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Hemendra Prasad Baruah Vs. the Collector of Sibsagar, Assam - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtSupreme Court of India
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Appeal No. 1264 of 1969
Judge
Reported inAIR1976SC908; (1975)2SCC322; [1976]1SCR68; 1975(7)LC594(SC)
ActsAssam Land (Requisition and Acquisition) Act, 1948 - Sections 7(1), 7(1A); Land Acquisition Act, 1894
AppellantHemendra Prasad Baruah
RespondentThe Collector of Sibsagar, Assam
Appellant Advocate D. Mookherjee,; S.K. Nandy, Advs
Respondent Advocate M.H. Chowdhury, ; S.N. Chowdhury, Advs.
Prior historyAppeal by certificate from the Judgment and Order dated February 12, 1968 of the High Court of Assam & Nagaland at Gauhati in First Appeal No. 21 of 1963
Excerpt:
.....had no option but to determine the question of identity of judgment-debtor because of direction of high court in first revision whereby executing court was directed to conduct inquiry in regard to status of objector to execution proceedings and issues raised before it. direction by high court in first revision was keeping in view the provisions of section 47. section 47 contemplates that all questions arising between parties to suit in which decree was passed has to be determined by court executing decree and not by a separate suit. in the peculiarity of instant case, aforesaid issue could be adjudicated under section 47, notwithstanding that objector was not a party in suit wherein decree in question was passed. moreover, it is evident from order of executing court that no plea..........scale of compensation prescribed under section 7(1a) or the larger one stipulated under section 7(1) is attracted to the situation. the simple statutory test that settles the issue is to find out whether the land acquired is lying fallow or uncultivated. if it is, a small compensation alone is awardable, as laid down in section 7(1a) of the act. on the other hand, if it is tea garden, the quantum is as under clause 23 of the land acquisition act, 1894. this decisive factor lends itself to easy decision, because a plethora of evidence, to most of which the appellant is a party, proceeds on the basis that the land in question is fallow. the high court has collected and considered the prior statements and other materials leading to the reasonable holding that section 7(1a) appropriately.....
Judgment:

V.R. Krishna Iyer, J.

1. The concurrent conclusions of fact reached by both the courts below regarding the quantum of compensation payable to the appellant on the acquisition of his land for a public purpose by the State are assailed by Shri D. Mukherjee before us on the ground that the amount is grossly inadequate. Having heard him in the light of the High Court's reasonings, we are persuaded to affirm the finding.

2. 100 bighas of land belonging to the appellant (a Tea Planter) were first requisitioned by Government to settle landless people and the owner 'gladly' agreed to surrender the area which, on his own showing, was lying unused. Later, the State proceeded to acquire the land under Section 7(A) of the Assam Land (Requisition and Acquisition) Act, 1948 (Assam Act XXV of 1948). The sole dispute turns on whether the lesser scale of compensation prescribed under Section 7(1A) or the larger one stipulated under Section 7(1) is attracted to the situation. The simple statutory test that settles the issue is to find out whether the land acquired is lying fallow or uncultivated. If it is, a small compensation alone is awardable, as laid down in Section 7(1A) of the Act. On the other hand, if it is tea garden, the quantum is as under Clause 23 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894. This decisive factor lends itself to easy decision, because a plethora of evidence, to most of which the appellant is a party, proceeds on the basis that the land in question is fallow. The High Court has collected and considered the prior statements and other materials leading to the reasonable holding that Section 7(1A) appropriately applied to this case. It follows that the appeal has no merit and deserves to be dismissed.

3. We order both parties to bear their respective costs. Subject to this direction, the appeal is dismissed.


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