e-khataReal estate transactions can overwhelm a first time home buyer. The sheer volume of paperwork and the intricacies involved often make this a long drawn process.

An integral requirement to any real estate transaction is the khata. For a prospective home owner, or even an existing one, the khata is a familiar document. A recent development is that of the e-khata. There is a level of ambiguity surrounding this new term.

What is the e-khata?

Let’s begin with the khata – “In property jargon, Khata is the account of a property. It is primarily an assessment of a property that lies within the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) jurisdiction for the purpose of taxation. Khata records relevant details such as owners name, size, location, area, built up area, etc. It is essentially required to calculate the tax payable on the property, as well as identify the person who is liable for the payment of property tax,” explains Ganesh Vasudevan, CEO Indiaproperty.com. Once all governmental verification is complete on your property you receive your khata and a PID number. A khata that is filed online is known as the e-khata. The misconceptions surrounding the term however are plenty.

Misconception 1:

The e-khata is an additional/new requirement by the BBMP – FALSE.

The e-khata is merely the computerization of the khata and NOT a new requirement or procedure.

Understanding the e-khata:

The Karnataka Government, with an emphasis on Bangalore, has been in the process of computerizing land related records for almost 7 years now. Considering the expanse of Bangalore city, this is an effort that is immense and on-going, and will be so for many years to come.

A computerized version of a khata will contain all relevant details that have been recorded manually. Take a look at the benefits:

  • With a PID number which is assigned on computerization of records, the property tax payer will be able to access his khata account and make payments online.
  • He may also obtain receipts when needed, with the help of this PID number.
  • Updated khata certificate as well as extracts, may be easily obtained from the BBMP kiosks/ centres.

Misconception 2:

Every new property owner may apply for a khata online or pay taxes his way – FALSE.

The e-khata may be used by ONLY by those whose properties have been allotted a PID number. This is primarily for properties that were registered under the BMP and not the newer town municipal councils that were brought under the BBMP.

Why this is so: –

Up till 2007, Bangalore was governed by the Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BMP). This meant that most of what we consider old Bangalore – the CBD and the immediate surrounding areas came under its control.

Paperwork related to property was well maintained up until then. The process was organized and efficient. Since computerization of the process had begun by then, properties under the BMP were allotted their PID numbers and today, they are able to avail of e-khata services.

When Bangalore became a Metro:-

Post 2007, Bangalore attained the status of a Metropolitan city and BMP became Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP). In order to secure and maintain its status, Bangalore had to display a certain population level and land area under its coverage. The BBMP thus born and it began to include a number of surrounding areas to the city. A number of municipal corporations and satellite towns were brought under its control.

Why getting a khata under the BBMP is tough?

While development had begun in many of these areas, the paperwork was far from clear. It was soon realized that a number of khatas were issued without accurate processes being completed. The process of identifying such properties, putting them through the necessary requirements and sorting out paperwork is an on-going process.

Self-declaration of property was one route that began being opted for. Here people could come forward with information related to their properties and pay tax, bringing their accounts up to date. However, khatas are not issued to them till the necessary governmental verification and processes are complete. Such properties are listed in the manually maintained khata register. Such properties do not have a PID number and therefore will not be able to make use e-khata feature.

There are then several properties where taxes are being collected, however they are unable to be listed in the main municipal records (khata register) for want of proper documentation such as conversion orders, sanctioned plan approvals etc. These properties which have incomplete or improper documentation are listed in a temporary register (popularly known as B Register), awaiting further documents or approval. The certificate and extract from this register are known as B –Khata. Such properties also do not have a PID number and therefore will not be able to make use e-khata feature.

Summing up the benefits of the e-khata, Suresh Hari, Secretary, CREDAI, Bengaluru says that for those who possess a PID number, the khata is now a faster process and less cumbersome. A level of professionalism too has been brought into the process thanks to third party handling.

Just remember: The process of applying for a khata remains the same and only on receipt of an A-khata will you be issued a PID number. This in turn will make it simple for you to get online and pay your taxes as well as get updated copies of your documents when required.

Ramesh Kumar has extensive experience in real estate in a career spanning over a decade. With his critical expertise in sales and marketing, he has successfully launched and closed out projects across a complete spectrum of properties like plots, budget apartments, comfort homes as well as luxury villas.

Ramesh Kumar holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Management from Bombay University and is currently serving as the Deputy General Manager – Marketing & Sales at Vakil Housing.

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