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​​​​​​​The Settlement

Settlement means the process by which the Government determined the rates and account of land-revenue payable to it by the persons in whom it recognized a permanent right to occupy and till the land or arrange for its tillage. To assess the land-revenue is the primary object of settlement. It is necessary at the same time to determine who shall pay the sum assessed, or with whom the assessment shall be made. The person who is the actual proprietor, whether he has or has not under him some subordinate proprietors of one kind or another, is the person to whom, the Government deems to be as responsible for the land-revenue assessed on the estate. When there was more than one interested party, and it became a question, ?with whom shall the settlement be made??, or in the revenue parlance, who shall hold the settlement?? To permit an individual to contract to pay the land-revenue was usually an acknowledgement that he possessed the proprietary right in the soil

When it was determined that a given individual or body was ?to hold the settlement? and was the actual or principal proprietor, it became necessary to draw up lists (Khewats) showing the landowners in every estate, the extent of each man's right and the amount of revenue for which he was primarily responsible, and further, to protect the rights of a grade below, by making a complete record of all rights and liabilities connected with the land, even those of tenants from year to year

A settlement thus consists of :

  1. fixing the assessment
  2. framing the record of rights


The main feature of the settlement is to assess the Land-Revenue. The settlement system of Punjab started systematically in the British Regime and settlements were carried out in the Province of Punjab for the following purpose

  1. To proper field survey with the results embodies in a map and field register
  2. A full inquiry into the right and liabilities of all persons having interest in the soil, and the record of these rights and liabilities in permanent registers
  3. A moderate assessment based on general considerations rather than an attempt to deduce the demand from an exact calculation of the landlords net assets and the share thereof claim able by Government​