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Sri Hucheshwar L.S. Society, Kotekal Vs. the Land Acquisition Officer, Bagalkot Division, Bijapur and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtKarnataka High Court
Decided On
Case NumberWrit Petn. No. 125 of 1969
Judge
Reported inAIR1973Kant44; AIR1973Mys44; (1972)2MysLJ417
ActsLand Acquisition Act, 1894 - Sections 4 and 5A(2)
AppellantSri Hucheshwar L.S. Society, Kotekal
RespondentThe Land Acquisition Officer, Bagalkot Division, Bijapur and anr.
Appellant AdvocateU.L. Narayana Rao and ;K. Balakrishna Rao, Advs.
Respondent AdvocateH.N. Narayan, High Court Govt. Pleader
DispositionPetition dismissed
Excerpt:
.....use and consume the light energy created by it artificially for the purpose of carrying their data/information and it has been collecting from them an ascertained sum of money towards the same. - sub-section (2) of section 5-a of the act on which strong reliance is placed reads as follows: it is doubtless, envisages that an objector to the proposed acquisition should be heard before any report is submitted to the government and the fact of having submitted such report should also be communicated to him, and this court on more than one occasion has pointed that the provisions of that sub-section are mandatory and should be strictly complied with and that any failure to observe this norm would vitiate the final notification issued pursuant thereto. even if we assume that the petitioner..........under section 3(c) of the act to perform the functions of the deputy commissioner, and that the report submitted by the deputy commissioner to the government was not communicated to the petitioner as required by sub-section (2) of section 5-a of the act.2. before dealing with the contention advanced by the learned counsel, we may advert to a few relevant facts which are not in dispute: the land proposed to be acquired under the aforementioned preliminary and final notifications, is 3 acres 21 guntas and 12 1/2 as out of survey no. 1 of kotikal village in badami taluk the total extent of which is 8 acres and 19 guntas and which is said to belong to one gopalappa shivanappa desai of kotikal. the preliminary notification under section 4 was issued on 6/8-7-1966 and published in the.....
Judgment:

Range Gowda, J.

1. What has been challenged in this writ petition is the final notification No. RD 32 LHD 66 dated 13-9-1967 issued under Section 6 of the Land Acquisition Act. 1894 (Central Act I of 1894) as amended by Mysore Act No. 17 of 1961 (hereinafter referred to as the Act) and published in the Mysore Gazette on 26-10-1967, and the ground on which its validity is impugned 15 that the mandatory provisions of Section 5-A(2) of the Act have not been complied with. Though the prayer made by the petitioner is three-fold namely to quash (i) the preliminary notification issued under Section 4 of the Act vide Annexure A, (ii) the final notification issued under Section 6 vide Annexure B, and (iii) the Award passed under Section 11 vide Annexure C. the learned counsel appearing for him restricted it only to the second prayer i.e., to quash the final notification. The grievance made in that behalf is that the petitioner being a person interested in the land proposed to be acquired was not heard by the Assistant Commissioner of Bagalkot who was specially appointed under Section 3(c) of the Act to perform the functions of the Deputy Commissioner, and that the report submitted by the Deputy Commissioner to the Government was not communicated to the petitioner as required by Sub-section (2) of Section 5-A of the Act.

2. Before dealing with the contention advanced by the learned counsel, we may advert to a few relevant facts which are not in dispute: The land proposed to be acquired under the aforementioned preliminary and final notifications, is 3 acres 21 guntas and 12 1/2 As out of survey No. 1 of Kotikal village in Badami Taluk the total extent of which is 8 acres and 19 guntas and which is said to belong to one Gopalappa Shivanappa Desai of Kotikal. The preliminary notification under Section 4 was issued on 6/8-7-1966 and published in the Mysore Gazette on 21-7-1966 and the persons interested in the said land were required to prefer their objections if any within forty five days from the date of the publication of the said notification in the Gazette. The petitioner who claims to have entered into an agreement of sale on 24-8-1956 with the owner Gopalappa Shivanappa Desai of Kotikal for the purpose of purchasing one acre out of the land proposed to be acquired, filed his objections on 14-9-1966 vide Annexure B before the Land Acquisition Officer opposing the proposed acquisition. His case is that he had agreed to purchase the said one acre of land for a sum of Rs. 1,000/- and on the date of the agreement of sale itself he had paid Rs. 200/- as earnest money.

3. It appears to us that the Land Acquisition Officer later submitted the report to the State Government recommending the acquisition of the said land and pursuant to the same the impugned final notification was issued, and thereafter the Land Acquisition Officer passed an Award under Section 11 of the Act on 23-10-1968 vide Annexure C.

4. It is the case of the petitioner, as can be gathered from the averments made In the affidavit filed by him, that till about fifteen days prior to the filing of the writ petition (which he filed on 6-1-1969) he was not aware of anything about the report submitted by the Land Acquisition Officer to the Government and the final notification issued pursuant thereto and the award passed thereafter, and that it was only when the authorities concerned came to take possession of the acquired land he came to know of the same. The State has not filed any counter-affidavit. However, the connected records are placed before us.

5. As already stated, the principal contention advanced by Mr. U. L. Narayana Rao appearing for the petitioner is, that the mandatory provisions of Section 5-A(2) of the Act have not been complied with in that the petitioner, after he filed his objections, was not heard or given any opportunity to substantiate those objections, that the report submitted by the Land Acquisition Officer to the Government as required by that Section was also not communicated to him and that hence the final notification as also the Award stand vitiated. The argument submitted in support of his contention is, that the petitioner who had agreed to purchase one acre of land out of the land proposed to be acquired was undoubtedly 'a person Interested' in the land as defined in Section 3(b) of the Act and within the meaning on that expression occurring in Sub-section (3) of Section 5-A, and that therefore he was entitled to be heard after he filed his objections before any report was sent to the Government, as also to be informed about the submission at the report to the Government.

Sub-section (2) of Section 5-A of the Act on which strong reliance is placed reads as follows:--

'(2) Every objection under Sub-section (1) shall be made to the Deputy Commissioner in writing setting out the grounds thereof and the Deputy Commissioner shall give the objector an opportunity of being heard either in person or by pleader and shall after hearing all such objections and after making such further inquiry if any as he thinks necessary, submit the case for the decision of the appropriate Government before the expiry of six weeks from the last date for filing objections or before the expiry of two weeks from the date on which he receives the report under Sub-section (4) of Section 4 whichever is later together with the record of the proceedings held by him and a report containing his recommendations on the objections, and the fact of having submitted the report shall be communicated to the objectors......'

6. That sub-section. It is doubtless, envisages that an objector to the proposed acquisition should be heard before any report is submitted to the Government and the fact of having submitted such report should also be communicated to him, and this court on more than one occasion has pointed that the provisions of that sub-section are mandatory and should be strictly complied with and that any failure to observe this norm would vitiate the final notification issued pursuant thereto. But the question is whether in the present case there is any breach of the conditions of that sub-section which would render the impugned final notification wholly invalid.

7. It Is manifest from the language of Sub-section (1) of Section 5-A of the Act that a person interested in any land proposed to be acquired must file his objections on or before the date specified in the notification issued under Sub-section (1) of Section 4 of the Act, and in our opinion, it is only such person who can be regarded as an objector to the proposed acquisition and entitled to be heard before any report is submitted to the Government and also thereafter to be communicated about the fact of the report having been submitted to the Government. A person not filing objections within the said time cannot, in the eye of law be regarded as an objector, and the Land Acquisition Officer in such a situation is not bound to entertain the belated objections filed thereafter or to hear the person filing them nor is he bound to communicate him of the fact of his having submitted the report to the Government as required by Section 5-A(2) of the Act. To hold otherwise, is to read into that section what is not warranted by its own language.

If in every case objections filed after the period specified in the preliminary notification are to be entertained and the person filing such belated objections is to be heard and also to be communicated of the fact of any report having submitted to the Government, such a course is in our opinion, likely to produce unjust and alarming results and would de-feat any finality being reached within reasonable time in such matters. It is to obviate or combat such results, Sub-section (1) of Section 5A is enacted in such precise language requiring the person interested in the land proposed to be acquired to file Ms objections if any within the time specified in the preliminary notification. Otherwise, the authority concerned will have to re-do the report submitted to the Government if objections filed thereafter are required to be considered as also the person filing them is to be heard.

We do not think the law is so illogical and Sub-section (1) or (2) of Section 5-A contemplate it. The objector referred to in Sub-section (2) of Section 5A is the person who filed his objections within the time specified in the preliminary notification, and it is that person if he is interested in the land who is entitled to be heard and also to be communicated about the fact of the report having been sent to the Government. If the person claiming those rights under that sub-section has not filed any objections within the said time, he cannot, in our opinion, be regarded as an objector within the meaning of that expression occurring in that sub-section.

8. Now, in the present case, regard being had to the date on which the preliminary notification was published in the Gazette requiring all concerned to file objections if any against the proposed acquisition, it is evident that the petitioner filed his objections only on 14-9-1966 several days after the expiry of the stipulated period nO explanation is forthcoming as to why there was such delay in filing the objections, and the affidavit filed in support of the writ petition is totally silent regarding the same. It is also not averred in that affidavit whether or not the report was submitted to the Government by the Land Acquisition Officer when the objections were filed by the petitioner. In these circumstances, the petitioner cannot be regarded as an objector who was entitled to be heard and also to be communicated about the fact of the report having been submitted to the Government under Sub-section (2) of Section 5A.

In our view, therefore, the ground on which the final notification is sought to be assailed is not a legitimate ground flowing from the provisions of Section 5-A(2) of the Act. Even if we assume that the petitioner is a person interested in the land proposed to be acquired, since he cannot be regarded as an objector to the proposed acquisition, he cannot complain that the mandatory provisions of Section 5-A(2) of the Act were not complied with in the manner indicated above. In our opinion, no infirmity as is alleged by the petitioner attaches to the final notification so as to expose it to the risk of being quashed. In the view we take, we consider it wholly unnecessary to go into the question whether the petitioner who had agreed to purchase one acre out of the land proposed to be acquired, should be regarded as a person interested in the land as defined in Section 3(b) of the Act and within the meaning of that expression occurring in Section 5-A(2), though arguments were addressed at some length on this question.

9. In the result, for the reasons stated above, this Writ Petition fails and the same is dismissed. There will be no order as to costs.


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