Maharashtra has become the first state to issue a crucial land ownership document online and accept a digital signature on it as valid. The state government’s plan of digitizing the 7/12 extract is thus complete. On Tuesday, it went a step ahead and generated eight lakh documents with space for digital signatures. The facility was inaugurated by the chief minister.
The 7/12 receipt is extensively used by farmers for loan agreements, crop survey and for availing of government facilities. Till a few years ago, hand-written 7/12 receipts were prepared by talathis, who solely had the power to make changes in the documents. This resulted in several instances of misuse of authority. While talathis, who are local level revenue staff, would be supposed to issue the document as a matter of assistance, in reality many of them would demand bribes.
In all, there are 2.46 crore 7/12 extracts across the state’s 43,000 villages. All have been digitized. “So far, eight lakh documents have been generated using digital signatures. The remaining will be completed by August,” said revenue minister Chandrakant Patil.