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Mirza Nowsherwan Khan and anr. Vs. State of Andhra Pradesh and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtAndhra Pradesh High Court
Decided On
Case NumberWrit Petn. No. 579 of 1958
Judge
Reported inAIR1959AP444
ActsConstitution of India - Article 226; Land Acquisition Act, 1894 - Sections 4, 6 and 17(4); Hyderabad Land Acquisition Act, 1309F - Sections 3, 3(1), 5 and 12(3)
AppellantMirza Nowsherwan Khan and anr.
RespondentState of Andhra Pradesh and ors.
Appellant AdvocateS. Krishna, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateGovt. Pleader and ;N. Narasimha Ayyangar, Adv.
DispositionPetition dismissed
Excerpt:
property - land acquisition - article 226 of constitution of india, sections 4, 6 and 17 (4) of land acquisition act, 1894 and sections 3, 5 and 12 (3) of hyderabad land acquisition act, (9 of 1309-f) - government acquired land of petitioner for construction of income tax buildings by issuing notification - aggrieved by amount of compensation awarded in lieu of acquisition - petitioner asked collector to refer matter before civil court - petitioner adopting dilatory tactics by seeking more time every now and then in handing over possession - finally collector took possession ignoring plea of extension of time by petitioner - prayed for issue of writ of certiorari - court opined that petitioner never questioned validity of acquisition notification but only questioned compensation amount -..........to quash certain notifications and orders issued by the government of andhra pradesh and the land acquisition collector, hyderabad, under the hyderabad land acquisition act (no. ix of 1309 f.).2. the contention on behalf of the petitioners is that the notification under section 3 (1) of the. hyderabad land acquisition act, published by the government of andhra pradesh on january 3, 1957, is 'ultra vires' the powers of the government, and consequently all subsequent proceedings taker, under that act are null and void and must be quashed.3. much water has flowed under the bridged since the notification of 3-1-1957, and all that is necessary in this case is to set out the history of the acquisition proceedings and point out the stand, taken by the petitioners throughout those.....
Judgment:

Basi Reddi, J.

1. This is a petition under Article 226 of the Constitution for the issue of a Writ of Certiorari to quash certain notifications and orders issued by the Government of Andhra Pradesh and the Land Acquisition Collector, Hyderabad, under the Hyderabad Land Acquisition Act (No. IX of 1309 F.).

2. The contention on behalf of the petitioners is that the notification under Section 3 (1) of the. Hyderabad Land Acquisition Act, published by the Government of Andhra Pradesh on January 3, 1957, is 'ultra vires' the powers of the Government, and consequently all subsequent proceedings taker, under that Act are null and void and must be quashed.

3. Much water has flowed under the bridged since the notification of 3-1-1957, and all that is necessary in this case is to set out the history of the acquisition proceedings and point out the stand, taken by the petitioners throughout those proceedings, to show how untenable this petition is.

4. On 3-1-1957, the Government of Andhra Pradesh published the following notification in respect of certain land belonging to the petitioners :

'Whereas it appears to the Government of Andhra Pradesh that the land specified below is needed for a public purpose, to wit, for construction of a combined building for the Income-Tax and Central Excise Offices, notice to that effect is hereby given to all whom it may concern in accordance with the provisions of Sub-section (i) of Section 3 of the Hyderabad Land Acquisition Act 1309 F (Hyderabad Act 9 of 1309 F). And the Governor of Andhra Pradesh hereby authorises the Collector, Land Acquisition Hyderabad District, his staff, and workmen to exercise the powers conferred by sub-section (2) of Section 3 of the said Act. Under Sub-section (3) of Section 12 of the said Act, the Governor of Andhra Pradesh directs that, in view of the urgency of the case, the provisions of Section 4-A of the Act shall not apply to this case. Hyderabad District, Hyderabad City : Saifabad Ward : Open land and building and tenements belonging to Shri Mirza Nowsherwarr Khan and Shri Mirza Jamshed Khan -- 15644 sq. yards.'

On 10-1-1957, the Government published a declaration in the terms of Section 5 (1) of the Act to the effect that the land in question was required for a public purpose, namely, for the construction of a combined building for Income-tax and Central Excise Offices, and directed the Collector, Land Acquisition, Hyderabad District to proceed with the acquisition of the land.

5. Thereafter the Collector caused public notices to be given under Sections 7 and 8 of the Act inviting claims to compensation from all persons interested in the land. In response thereto, the petitioners put in a claim petition on 12-4-1957.

6. The Collector then made an elaborate enquiry at which the petitioners adduced oral and documentary evidence in support of their claim to compensation. Ultimately on 27-2-1958, the Collector made his award fixing the amount of compensation payable to the petitioners at Rs. 1,99,155. 85.

7. By an application dated 3-4-1958, the petitioners asked the Collector to refer the matter to the Civil Court as they were apparently not satisfied with the amount of compensation which had! been awarded.

8. Thereafter, when notices were served on the petitioners to surrender possession, they requested for one month's time by a petition dated 11-4-11958. By another petition presented a week later they asked for two month's time; and on that petition the Collector ordered that possession of the open land be taken immediately and handed over to the Income-tax Department while the built-up area might be taken possession of after one month. The Collector took possession of the vacant land on 18-4-1958 and in token thereof the petitioners affixed their signatures on the plan. Subsequently by a petition dated 15-5-1958 the petitioners again requested for three months' time for handing over possession of the building occupied by them, and again by another petition dated 26-6-1958 wanted! time upto the end of September 1958.

9. All through the pendency of these proceedings, the petitioners never questioned the validity of the notifications issued by the Government and the action taken by the Collector. On the contrary, they acquiesced in the acquisition proceedings; they submitted to the jurisdiction of the Collector by producing evidence in support of their claim to compensation; after die award was made, they asked the Collector to make a reference to the Court; and from time to time they were asking for more and more time to vacate the land. This course of conduct disentitles the petitioners to challenge the legality of the acquisition proceedings by invoking the special powers of the High Court under Article 226 of the Constitution.

10. Nor is there any substance in the points taken by the learned Advocate for the petitioners. Firstly it is contended that the purpose for which the land was acquired is not a 'public purpose' within the meaning of Section 3 and Section 5 of the Hyderabad Land Acquisition Act. In the present case the land was acquired for the purpose of constructing a combined building for Income-tax and Central Excise Offices; and the construction of a building for housing departments of Government, cannot but be regarded as a 'public purpose.'

11. The second point made by the learned Advocate is that the Government had acted illegally in including in the preliminary notification issued under Section 3 (1) of the Act, a direction under Section 12(3; that the provisions. of Section 4-A shall not apply. Section 4-A deals with the hearing of objections to the acquisition of the land before a declaration that the land is needed for a public purpose, is made under Section 5; and the learned Advocate contends that a direction under Section 12 (3) should follow a declaration under Section 5 and not precede it. To give effect to this contention would be to defeat the very object of Section 12 (3) which is intended to be used in cases of urgency. Sub-section (3) of Section 12 provides ;

'In the case of any land to which, in the opinion of the Government, the provisions of this section are applicable, the Government may direct that the provisions of Section 4-A shall not apply, and, if it does so direct, a declaration may be made under Section 5 in respect of the land at any time after the publication of the notification under Section 3, Sub-section (1).'

So that, there is nothing in the language of the sub-section which precludes the Government from giving a direction under Section 12 (3) simultaneously with the publication of a preliminary notification under Section 3(1). All that Sub-section (3) of Section 12 contemplates is that once the procedure under Section 4-A has been dispensed with, a declaration under Section 9 may be made at any time after the publication of the notification under Section 3 (1) of the Act.

12. In the result, this Writ Petition is dismissed with costs. Advocates' fee Rs. 100/-.


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