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Uggar Sen Kashyap Vs. Union of India and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtDelhi High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Writ Appeal No. 1308 of 1970
Judge
Reported inAIR1972Delhi256; 9(1973)DLT59
ActsLand Acquisition Act, 1894 - Sections 6 and 9
AppellantUggar Sen Kashyap
RespondentUnion of India and ors.
Advocates: N.D. Bali,; D.K. Kapur and; J.R. Singh, Advs
Cases ReferredVelagapudi Kanaka Durga v. District Collector
Excerpt:
(i) property - acquisition - sections 4, 6 and 9 of land acquisition act, 1894 - petitioner challenged acquisition of his lands by respondents - notice under section 4 not vague or indefinite - notice extremely detailed and gave full description of area to be included within operation of notification - notice not void. (ii) proper authority - collector has no authority to change number of khasras included in notification under section 6 unless change brought to notice of delhi administration - petitioner land not within scope of notification under section 6 - held, petitioner's land cannot be acquired. (iii) service of notice - sections 9 and 10 of land acquisition act, 1894 - petitioner took part in proceedings and filed objections - only purpose of notices to inform person concerned to..........the petitioner is the bhumidar. on 13th november, 1959, a notification under section 4 of the land acquisition act, 1894, was issued, a copy of which is annexure 'a' to the writ petition. the petitioner filed objections under section 5a of the land acquisition act, 1894, which were heard on 26th september, 1962 thereafter, certain notifications under section 6 of the act were issued and later on notices under sections 9 and 10. thereafter two separate awards were made by the land acquisition collector which covered the petitioner's land.(2) part of the petitioner's land is covered by award no. 2179 which is annexure 'e' to the petition and the rest by award no. 7 of 1969. one of the contentions of the petitioner before me is that his land which has been acquired by these two awards.....
Judgment:

Dalip K. Kapur, J.

(1) This Writ Petition under Article 226 of the Constitution of India is concerned with the acquisition of certain land situated in village Shakurpur and also in village Mandawli Fazalpur, Delhi, of which the petitioner is the Bhumidar. On 13th November, 1959, a notification under Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, was issued, a copy of which is Annexure 'A' to the Writ Petition. The petitioner filed objections under Section 5A of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, which were heard on 26th September, 1962 Thereafter, certain notifications under Section 6 of the Act were issued and later on notices under Sections 9 and 10. Thereafter two separate awards were made by the Land Acquisition Collector which covered the petitioner's land.

(2) Part of the petitioner's land is covered by award No. 2179 which is Annexure 'E' to the Petition and the rest by award No. 7 of 1969. One of the contentions of the petitioner before me is that his land which has been acquired by these two awards included built-up areas which were not covered by the notification under Section 4. Another objection is that the petitioner was never served with notices under Sections 9 and 10 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 in respect of the land involved in the acquisition. The petitioner also urges that the notification under Section 4 dated 13th November, 1959 is void and illegal because it does not specify the location of the land involved in the acquisition.

(3) I shall first deal with the question whether the notification under Section 4 is void because it is vague. This notification covers a large area which is about 34070 acres. There is a detailed description at the end of the notification which divides the areas involved into blocks 'A' to 'T' and 'X' ; a detailed description of each block is set out and it is also stated that there is a map showing the exact area which is available for inspection I am unable to determine from reading these details that the notification is vague or indefinite. It is impossible to hold that the notification is vague, unless it can be shown that there is some doubt about whether a particular plot of land is excluded from it or included in it. As I am only concerned with the petitioner's case, I am unable to find that it is possible for the petitioner to contend that his land was not covered by this notification As a matter of fact, the petitioner has filed objections to the notification under Section 4 and. thereforee, could not have had any doubt regarding the applicability of the notification to the land in dispute. I, thereforee, come to the conclusion that this notification is not vague. Mr. Bali on behalf of the petitioner has cited Smt. Gunwant Kaur v Municipal Committee, Bhatinda, in support of the proposition that inparticular circumstances a notification can be vague. In that case, a portion of Khasra No. 2330 in Bhatinda, was acquired and the Court was unable to identify the portion of that Khasra which was covered by the notification. It was held by the Court :-

'The notification merely set out the areas intended to be acquired out of Khasra No. 2030 but the location of the areas under Khasra No. 2030 could not thereby be ascertained. No plans demarcating the land to be acquired were published or made available to the owners of the land. '

The Court then dealt with the particular facts of that case. In the present case the notification under Section 4 is extremely detailed and gives a full description of the area to be included within the operation of the notification. It is, thereforee, not possible to conclude that the notification is at all vague unless it can be shown that the petitioner was in any doubt as to the inclusion of his land within the scope of this notification. As he has filed objections and there are no facts showing any doubt, it is not possible to hold that the notification was vague.

(4) In the first paragraphs of the writ petition the petitioner has mentioned that he was a Bhumidar of certain specified land in village Mandawli Fazalpur. The Khasra Nos stated by him are 1294/928/512/1 and other numbers. An application was moved by the petitioner to amend the writ petition and one of the amendments sought was to change this number to 1254/928/512/1. The application for amendment was moved when the case was before me for final hearing. I find that the correct number of the Khasra is given subsequently in the Writ Petition particularly in paragraph 34 (C) (iv). And, thereforee, I have dealt with the Writ Petition as it is, on the assumption that the real number is as given in the aforementioned later paragraph.

(5) Regarding this particular Khasra No. 1254/928/512/1, the contention of the petitioner is that this land of which appears as Annexure D' to the Writ Petition. I have gone through the said notification under section 6 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 and I am satisfied that this Khasra number is not to be found therein. In the return to the Writ, the award No. 2179 is annexed as Annexure R-1. This award mentions in its body that Khasra No. 1254/928/512/2/1 has been partly acquired and the area involved is 2 Bighas and 2 Biswas. This land is not included within the ambit of the notification issued under section 6 of the Act. On this aspect of the case, the Land Acquisition Collector has stated in the award as follows :- 'It has come to the notice that some filed Nos. recorded in the notification under section 6 of the L. A. Act do not tally with Settlement Record. However, the main Khasra Nos. and the area involved are not affected as such. Hence there is no necessity of issuing any corrigendum to this effect. The correct Khasra Nos. have been accordingly included in the award as per the details given below :- Khasra Nos. wrongly stated in Correct Khasra Nos. proposed the notification under section to be acquired

6 of the L.A. Act 1222/992/153. 1255/992/153 1006/199 1006/199/1 to 1006/199/7 1228/201 1310/1228/201/2 1122/725 min & 1123/725 1122-23/725/2/ 1055/403 1055/473 985/146 985/147 986/146 986/147 498 min 1063 to 1065/498/2 497/min 1060 to 1062/497/2 1419/468 1420/468 1420/468 1421/468 1253/928/512 min 1254/928/512/2 min

Note:- The Khasra No. 1253/928/512 min has been entered in the notification under section 6 of the L. A. Act. But actually, by virtue of the mutation No. 1050 dated 17th June, 1960 the Khasra No. 1254/928/512/2/1 is being acquired under the present award.'

(6) This extract from the award shows that certain Khasra numbers included in the notification under section 6 were treated by the Land Acquisition Collector to have been wrongly mentioned and certain other numbers were substituted by him. There is a specific note concerning the petitioner's land but the meaning of the note has not been clarified at all. In my view the Land Acquisition Collector has no authority to change the number of the Khasras included in the notification under section 6 of the Act. The notification under section 6 depended on the satisfaction of the Chief Commissioner and is conclusive in view of the provisions of that section of the Land Acquisition Act. If the Land Acquisition Collector wanted these Khasra numbers to be changed, he should have brought the matter to the notice of the Delhi Administration, who might have issued a corrigendum. I, thereforee, come to the conclusion that the acquisition of this portion of the land without issuing any notification under section 6 is ultra virus and has to be struck down. On this aspect of the case which does not require any great elaboration, Mr. Bali on behalf of the petitioner has cited Subedar Samandar Singh v. State of Punjab. I fully agree with that judgment which is to the effect that it is not necessary to specify the Khasra numbers or owners of the land in a notification under section 6 of the Act. If the land Included in the notification under section 6 could be identified as being the petitioner's land, I would have held that it was covered, bat as the said notification contains several hundred Khasra numbers of land situated in village Mandawli Fazalpur and the petitioner's land is not specified, I must hold that the petitioner's land was not included within the scope of the notification under section 6 of the Act and. thereforee, could not have been the subject of the award No. 2179, merely by reason of the Land Acquisition Collector adopting a different Khasra number for his award

(7) I now turn to the contention of the petitioner that no notice under section 9 was served on him. On this aspect of the case the pstitioner has stated that award No 7 has been given without serving notices on him under sections 9 and 10 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894. It is however, plain that notices were in fact issued to the petitioner under both sections 9 and 10 and are annexures 'O' and 'P' to the Writ Petition. These notices show that they were served on one Nana. The report of the process server is that Uggar Sen could not be found on the spot and Deep Chand asked that the notices be served on one Nanu. Plainly, this cannot be taken to be service on the petitioner. Mr. Bali urges that this notice is even otherwise had because it does not specify what portion of the land is being acquired. However, the notices clearly state that they relate to the notifications in the Delhi Gazette, dated 17th May, 1966 and 18th March, 1966. Furthermore, the petitioner has stated that he did in fact come to know of the acquisition proceedings and had filed objections before the Collector. If the petitioner took part in the proceedings and did file objections, it is hardly material that the notices under sections 9 and 10 were not served on him. Though the provision regarding service is mandatory, before the award can be quashed, the petitioner must have some grievance. I am unable to find from the record that the mere non-service of the notices under sections 9 and 10 on the petitioner has in any way led to his legal rights being impaired. He has taken part in the proceedings before the Land Acquisition Collector and an award has been made. He is entitled to ask for a reference under section 18 of the Act to establish his claim to compensation. It would have been a completely different matter if the petitioner had not participated in the proceedings. That question is academic. The petitioner has cited The Land Acquisition Collector v. Smt. Parvati Devi, for the view that section 9 is mandatory. That may be so, but the question to be seen is, what is the effect of non-service of the notices in aparticular case. The petitioner has also relied on Velagapudi Kanaka Durga v. District Collector, Krishna District Chilakapudi. In that case, fifteen days' clear notice was not given. Although the petitioner in that case did take part in the proceedings before the Land Acquisition Collector, it was held that the entire proceedings were vitiated and the award was also invalid. I am unable to agree with that judgment. In my view, the only purpose of a notice under section 9 or 10 is to inform the persons concerned, that they should take part in the proceedings to be held by the Land Acquisition Collector under section 11 of the Act. If the person concerned does not receive the notice, but hears of the proceedings and takes part in the same, it hardly matters whether he has appeared before the Collector with or without service of any notice. The purpose of the notice is only to enable the person concerned to present his case before the Collector. If there is any short-coming or failure in this representation due to non-service of the notice, then the award may be invalid. If the party concerned does take part in the proceedings, then the Court will not exercise any discretion to strike down the award, linless it can be shown that some loss or harm has been caused to the petitioner due to non-service of the notice. I, thereforee, come to the conclusion that the award No. 7 of 1969 which is challenged in these proceedings merely on the ground of non-service of the notices under sections 9 and 10 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 cannot be invalidated on this ground. The petition fails on this part of the case.

(8) The petitioner has also raised some questions regarding the vagueness of the notice under section 6 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 on the ground that the Planned Development of Delhi is not a public purpose, it is also urged that the Delhi Development Act, 1957, came into force and provided a complete code for acquisition of land for the planned development of Delhi. Mr. Bali concedes that all these points have been decided against him by previous decisions of this court and he has only mentioned them for the purpose of being noted down.

(9) In view of my conclusions on the points urged before me, I come to the conclusion that this Writ Petition has to partly succeed with respect to the land of the petitioner included in the Award No. 2179 which is Khasra No. 1254/928/512/2)1 measuring 2 Bighas and 2 Biswas. Mr. Kapur on behalf of the respondents urges that this land has been utilised to build a road. I am unable to uphold the acquisition on this ground. The Land Acquisition Act requires a notification under Section 4 and a declaration under Section 6 of the Act. If a particular area is omitted from the notification under Section 6, it cannot be acquired unless the notification under that Section, can some how be read to include the land in dispute. As I am unable to do so, I must hold that the acquisition is invalid qua this portion of the petitioner's land.

(10) Mr. Bali on behalf of the petitioner has submitted that another portion of the petitioner's land which has been included in Award No. 7 of 1969 and is situated in village Shakurpur was also not mentioned in the relevant notification under Section 6 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 and has been wrongly acquired by the said Award. As this question has not been raised in this Writ Petition, I do not give any decision concerning this point, but leave the petitioner to institute another Writ Petition, if so advised, on this question. I am giving leave for the institution of such a Writ Petition because it is purely a question of law and dependent only on the contents of the notification under Section 6.

(11) Thus, this Petition partly succeeds. The parties are, however left to bear their own costs.


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