Tuesday, 31 May 2011

What is Cadastral Surveying? and Why do we need it?

First of all lets define what is Cadastre? and What is surveying?
Cadastre is a data set containing information related to land ownership and rights. This usually takes the form of maps and descriptions of uniquely identifiable land parcels. For each parcel, legal information such as ownership, easements and mortgages are recorded.^

Surveying or land surveying is the technique and science of accurately determining the terrestrial or three-dimensional position of points and the distances and angles between them. These points are usually on the surface of the Earth, and they are often used to establish land maps and boundaries for ownership or governmental purposes. ^

So what is Cadastral Surveying?

Cadastral Survey is the means by which private and public land is defined, divided, traced, and recorded. The term derives from the French  a register of the survey of lands and is, in effect, the public record of the extent, value, and ownership of land for purposes of taxation. ^

So basically it mean is that Cadastre is the database and the tool that updates this database is Cadastral Surveying.

Why do we need Cadastral Surveying and a Cadastral System?
For Cadastral system to work, land law should be modified to the needs of Cadastral system. So when cadastral surveying originates from a law the reasons can be divided into several points.

  • We need it cause land is one of the most expensive asset of the Country it is the Cadastre is maintains the value, size and locations of it. Every piece of the the land should be accounted, even the lagoons, etc.
  • The system gives you guarantee that your property registry's (goathi registry) given sizes, position is also same in the real world. Meaning the dimension of the goathi is the same as dimension given in the goathi registry. I wonder how many of the Maldivian is facing this problem, my guess would be nearly all. 
  • The system allows your house to be mortgaged in a more systematic way allowing easier loans from banks. 
  • Once the system is made you will have enough data to produce accurate detailed maps of any where in the Maldives, which lack we lack so much. I meant is we will have maps showing road and houses accurately for almost all the island and from modern GPS you would be able to locate it. 
  • In a Cadastral System land Cadastre is maintained by the surveyors and the Surveyor General  is the incharge of land administration. Surveyor General is the head of Land Survey Authority which should be an independent body of the Constitution and is responsible for subdividing, registering and issuing of  new land property. 
  • Every inch of the land matters. 
  • Mostly it gives value to our land and many more
As my colleague, Firudous Hussain,  mentioned in his blog the importance of  Maldives Land and Survey Authority, i think it is a right step towards building Cadastral system in the Maldives. It has to be done soon and it has be done right. 

We should be confident that our actual goathi dimensions are the dimensions in goathi registry.  However all these changes come with lot of changes ranging from administrative to physiological. Also it costs alot of money to change, to establish new things system essential for the system. Some people might not like the change but as a country we want to develop we need to have a Cadastral system established and it should be sooner then later. 

As my profession is in this field it is a dream of mine that Maldives establish a Cadastral system with geodetic system in place. 

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