REVIVAL OF DESERTED LAND
Deserted land here refers to un-owned land which does not have any buildings or farming.
Ruling 733: It is permissible to revive deserted land in order to take ownership of it, and by its revival the rules of ownership will apply to it, whether one revived it himself or by his appointed agent.
Ruling 734: Revival of the deserted land refers to any act which is conventionally seen as being building on it, such as making it a farm, a house, a shop, a storehouse, etc.
Ruling 735: Whoever takes ownership of land by its revival or by any other means, he also gains the right of its direct precincts, i.e. the area around the owned land which is required in order to properly benefit from the land, such as the path to it, a passing river, grazing land for animals, etc. It is not permissible for anybody to come and take ownership of the precinct of anybody else’s land, or to use it in a way that hinders the other from making use of it as required.
Ruling 736: The precinct of a well dug in revived land for the watering of camels and the like is twenty meters in all directions, and if it is for the irrigation of cultivation then its precinct is thirty meters. It is not permissible for a person to dig a well which will harm a pre-existing well.
Ruling 737: The precinct of a house is the path from its door, and its extent is approximately 2.5 meters, and it is recommended to regard it as being of approximately 3.5 meters.
Ruling 738: Just as one’s rights are established by revival of deserted land, they are also established by denying access to land one wishes to revive in the future, such as by marking the borders and laying the foundation, provided that the period does not exceed a usual timeframe. If he does exceed such a period, his right will be forfeited and another person may come to revive it.
Ruling 739: Some things are defined by the Sharia to be common for all to share, and they are the following:
(1) Those things which are declared as waqf, for any purposes; the limitation of the rights of people will be according to what has been decided in its waqf.
(2) Mosques and holy shrines, and the like; but whoever occupies a space in them, he has more right to it than others, although those who want to pray will have priority over others, especially congregational prayers.
(3) Markets – and what is meant by a market here is a large area of land used for the selling and buying of items, whereby it is not assigned for anyone or for any particular party. So, whoever occupies a place first has right over it.
(4) Roadways; in respect to roadways which have buildings on either side of them, everybody has a right over them, as long as passers-by are not troubled. As for those lanes surrounded by houses on three sides, only those who have a door facing the road have rights on the road, as long as passers-by who have similar rights are not troubled.
(5) Water of the seas, shores, rivers, and springs which flow by themselves, as well as brooks and marshes of deserted lands, are allowed for everybody; nobody is permitted to bar others from them. Private waters on land which is not concealed is permitted to be used by passers-by in a usual manner, without harming the water. If the land is concealed, it is not permissible for them to use it without the permission of the owner.
(6) Pastures in deserted land, which are not owned by anybody.
(7) Whatever is found in deserted land which is not owned by anybody, such as rocks, sand, mined objects, etc. As has been explained in the chapter of khums, it is obligatory to pay khums on what is found in mines.