Deputy Commissioner’s Role
The responsibility of General Administration of the District lies with the Deputy Commissioner. He is the Executive Head and has three fold roles as:-
- Deputy Commissioner
- District Collector
- District Magistrate
He is assisted by the following officers for carrying out day to day work in various fields:–
- Additional Deputy Commissioner
- Assistant Commissioner (General)
- Assistant Commissioner (Grievances)
- Executive Magistrate
- District Revenue Officer
- Regional Transport Officer
- District Development and Panchayat Officer
The Deputy Commissioner is the Chief Revenue Officer as District Collector and is responsible for collection of Revenue and other Govt. dues recoverable as arrears of Land Revenue. He deals with the Natural Calamities like draught, unseasonal rains, hailstorms, floods and fire etc.
Under the Registration Act the District Collector exercise the Powers of Registrar of the District and he controls and supervises the work of Registration of deeds. He also function as Marriage Officer under the Special Marriage Act, 1954. Further under the Cinematography Act, the District Magistrate is the Licensing Authority in his jurisdiction. The administration of the Police in a district is vested in the District Superintendent, but under the General direction of the District Magistrate as per provisions of section 4 of the Indian Police Act, 1861.
Rule 1.15 of the Punjab Police Rules, 1934, also provides the powers of District Magistrate as under:–
The District Magistrate is the head of the Criminal Administration of the District and the Police force is the instrument provided by Government to enable him to enforce his authority and fulfill his responsibility for the maintenance of Law & Order. The police force in a District is, therefore, placed by Law under the General control and direction of the District Magistrate, who is responsible that it carries out its duties in such a manner that effective protection is afforded to the public and against lawlessness and disorder.”
District Magistrate is thus responsible for the maintenance of Law & Order within the limit of his jurisdiction. He is conferred with very wide powers by the law, which if used prudently can be very effective in maintaining peace and tranquility. The police force is mainly an instrument provided by Law for the District Magistrate. He can impose restriction on the movement of unlawful Assembly under Section 144 Cr.P.C. and can also impose curfew keeping in view the situation.
He is authorized to inspect the Offices/Courts of Sub Divisional Officers (Civil), Tehsildars, Naib Tehsildars, Treasuries, Sub Treasuries, Jails, Hospitals, Dispensaries, Schools, Blocks, Police Stations, Second Class Local Bodies, Improvement Trusts and all other offices of Punjab Government, the A.C.Rs of whose Heads of offices he is required to write. In this way, he has effective control over the Administration.
The Deputy Commissioner holds courts and hears appeals under the following Acts against the order of Sub Divisional Officer (Civil), passed as Assistant Collector Ist Grade and Sales Commissioner and Settlement Commissioner:–
- Under the Land Revenue Act,1887
- Under the Punjab Tenancy Act,1887
- Displaced Persons (Compensation & Rehabilitation) Act,1954
- Punjab Package Deal Properties (Disposal) Act,1976
- Urban Land (Ceiling & Regulations) Act,1976
- Besides it, he decides the lambardari cases
Additional Deputy Commissioner
The post of Additional Deputy Commissioner has been created to assist the Deputy Commissioner in his day-to-day working. The Additional Deputy Commissioner enjoys the same powers as that of Deputy Commissioner under the rules.
Functions of Additional Deputy Commissioner
With a view to lighten the enormously increasing workload of the Deputy Commissioner, the post of Additional Deputy Commissioner was created in the year 1979. He has been vested with the following powers under the various Acts-within the limits of the district:-
As Collector under the following Acts:-
- The Punjab Land Revenue Act,1887
- The Punjab Occupancy Of Tenants(Vesting of Proprietary Rights)Act,1952
- The Punjab Tenancy Act,1887
- The Land Acquisition Act,1894
- The Punjab Restitution of Mortgage Land Act,1938
- The Punjab Village Common Land(Regulation) Act,1961
- The Indian Stamp Act,1899
- As Registrar under the Registration Act,1908
- As Deputy Commissioner Under the Punjab Aided School (Security of Services) Act,1969
- As Executive Magistrate, Addl. Deputy Commissioner, D.M under the Criminal Procedure Code,1973
- As Additional District Magistrate under the Arms Act of India and Petroleum Act,1934
- He has been appointed as Chairman of District Consultative Committee under Personal Accident Social Security Scheme vide Punjab Government Notification No 13/434/88-SW /9794 dated 27.9.1988
Sub Divisional Officers (Civil)
The duties of the Sub Divisional Officer (Civil) within his Sub Division are almost similar to those of the Deputy Commissioner within his district. In all matters of administration , he has to be the Deputy Commissioner’s principal agent.
He is also in charge of various development activities going on in the Sub Division and is also responsible for co-ordinating the work of various departments. For that he has to tour the area to keep a watch on the development activities, the revenue administration as also the law & Order situation in his Sub Division. Besides this he has to look after the grievances of the public and to attend to the problems arising out of the natural calamities. He supervises the work of Revenue agency in the Sub Division.
There is no denying the fact that the job of a Sub Divisional Officer (civil) is independent in character to some extent. He is primarily responsible for everything that happens within his jurisdiction and must accordingly take his decisions to a large extent, independently.
Sub Divisional Officer (civil) is conferred with various powers under the land revenue and tenancy acts.
He also acts as Assistant Collector under the Punjab Land Revenue Act and Punjab Tenancy Act. He is also the appellate authority in cases decided by his subordinate revenue officers.
The Executive Magistrate placed by the State Government as in charge of the Sub Division is termed as the Sub Divisional Magistrate Under section 20(4) Cr.p.c.and under section 23 Cr.P.C. the Sub divisional Officer like other Executive Magistrates of the District is subordinate to the District Magistrate and is responsible for the maintenance of law and order within the limits of his local jurisdiction. He enjoys very wide powers under section 107/151,109,110,133,144,and 145 Cr.P.C. etc. He also hears court cases under these sections.
Tehsildar/ Naib Tehsildar
Tehsildars are appointed by the Financial Commissioner, Revenue and Naib Tehsildar by the Commissioner of the Division. Their Duties within Tehsil /Sub Tehsil are almost similar and manifold (except that partition cases are decided by Tehsildar). They enjoy the powers of Executive Magistrate, Assistant Collector and Sub Registrar/Joint Sub Registrar. Although there has been a recent move to appoint full fledged Sub-registrar for some of the larger Tehsils. The Revenue Duties of Tehsildar are important. He is the Incharge of tehsil Revenue Agency and is responsible for proper preparation and maintenance of tehsil Revenue Record and Revenue Accounts. He is also responsible for recovery of government dues under the various Acts. He is supposed to have proper control over the working of Patwaris and Kanungos and for this purpose the Tehsildar and Naib Tehsildars make inspection of patwaris and kanungos working under them.
Tehsildars and Naib Tehsildar in fact are called Revenue officers holding separate circles and it is provided in para 242 of land Administration Manual that such allotted circle should be changed every year on October first, so that the responsibility of the Tehsildar for the whole of his charge may not be impaired. In Tehsil and Sub Tehsil, as and when Treasury Officers are not posted, then the tehsildar and Naib Tehsildar works as Treasury Officer in addition to their own duties. Tehsildar also registers the marriages solemnized.
Besides enjoying powers under a few other land laws, they also attest uncontested mutations. Tehsildar is further empowered to hear partition cases and to make allotment/transfer and auction of evacuee properties, land under the Displaced Person (Compensation & Rehabilitation) Act,1954 and Punjab Package Deal properties (Disposal Act 1976) as Managing Officer and Tehsildar Sales respectively .
The Kanungo establishment consists of field kanungo, office kanungo and the District Kanungos. Its strength in each district can only be altered with the sanction of the government.
The field Kanungo should be constantly moving about his circle supervising the work of patwari on the spot, except in the month of September when he stays at the tehsil to check the Jamabandis received from the patwaris. He also disposes of the demarcation applications marked to him by the Circle Revenue Officer. A field Kanungo is also responsible for the conduct and the work of the patwari under his charge and it is his duty to report the work or neglect of duty or misconduct on the part of any patwari.
The office Kanungo is the Tehsildar Revenue clerk and he is the custodian of all the record received from the patwari.
The District Kanungo is responsible for the efficiency of both the office and the field Kanungo and should be in camp inspecting their work for at least 15 days in each month from first October to 30th April. He is the keeper of all record received from kanungo patwari, at sadar office.
Patwari is an important and effective official of the lowest ebb in the Revenue Agency. No efficient Revenue Administration of a district is possible unless the patwari staff is strong, properly trained and strictly supervised.
A Patwari has three chief duties:-
- The maintenance of record of the crop grown at every harvest. The keeping of the record of rights uptodate by the punctual record of mutations. The account of preparation of statistical returns embodying the information derived from the harvest inspections, register of mutation and record of rights. The limits of “Patwar circle” is a matter for the Commissioner to decide under para 238 of Land Administration Manual.
- It is the responsibility of Patwari to report at once all serious calamities affecting the land or the crops and all severe outbreaks of diseases amongst men and beasts. He must aid the headman in revenue collection. He keeps up a diary and a work book. The entries should be made on the day on which the events come to the notice of the patwari.
- The Patwari is responsible for the safe custody of all the records, maps and equipments of his circle that are in his charge. In the work book the Patwari will enter the work done by him on each day. His work is supervised by the field Kanungo, Sadar Kanungo & Circle Revenue Officer.