§ MR. REES (Montgomery Boroughs)
To ask the Secretary of State for India whether his attention has been called to the statement made in the Bengal Administration Report for 1905–6 to the effect that it has been decided to have a general revision of the records of Orissa done by a paid staff under the control of the settlement officer; whether he is aware that the settlement of Orissa was effected ten years ago for the ensuing thirty years; whether this revision of records is ordered in contemplation of an earlier revision of the existing settlement; and, if not, whether he will explain why it is proposed to subject tenants, landlords, and Government ryots to vexatious inquiries until the time arrives for undertaking a new settlement of this part of India.
(Answered by Mr. Secretary Morley.) For some years proposals have been under consideration for keeping up to date the record-of-rights prepared at great expense in the last resettlement of the temporary settled districts at Orissa. It has now been decided to provide for the continuous maintenance of the record by means of a permanent staff of revenue inspectors such as exists in other provinces. As a preliminary to this, it is proposed that the entries in the record-of-rights of each; village shall be corrected where necessary and brought up to date by a settlement officer and a suitable staff. The land revenue will not be revised and the term for which the assessments have been sanctioned will not be disturbed. A correct record of proprietary and tenancy rights has been found in Bengal and elsewhere to be beneficial to owners and occupiers of land. It is not anticipated that the revisional operations will be vexatious to the people. Similar operations have been carried out in other districts without such consequences.