structure, though the occupation is not supported by Regd. document of purchase will be considered for allotment under this G.O.

7. In the cases of occupation supported by regd. document based on which the occupant claims to have come into possession, the year of such regd. document shall be taken into consideration for determination of the period of possession and then for calculating the amount payable as per the rates indicated in Schedule-I to this order.

8. In the cases of occupation covered by structure but not supported by any regd. document of purchase, the year of coming into possession shall be the earliest of the years with reference to the dates of any or all of the following documents pertaining to the structure for determination of the period of possession and to calculate the amount payable with reference to the rates indicated in Schedule-I to this order.

1. Electricity connection

2. Construction permission

3. Payment of property tax

4. Water supply connection

9. Allotment of vacant surplus land not covered by any regd. document of purchase shall not be considered under these orders and that the registered transaction of purchase of excess land that took place prior to date of this G.O. shall alone be considered for allotment under these order.

10. These orders shall apply only for allotment of surplus land occupied by 3rd parties i.e. other than land holder/declarant and his successors in interest.

11. Allotment shall be free of cost upto the limits indicated below in case the occupier there of is a person below poverty line.

a) If the excess land occupied falls in Municipal Corporation 67 sq.. Mts. (80 sq. yds.)

b) If the excess land occupied falls in Municipality 84 sq.mts (100 sq.yds.)

c) If the excess land occupied falls in Panchayat area 100 sq. Mts.(120 sq. yds.)

Amount shall be collected for the land over and above the free limits at the rates specified in Schedule-I when the total land in possession does not exceed 300 sq. Mts.

12. A person shall be considered to be one falling in the category of "below poverty line " if the aggregate income of such person is Rs. 12000/- per annum or below as on the date of this order. The income has to be declared by the occupier himself/herself in the form of affidavit as shown in Schedule-III to this order.

13. Every person occupying surplus land exceeding 300 Sq. Mts. will automatically regarded as a person falling above poverty line.

14. If the entire land is allotted free of cost to a person below poverty line, it shall be heritable but not alienable for a period of ten years. This restriction does not apply if the amount is paid for a portion or total extent of land occupied.

15. The amount payable in respect of the excess land applied for allotment as per the rates shown in Schedule-I shall be paid in lump sum by way of Demand Draft/Pay order / Bankers Cheque drawn in favour of the Special Officer & Competent Authority, Urban Land Ceiling of the concerned Urban Agglomeration.

16. The allotment of excess land made under these orders either on payment of amount or free of cost as the case may be does not require any registration under Indian Registration Act. 1908 and no stamp duty shall be payable under Indian Stamp Act. 1899.

17. The Govt. shall be competent to refuse or reject any case of allotments of excess land even though it other wise satisfies all the conditions prescribed.

G.O.Ms.No. 456 Rev (U.C.I) Dept., Dt.29-07-2002

In View of the difficulties being encountered in the implementation of U.L. (C&R) Act., 1976 and in taking possession of the surplus land vested to Govt. u/s 10(3) of the Act owning to protracted litigation pursued by the declarants, the Govt. in principle have decided that the excess land equal to 300% of the ceiling limit of the respective urban agglomeration whether falling in core area or peripheral one held by each of the excess land holder which has vested to Govt. u/s 10(3) of the act and free from all litigations shall be exempted u/s20(1)(a) of the act subject to payment of compensation to the Govt. for the excess land as per the rates specified in schedule-I to this order.


The Urban Land (Ceiling & Regulation) Act 1976