Karnataka’s land records software hacked for the third time

In a serious security breach of Karnataka’s famed land record database, 19 acres of government wasteland in the outskirts of Bengaluru, near Devanahalli was shifted to a private individual illegally last week.

In Gobbaragunte village of Devanahalli taluk, around 40 km from Bengaluru, land value is very high due to the presence of the Kempegowda International Airport. The incident has caused ripples in the revenue department. Land sharks are believed to be behind the manipulation of records.

The breach happened in the Bhoomi software. This is the third time that the Bhoomi software has been breached. Bhoomi, introduced to digitise land records, came into being in 2002. The first breach was reported in Mangaluru a decade ago when Bhoomi software was still in its nascent stage. A failed attempt was made by certain individuals to change the mutation of a government property to a private person. Two years ago, the department discovered another case where an attempt was made to change the RTC (Record of Rights, Tenancy and Crop Information) of a nine-acre government plot in Malur taluk of Kolar district to a private individual. The department had then filed a police complaint but the investigation did not progress. “The modus operandi of Malur and Devanahalli cases are similar. In both cases, the culprit has changed the RTC of government land to a private person by manipulating the database. This has been done bypassing the mutation process,” said a source at the Bhoomi Monitoring Cell.

It is learnt that an insider could be involved in the cases to help the land mafia grab unused government land. Due to the fact that modifications made can be tracked immediately, the department has been able to identify the changes made in the database. “We soon checked the history of land records and found out that the change was done manually,” the source said. In the Devanahalli case, the owner of government land was mentioned as Huchappa bin Nanjappa, someone non-existent.

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