Indian Air ForceIndian NavyPolicy & Govt

How Much Land do India’s Defence Forces own? Three-year Survey Gets the Answer

By News 18

How much land do India’s Defence Forces own? In a first in 75 years, a three-year extensive digital survey, aided by drones and satellites and GPS, is giving us an accurate answer.

The Directorate General of Defence Estates has recorded 17.99 lakh acres as belonging to the Ministry of Defence. Of these, 17.78 lakh acres have been mapped in the ongoing survey. Interestingly, only 1.61 lakh acres of land is located inside the 62 notified cantonments. The remaining (16.38 lakh acres) is spread across 4900 pockets across India, including in inhospitable terrains. Land outside cantonments house various defence establishments, field firing ranges and training areas.

The Government of India is the largest landholder in the country and owns land nine times the size of Delhi. Within the government, the Ministry of Railways has the largest amount of real estate followed by the Ministry of Defence.

News 18

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