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Indian Cold Storage and Ice Factory and Etc. Etc. Vs. Land Acquisition Officer and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtRajasthan High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Special Appeal Nos. 236 to 258 and 283 to 288 of 1983
Judge
Reported inAIR1984Raj84; 1983()WLN387
ActsRajasthan Urban Improvement Act, 1959 - Sections 59A and 59A(1); Rajasthan Land Acquisition Act, 1953 - Sections 4(1)
AppellantIndian Cold Storage and Ice Factory and Etc. Etc.
RespondentLand Acquisition Officer and ors.
Appellant Advocate S.N. Sharma, Adv.
Respondent Advocate H.N. Calla, Govt. Adv. and; B.R. Arora, Adv.
DispositionAppeal dismissed
Cases ReferredIn Mangulal Chunilal v. Manilal Maganlal
Excerpt:
rajasthan land acquisition act, 1953 - section 17(4) and rajastean urban improvement act, 1959--section 59a-uit not in existence between 13-8-78 and 6-3-81--notification issued on 23-4-80--held, single judge was right in holding that proceedings were not initialed under section 59a and can be continued.;between aug. 13, 1978 and march 6, 1981, the urban improvement trust was not in existence.;notification ex. 4 dated april 23,1980 was issued under section 4(1) of the act of 1953. it cannot be said that the proceedings were initiated under section 59aofthe act. as no proceedings have been initiated at the instance of the trust for the purpose of improvement or any other purpose specified under the act, the learned single judge, in our opinion, was right in holding that the proceedings,..........the writ, petitions in part and held that the notification under section 17 (4) of the rajasthan land acquisition act (no. xxiv of 1953) (hereinafter referred to as 'the act of 1953') issued by the state government is bad in law and that the provisions of section 4(5) and section 5a of the act of 1953 have not been complied with fully. he, therefore, quashed the notification issued under section 17(4) of the act of 1953 and directed the parties to file objections, if they so choose, before the land acquisition officer, before june 20, 1983. the land acquisition officer was further directed to hear the parties on june 30, 1983 either in person or through their pleader or legal representatives and consider the objections submitted earlier as well as the objections which may be filed in.....
Judgment:

S.K. Mal Lodha, J.

1. These 29 appeals under Section 18 of the Rajasthan High Court Ordinance, are directed against the judgment dated May 6, 1983 of the learned single Judge, who allowed the writ, petitions in part and held that the Notification under Section 17 (4) of the Rajasthan Land Acquisition Act (No. XXIV of 1953) (hereinafter referred to as 'the Act of 1953') issued by the State Government is bad in law and that the provisions of Section 4(5) and Section 5A of the Act of 1953 have not been complied with fully. He, therefore, quashed the Notification issued under Section 17(4) of the Act of 1953 and directed the parties to file objections, if they so choose, before the Land Acquisition Officer, before June 20, 1983. The Land Acquisition Officer was further directed to hear the parties on June 30, 1983 either in person or through their pleader or legal representatives and consider the objections submitted earlier as well as the objections which may be filed in pursuance of the directions of this Court. The learned Judge was of the opinion that a fresh notice under Section 4 (5) of the Act of 1953 need not be issued. He, while allowing the writ petitions in part, held that the proceedings taken under the Act of 1953 were valid and could be continued as there is no violation of the provisions of Section 59 A of the Rajasthan Urban Improvement Act (No. XXXV of 1959) (for short 'the Act'). Hence these special appeals as aforesaid.

2. In all these appeals, the only point involved is whether the learned single Judge was right and justified in overruling the objections raised on behalf of the petitioners-appellants that the proceedings for acquisition taken under the Act of 1953 were valid and they can be continued despite the provisions of Section 59A of the Act. As the question involved is common in all the appeals, they were heard together and it will be convenient to dispose them of by a common judgment.

3. We may briefly notice the facts necessary for the disposal of the appeals.

4. The Administrator, Municipal Council, Sriganganagar, by his letter (Anx. R 1) dated Feb. 26, 1979, requested the Collector, Sriganganagar to move the Government for the acquisition of the lands mentioned therein. Another letter (Anx R 2) dated August 4, 1979 was addressed by the Administrator to the Director of Local Bodies, Jaipur for the acquisition of the aforesaid lands. The Collector, vide his letter Anx. R 3 dated August 29, 1979, requested the Director of Local Bodies to initiate acquisition proceedings and to issue a Notification under Section 4 of the Act of 1953. The State Government issued Notification Ex. 4 dated April 23, 1980 in exercise of the powers conferred under Section 4 (1) of the Act of 1953. This was published in the Rajasthan Rajpatra dated September 25, 1980. The Land Acquisition Officer started proceedings under Section 5 A of the Act of 1953. The objections were filed by the persons whose lands were sought to be acquired. The Land Acquisition Officer considered the objections and submitted his report to the State Government. He requested the State Government to issue Notification as required by Section 6 of the Act of 1953. The Land Acquisition Officer also requested for invoking Section 17(4) by his letter Anx. Rule 4. The Collector by his letter (Anx. Rule 5) intimated the State Government to issue Notification under Section 17(4) of the Act of 1953. Thereafter, a request was made by the Land Acquisition Offi-cer-cum-Sub-Divisional Officer, Sriganganagar, by his letter Ex. 2 dated Feb. 4, 1981 to dispense with the provisions of Section 5A and to issue the Notification under Section 17 (4) on March 11, 1981. The petitioners filed the writ petitions. Some of them have challenged Notification issued by the State Govt. under Section 4(1) and the proceedings taken thereafter. Others have challenged the Notification under Section 4(1) and subsequent proceedings as well as the Notification issued by the State Government under Section 17(4) read with Section 6 of the Act of 1953 on various grounds. Separate replies were filed on behalf of the State of Rajasthan and the Municipal Council, Sriganga nagar contesting the writ petitions on various grounds.

5. In the reply, the Municipal Council, Sriganganagar submitted that the Notification under Section 4(1) was issued after receiving the reports from the Chairman, Urban Improvement Trust, Sriganganagar, i.e. Collector, Sriganga-nagar in pursuance to the resolution of the Urban Improvement Trust that certain area of land including the land in question was urgently needed for solving the problem of fast growing population of Sriganganagar and that the same should be acquired. It was stated that the Urban Improvement Trust was dissolved by the Government and after that similar reports were made by the Municipal Council, Sriganganagar for acquiring the land to meet the need of grow-ing population of the city and on the basis of these reports made to the Gov-ernment from time to time, the Government considered it necessary and expedient to act under the provisions of Section 4 of the Act of 1953.

6. The State of Rajasthan in its reply while adopting the reply of the Municipal Council, averred that the Municipal Council, Sriganganagar, requested the State Government to acquire the land mentioned in the Schedule for the development of abadi of Sriganganagar and to issue notice under Section 4(1) of the Act of 1953. Before the learned single Judge, it was contended that the proceedings under the Act of 1953 could not be continued, for Section 59 A of the Act provides that the provision of the Act of 1953 will not apply to the acquisition under the Art and that for the requirement of the U. I. T., the proceedings for acquisition can only be taken under the Act. The learned single Judge as stated above, repelled this contention and held that the proceedings, which were taken under the Act of 1953 were valid and they can be continued as Section 59A of the Act is not a bar. The petitioners-appellants have filed these appeals praying for quashing the Notification Ex. 4 under Section 4(1) of the Act of 1953 and a direction that the proceedings under the Act of 1953 should not be continued and the Land Acquisition Officer, State of Rajasthan and Municipal Council, Sriganganagar may be directed not to continue the proceedings in pursuance of judgment dated May 6, 1983 of the learned single Judge.

7. Appearance was put in on behalf of the State of Rajasthan as well as Municipal Council, Sriganganagar.

8. Learned counsel for the parties submitted today that these appeals may be disposed of finally at the admission stage.

9. We have heard Mr. S. N. Sharma, learned counsel for the appellant and Mr. H. N. Calla, Govt. Advocate and Mr. B. R. Arora for Respondent No. 3.

10. The only point urged by the learned counsel for the appellants in these appeals is that according to Section 59A, no proceedings can be taken for the acquisition of the land which is required for the purpose of improvement and for any other purpose under the Act and, therefore, the view of the learned single Judge that the proceedings under the Act of 1953 are valid and can be continued, is not correct. Learned counsel appearing for the respondents supported the order of the learned single Judge in this respect.

11. There is no dispute with respect to the following facts that the Urban Improvement Trust, Sriganganagar was dissolved by the order of the State Government dated Aug. 31, 1978 that the Notification (Ex. 4) dated April 23, 1980 issued by the Government was published on September 25, 1980 and that the Urban Improvement Trust was re-constituted by the order dated March 6, 1981.

12. Section 59-A of the Act was inserted w.e.f. December 2, 1972 by Section 5 of the Rajasthan Act No. XXVI of 1976, published in the Rajasthan Gazette Extraordinary, Part IV-A dated April 17, 1976 at page 37. Section 59-A of the Act reads as under:--

'59-A. Provisions of the Rajasthan Land Acquisition Act not to apply to acquisition under this Act. (1) Notwithstanding anything contained in the Rajasthan Land Acquisition Act, 1953 (Rajasthan Act No. XXIV of 1953), hereinafter referred to as the Acquisition Act, no proceedings shall be taken thereunder for the acquisition of land required for the purpose of improvement or for any other purpose under this Act.

Provided that nothing herein contained shall apply to any proceeding for the acquisition of land for purposes of improvement or for any other purposes under this Act instituted under the Acquisition Act on or after the 2nd flay of December, 1972 and pending on the date of the commencement of the Rajas-than Urban Improvement (Amendment) Act, 1976, and all such proceedings shall be continued and completed under and in accordance with the Acquisition Act subject to the condition that reference to the word 'compensation'' wherever occurring in the Acquisition Act shall as from the 20th day of April, 1972, be construed as references to the word 'amount' as if for the word 'compensation' the word 'amount' were substituted.'

13. Section 4 of the Act of 1953, which occurs in Part II, deals with preliminary proceedings of acquisition. Material portion of Section 4 (1) of the Act of 1953 is as follows: --

'4. Preliminary proceedings preceding intended acquisition. -

(1) Whenever the State Government consider it necessary or expedient to acquire land in any locality needed or likely to be needed for a public purpose, it shall, by an order published in accordance with the provisions of Sub-section (4) of Section 45, require any offi-cer subordinate to it and generally or specially authorised in this behalf, to enter upon or into any land in such locality, accompanied by his servants and workmen, if any

(a) to survey and take levels of such land suitable for such purpose.

(b) to dig or bore into the sub-soil thereof.

(c) to set out the boundaries of such land and the intended line of the work, if any, proposed to be carried out thereon or therein.

(d) Where otherwise the survey cannot ho completed or the levels cannot be taken or the boundaries of the line cannot be set out, to cut down and clear away any part of any standing crop, fence or jungle.

(e) to mark the levels taken or the boundaries or the intended line of work by placing marks and cutting trenches.

(f) to do all other acts necessary to ascertain whether land is suitable for such public purpose, and

(g) to inquire into and ascertain the particulars of the persons interested in such land :

Provided that no person shall enter into any building or upon any enclosed court or garden attached to a dwelling house (unless with the consent of the occupier thereof) without giving such occupier at least seven days notice in writing of his intention to do so.'

Section 59-A (1) begins with non obstante clause. It lays down that despite anything being contained in the Act of 1953, 'no proceedings shall be taken' for the acquisition of the land under the Act of 1953 for the purpose of improvement or for any other purpose under the Act. The expression used is 'shall be taken'. A proviso has been appended to it, which lays down that Section 59-A (1) will not apply to any proceedings for acquisition of the land (i) for purpose of improvement; or (ii) for any other purpose under the Act, which have been initiated under the Act of 3953 on or after December 2, 1972 and, which were pending on the date of the commencement of the Rajasthan Urban Improvement (Amendment) Act (No, XXVI of 1976). The proviso further lays down that all such proceedings which were pending shall be 'continued and completed' in accordance with the Act ot 1953. This is, however, subject to the condition that reference to the word 'compensation' wherever occurring in the Act of 1953 shall as from April 20, 1972, be construed as references to the word 'amount' as if for the word 'compensation' the word 'amount' were substituted. A reading of Section 59-A (1) of the Act clearly shows that, it is only attracted when the proceedings are to be taken in respect of the purposes mentioned therein, for, expression used is 'shall be taken'. In Section 59-A, the following words have been used : 'shall be taken', 'instituted', and 'continued and completed.' The proviso makes it abundantly clear that if the acquisition proceedings have been initiated under the Act of 1953 on or after December 2, 1972 and which were pending on the date when the Rajasthan Act No. XXVI of 1976 came into force, then, such proceedings have to be continued and com-pleted in accordance with the provisions contained in the Act of 1953 subject to the condilions specified therein.

14. Let us first make a probe as to the meaning of the word 'take'.

15. In Webster's Third New International Dictionary, Volume III, it is stated that the word 'take' means 'to set in motion (as a law suit), to institute (proceedings) (Legal action)'.

16. In Mangulal Chunilal v. Manilal Maganlal, AIR 1968 SC 822, the expression 'take proceedings' as used in Section 481(1)(a) of the Bombay Provincial Municipal Corporation Act (No. LIX of 1949) was examined. It was observed as follows (Para 7):--

'It is true that the word 'take' has various meanings but no dictionary or authority has been placed before us to show that the word can mean 'cause to be taken'. It seems to us that the word 'take' was used because if the word 'institute' had been used it may not have been appropriate to cover all proceedings that can be taken under Section 481(1) (a).'

It is, thus, clear that the expression 'shall be taken' used in Section 59-A of the Act refers to the initiation of the proceedings or instituting the proceedings. This is very clear from the proviso to Section 59-A (1) of the Act as the proceedings instituted under the Act of 1953 after December 2, 1972 and pending on the date when the Rajasthan Act No. XXVI of 1976 came into force have been protected. At the time when the Notification Ex. 4 under Section 4 (1) of the Act of 1953 was issued on April 23, 1980 which was published in the Rajasthan Gazette on September 25, 1980 only the Municipal Council, Sriganganagar was in existence and the U. I. T. had already been dissolved by the order dated March 31. 1978 of the State Government. At the time when Notification (Ex. 4) was issued, the Urban Improvement Trust was not in existence and Section 59-A of the Act can only be invoked when the Urban Improvement Trust is in existence and the land is acquired for the purpose of improvement or for the purposes specified under the Act. The proceedings were instituted after December 2, 1972 under the Act of 1953 and they were pending when the Urban Improvement Trust was re-constituted on March 6,1981 after its dissolution by the State Government by its order dated August 31, 1978. Between August 13, 1978 and March 6, 1981, the Urban Improvement Trust was not in existence. In the Notification (Ex. 4) dated April 23, 1980, it is mentioned:--

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It may be recalled that this Notification Exhibit 4 dated April 23, 1980 was issued under Section 4 (1) of the Act of 1953. It cannot be said that the proceedings were initiated under Section 59-A of the Act. As no proceedings have been initiated at the instance of the Trust for the purpose of improvement or any other purpose specified under the Act, the learned single Judge, in our opinion, was right in holding that the proceedings which were initiated under the Act of 1953 were valid and they can be continued and completed under the Act subject to the condition specified under the proviso to Section 59-A (1) of the Act.

17. No other point was pressed for our consideration.

18. There is no force in these appeals and they are, accordingly, dismissed without any order as to costs.


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