- Poor land records and a history of abusing eminent domain have blocked economic development and caused social unrest in India
- Many government initiatives to digitize land records have had mixed results
- Empowering ordinary citizens and reducing transaction costs are necessary to overcome these challenges
- States and citizens will continue to use technology to solve these problems, but there could be resistance at the national level
Over the past decade, land reform has emerged at the top of India’s political agenda. The poor quality of property records has proven a major obstacle to economic development. This issue is intertwined with the government’s overuse of eminent domain, which may have displaced as many as 50 million people in the last half of the 20th century.