Q: Ours is a non-political, non-profitable NGO formed before Independence. From 1942, we have been working from two rooms in a building in Calcutta. In 2000, one member allowed someone to set up a printing business in one room. Now, this man is refusing to vacate the room. How can we evict him?
Bijan Hazra, Calcutta
A: A declaration suit of title and recovery of possession may be filed before the civil court by the landowners. If the landowners can prove a better title to the property than the person who is occupying the room, they will be entitled to evict him on the ground that he is a trespasser.
Q:I am single and my parents are dead. I want to donate my belongings to certain institutions. How should I make my will? My uncle and I own a flat jointly, the mutation having been done in both our names. Also, I go out of the city frequently. I do not want my uncle to carry out any construction work in the flat in my absence. How do I ensure that?
A: You may make a will on plain paper in the presence of two witnesses. The will may or may not be registered. If the conveyance deed of the flat you own prohibits internal construction, your uncle cannot carry out unauthorised construction. If you still fear it, you need to sort it out with him.
Q:The original title deed of a property is lost. Certified copies are also not available from the registrarís office as the records have been completely mutilated. How can I prove my ownership of the property?
A: File an FIR with the police immediately. Also publish a notice in the newspaper regarding the loss of your deed. Write to the inspector general of registration, enclosing the documents for search, and also demanding an explanation for unavailability of records and its remedy. You may then file a civil suit before the court for declaration of title to your property enclosing all the aforementioned documents. Ensure that you provide factual accounts leading to the loss or destruction and other documentary evidences including previous deed, mutation, plan, etc. Witnesses such as the vendor of the property and officials from the registry office may be of help. It is also desirable that you declare that the property is not mortgaged or encumbered.