By: HEMA D
First thing first. Non-Himachalis, cannot buy land in Himachal. Sorry friends, who thought or were very happy that the Himachal government recently, opened up land in the state to outsiders, would be for a rude shock that the government hasn’t. But, there is still hope as you can buy a flat. But, I repeat, not land.
There was too much of confusion and debate around this topic. So Him Vani thought of getting the air cleared. And so we went ahead and talked to Mr Tara Chand Thakur, Administrative Officer, Himachal Urban Development Authority (HIMUDA) and got the following details:
So first thing first. Why was the world going hung-ho about this all?
- Land has been opened up only for one, industries and two for private builders, and that too only in selected areas in Himachal. And that too, the land would not be in an individual’s name but in the company’s name, only after strict environmental norms and other regulations. In Himachal, the government is giving special consideration for alloting land in areas like Baddi, Parwanoo, Nalagarh and Barotiwala in Solan district; Kala Amb and Paonta Sahib in Sirmour district; Amb and Gagret in district Una; Sansarpur Terrace in district Kangra, for setting up industries, tourism projects and hydel projects (most of them at self identified spots of the companies). So the matter rests here.
- However, there is no “known” upper or lower limt restriction as such set by the government for buying land for the puposes mentioned above.
- But you still have some hope. If you are a non-Himachali, you can buy (mind you) a flat by applying to Himachal Urban Development Authority (HIMUDA). But according to their norms, one family can buy only one flat. (e.g. A husband and wife will be alloted only one flat.)
Now let’s get into a bit of history and know more about the rules and regulations.
- Before the year 1966, there was no bar on non-Himachalis for buying land in Himachal Pradesh. At that time, there was less money in circulation in the economy of Himachal Pradesh. The two basic source of income at that time were government jobs or agriculture and most of the land was being purchased by outsiders. It was during the regime of the then Chief Minister Dr. Y.S. Parmar that ban on land sale to people from outside the state was implemented.
- According to the rules, all those (non-Himachalis) who have settled in Himachal before 1972, do not have to take permission from the government for buying land for residential purpose. But for commercial purposes, like hotel, industry or hydel projects, both non-Himachalis – those staying here before 1972 or thereafter can only get land after their case is approved by the cabinet.
- Every non-Himachali’s case for buying land in Himachal is sent to the cabinet for approval. So real tough to get through.
- In most of the cases it has been seen that the decision to allot land, totally depends upon the discretion of the government. In rare cases, like if a person is serving as a government employee in the state for long, is s/he allowed to buy land.
- Agricultural land can only be sold to a Himcahali agriculturist (strictly). So forget that. But considering the shortage of land in Shimla, there is a proposal for conversion of agricultural land on the outskirts of Shimla for commercial or housing purposes (but decision is still awaited).
For most of these proposals, non-Himachalis can either avail more information from the office of the Deputy Commissioner, Shimla or HIMUDA.