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Certificates ......

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  • In day-to-day life we need several official certificates to prove date of birth, or place of residence, or caste, or income or legal heir status.

  • For instance, proof of date of birth and age is needed at the time of admission to school or employment. Similarly, proof of age is needed to obtain passport or driving license or airline concessions for the elderly.

  • Caste certificate is needed for those availing the facility of reservation in college admissions and government or public sector employment, or scholarships.

  • Income certificate is necessary to obtain concessions in tuition fee, or to apply for scholarships. Similarly government subsidies, ration cards for the poor and free health care can be obtained only by showing proof of low income.

  • Proof of residence is compulsory in Andhra Pradesh for admission to colleges and universities, including professional colleges. Government employment at certain levels (Groups II, III, and IV) is based on selection in a specified district or zone. Therefore residence certificate is necessary.

  • Legal heir certificate is necessary to receive family pension on death of a retired employee. Similarly preferential treatment for employment when an employee dies while in service is based on legal heir certificate. All government dues to a citizen will be paid to the heirs of a deceased citizen on the basis of legal heir certificate.

  • Most of these certificates are issued by the Mandal Revenue Officer (MRO) concerned. In Andhra Pradesh there are 1104 Mandals, for each of which there is an MRO. In rural areas, a Mandal usually consists of a population of 35,000 - 60,000 spread over 5 to 50 villages. In towns and cities, a whole town or part of a city may have one MRO. For instance, Hyderabad city area (Municipal Corporation) has 16 MROs.

  • In cities, towns and Major Panchayats (big villages notified as 'Major Panchayats') the birth and death certificates will be issued by the Corporation, Municipality or Panchayat concerned. In case of other villages, the certificate is issued by the MRO concerned.

  • Usually the person seeking a certificate will have to fill out an official application form prescribed for the purpose. These forms are enclosed in this booklet at the appropriate places. The text can be neatly typed on white sheets and used as an application form when necessary.

  • Usually a court fee stamp of Rs.2 must be affixed to the application form. These court fee stamps are sold by licensed stamp vendors stationed at the premises of Sub-Registrar's Office or Mandal Revenue Office.

  • Usually applicants belonging to Scheduled Castes (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST) need not affix the court fee stamp.

  • It is always desirable to apply for these applications well in advance, without waiting until the last day. Usually, the officials may need one or two weeks' time to verify and issue the certificates. Often hundreds of people apply at the same time before school or college admissions or competitive examinations. This will cause delays and sometimes the applicants may not get the certificates in time.

  • If the applicants take precautions to follow the procedure described in this booklet, and furnish all necessary information, they are likely to obtain the certificates without difficulty.

  • Late application, inadequate information, incomplete adherence to procedures, and incorrect information will increase the chances of demands for bribes.

  • If citizens have any problem, they may consult the local unit of Lok Satta for information and help. Lok Satta is a neighbourhood citizens' watch group to obtain better services from the government at every level on a day-to-day basis.

  • Certificates are often valuable documents. Care must be taken not to lose them or tamper with them. It will be useful to make sufficient number of photocopies and keep them in safe custody for use when needed. This will avoid the trouble of having to go to government offices often.

  • Often the rules prescribe that the applicants must obtain certificates from gazetted officers giving proof of residence or caste or income. This is a cumbersome requirement for most ordinary citizens, and must be removed. A Gazetted officer is an official of government above a certain rank. Almost all 'officers' are gazetted. For instance, all government doctors, engineers, veterinary officers, agricultural officers, senior headmasters of schools, principals of government colleges, MROs, Mandal Development Officers (MDOs) are all gazetted.

  • Obtaining a false certificate is a crime, and the person doing so can be prosecuted and sentenced. He or she will also lose the job or college seat. For instance, if someone obtains a false case certificate and gets a job reserved for that caste, he will lose the job.

  • The official giving false certificate is also accountable and will face punishment.

  • Apart from legal penalties, it is utterly shameful to obtain a benefit by producing a false certificate of caste or income or residence or date of birth. It is plain cheating and deprives a needy person of his or her legitimate rights and benefits. No self-respecting person should resort to such a practice.

  • If someone cheats society through false certificates, all of us in society lose. We should all stand up and oppose it together. By condoning such a crime out of apathy or laziness, we are contributing to misuse of our own tax money or helping an unworthy person get employment in government. Either way we, as citizens lose.

  • Most government employees would like to help us if we help ourselves. Please follow the procedure prescribed and insist on proper acknowledgement, queue system and an orderly system of processing applications.

  • Remember, if we want to cut corners, or jump the queue, others can do it too! Doing things the right way is not necessarily a losing battle.

  • If we assert collectively with knowledge, the government machinery will respond.

  • The following are the time limits fixed by the state government for some of the certificates and responses by GO Ms No.509 (Rev) LR - 17/6/97.

    Birth and death extracts 7 days
    Old Adangal extracts 7 days
    Attestation of current year's Adangal same day
    Mutation 30 days
    Handing over possession of lands 15 days
    House sites 60 days
    Eksal assignment (one year lease) 30 days

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