1. The revision is directed against an order dated 15-10-81 of the XII Additional City Civil Judge, Bangalore City, in L.A.C.No.155 of 1981 pending on his file.
2. L.A.C.No.155 of 1981 is a reference made to the Court below under Section 30 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, as amended by the Karnataka Act 17 of 1961 (the 'Act').
3. During the pendency of that reference, this petitioner filed an application before the Court to permit it to come on record and participate in the reference. The learned Civil Judge has rejected that application by his order impugned here.
4. A few facts which are relevant may be stated in brief :
Some vacant land (fully described in the award LAC 47/78-79) forming part of Site No.29 within the limits of Bangalore City Corporation has been acquired by the Asst. Commissioner and Land Acquisition Officer, Bangalore Sub-Dn., Bangalore, for a public purpose, namely, for formation and extension of a road - 7th Cross Road from Coconut Avenue Road to Pipeline Main Road at Malleswaram, Bangalore City. He passed an award settling compensation for the property acquired. But he found there being a dispute as to persons to whom the same is payable. The dispute was raised by none other than the petitioner itself. In this connection what the Land Acquistion Officer states in his award may be noted :
'The Secretary Sri. Rama Mandira Trust has filed claim petition to the same property under acquisition by producing copy of lease deed. According to lease deed entered into between Kodi Anjaneyaswamy Temple represented by Special Tahsildar, for Muzrai Works, Corporation area and Sri Rama Mandira Trust represented by the Secretary it is for a period of 99 years. The plot of land measuring 3136 sq. yds. Further it is stated in the affidavit of the said trust vide No.D-5, PR 66/75-76 dated 4-8-1975 and an extent of 172' x 30' in property No.147 is being included in the acquisition proceedings for formation of link road.
Sri T. Muniswamappa, the notified Khatedar has produced General Power of Attorney made on 7-7-1980 between him and Sri.Venkataraju and the same has been registered as No.94/80-81 dated 9-7-1980 book No.234 Vol 8.
Under the circumstances explained above, I hold that the property is under dispute and order to deposit the entire amount of compensation in the Civil Court under Ss. 30 and 31 of the L.A.Act for adjudication.
5. After receiving the reference the Court appears to have issued notice only to Muniswamappa referred therein. Since the petitioner had not received any notice, I.A.No.I was filed on its behalf under Order 1, Rule 10 read with Section 151, C.P.C., requesting the Court to permit it to come on record as a party to the dispute.
6. According to the learned Civil Judge the reference made to him was a limited one; that he could not enlarge the scope of the enquiry; that the petitioner (applicant before him) was a stranger and that in the circumstances it had no right to an audience before him. In this connection, he also relies on three authorities, one of the three being a decision of this Court in Basalingappa Gowda V. Nagamma (AIR 1969 Mys 313).
7. It was argued by the learned counsel for the petitioner that the Land Acquisition Officer had made the reference under Section 30 at the instance of his client and therefore his client was entitled to be heard by the Court to which reference has been made. On the other hand, learned counsel appearing for the respondent supported the impugned order.
8. A reference under Section 30 of the Act is required to be made by the Land Acquisition Officer only if there were to arise before him any dispute as to the apportionment or payment of the compensation amount payable under the award. A dispute can be said to have arisen if there are rival claims for the amount payable under the award. In the instant case, the dispute was between this petitioner and the respondent, each claiming as being entitled to the whole of the compensation amount payable re : the property acquired. Since that is the dispute that is referred to the Court, the Court can adjudicate upon that dispute not by hearing one of the parties only but by hearing one of the parties only but by hearing all the parties to the dispute. Even without this application by the Trust, the Court was bound to issue notice to the Trust and had to hear that party in the matter. The decisions referred to by the learned Civil Judge in the impugned order are all distinguishable on facts. In Basalingappa Gowda's case : AIR1969Kant313 (supra) the person who had made the application to the Court in a reference pending for being brought on record was one who had not raised any dispute as to the payment of the amount under the award before the Land Acquisition Officer. In that context the learned single Judge has stated that the Court in a reference 'cannot implead a person, who never appeared before the Land Acquistion Officer and did not figure as a claimant before him, for the first time after reference under Section 30'. In similar terms are the observations in Manjur Ahmed V. Rajlakshmi Dassi : AIR1956Cal263 and also in Tejdhari V. Baul : AIR1981All47 . But, as already stated, in the instant case the Land Acquisition Officer had referred the matter under Section 30 to the Court only because a dispute had arisen in the matter of payment of compensation and that that dispute had arisen on this petitioner putting forward its claim also to the amount awarded as compensation.
9. For the reasons stated above, this revision has to be allowed. Hence, the petition is allowed. The impugned order of the Court below is set aside. I.A.No.1 filed by the Trust in the Court below is allowed. The Court below is directed to issue notice of hearing to the petitioner-Trust, permit it to come on record and will proceed with the enquiry in accordance with law.
10. Parties to bear their own costs.
11. Petition allowed.