Avadh Behari Rohatgi, J.
(1) The appellants' land in village Naraina was acquired by the Government. Notification under section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act (the Act) was issued on September, 3, 1957. In due course the Land Acquisition Collector made his award (Award No. 1713 dated October 30, 1963.) The Collector divided the land in two blocks. For lands in block A he made an offer of Rs. 2250.00 per bigha. For lands in block B he offered Rs.l500.00 perbigha.
(2) On a reference under section 18 of the Act the Additional District Judge raised the compensation to Rs. 4000.00 per bigha. The appellants' land was classified in block A. The judge thereforee awarded them Rs. 40CO.00 per bigha. Now there is an appeal for further enhancement.
(3) Counsel for the appallants has mainly relied on two factors. In the first place he relies on a sale deed executed on December 19, 1957 in respect of khasra No. 116 by which land was sold at the rate of Rs. 5000.00 per bigha. This instance was cited in evidence before the judge. He did not accept this sale on the ground that the land which was the subject of the sale deed was 'much nearer to the Ring Road and Mansrover Colony'. He thereforee thought that Rs. 5000.00 per bigha as evidenced by this sale deed could not be awarded for the appellants land. He followed the judgment of his predecessor who had awarded R. 40CO.00 per bigha in respect of the acquired lands under this very award. In view of that judgment he awarded to the appellants Rs. 4000.00 per bigha.
(4) Counsel for the appellants says that there is no good reason or not accepting the sale deed dated December 19. 1957. On the other hand counsel for the Union of India submits that in a decision of this court in R.F.A. 178-D of 1962 (Ram Saran v. Union of India) decided on March 20, 1974 the division bench (S.N. Andley C.J. and Y. Dayal J) awarded Rs. 4.50 per square yard for the land in respect of which notification under section 4 was issued on July 29, 1958. The division bench referred to a transaction of sale dated August 8, 1857. This sale was in respect of an area of 1.14 bighas out of field No. 1152 and the sale price was Rs. 6667.00 . This works out to Rs. 3.90 per square yard. The area comprised in the sale deed was at a distance of 3 furlongs from village Naraina and on the same side of the road as village Naraina.
(5) Counsel for the Union of India submits that if the division bench was not prepared to award more than Rs. 4.50 per square yard for the land in respect of which notification was made nearly ten months after the present notification then there is no justification for awarding Rs. 5.00 per square yard to the appellants as is the claim.
(6) Counsel for the appellants in reply submits that though it is true that in July 1958 the division berich awarded Rs. 4.50 per square yard the appellants' land is much superior to the land before the division bench. He has in the main argued that the appellants' land is in close proximity of the adjoining colonies like Rajouri Garden, Subhash Nagar and Mansrover Garden and for that reason Rs. 5.00 would be just compensation.
(7) From the judgment of the division bench it appears that the main consideration which weighed with them was that the land in dispute before them was also situated near the residential colonies like Mansrover Garden, Subhash Nagar, Rajouri Garden, Ramesh Nagar and village Naraina. This is what they said :
'ACCORDING to the Additional District Judge the lands covered by all these three sale deeds were acquired for residential purposes. The Additional District Judge then goes on to observe that it has not been shown that say building activity was in evidence near the acquired land in 1958 when the notification in question in the present case was made. In this conclusion, it appears to us, the Additional District Judge is clearly in error because the plans filed clearly show several residential colonies like Mansrover Garden, Subbash Nagar, Rajouri Garden and Ramesh Nagar in addition to the abadi in village Naraina itself in 1958. All these place? are within a distance of a few hundred yards and not more than a miie from the acquired land. It is not thereforee correct to say that there was no building activity in evidence near the acquired land at the time of the notification in question.'
(8) The judges of the division bench were not oblivious to the advantage that the land enjoyed in the case before them. They said two things. Firstly there was evidence of building activity near the acquired land in question before them. Secondly, disagreeing with the Additional District Judge, they pointed out that the land before them was situated at a distance of not more than one mile from the colonies. Taking these two factors into account they increased the compensation from Rs. 4.00 tors. 4.50 for the land in respect of which notification was issued on July 29, 1958 that is, ten months after the present notification. To us it appears that this judgment of the division bench ought to be accepted as a guide. I should follow it. If in 1958 the selling price is taken to be Rs. 4.50 per square yard I am not prepared to say that the Additional District Judge was wrong in estimating the market value for the appellants land on September 3, 1957 at Rs. 4.00 per square yard. As many as three Additional District Judges in different cases of this award which came before them renched the same conclusion. The judgment of the division bench lends support to their view. The weight of judicial opinion thereforee is that in September 1957 the market value of the land in this locality was not more that Rs. 4.00 per square yard as is evidenced by the sale deed dated Aug. 8, 1957. The sale deed dated December 19, 1957 is not an opposite illustration on which to found an opinion because there the land occupied a more advantageous position than the appellants land.
(9) For these reasons the compensation awarded by the Additional District Judge in this case is just and fair. I endorse his view. The appeal is thereforee dismissed. The parties are left to bear their .own costs.