Decided on January 11,2007



Swatanter Kumar, J. - (1.) The appropriate Government issued a notification under Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 (hereinafter referred to as 'the Act') being notification No. F.15(245)/60-LSG/L&H dated 24.10.1961 acquiring 1 bigha. 19 biswas of land situated in Village Nangloi Jat for a public purpose namely 'Planned Development of Delhi' at public expense, in furtherance to which notification under Section 6 of the Act being notification No. F4(5)/63 P&H dated 30.12.1968 was also issued. Notices under Sections 9 arid 10 of the Act were issued to the interested persons and after giving them hearing, the claims for compensation were settled vide award of the. Collector dated 31.1.1984. Upon actual measurement, the land was found to be measuring about 1 bigha and 19 biswas. This notification and award of the Collector was challenged by Sh. Daya Shanker vide CW No. 405/1984 titled as Daya Shanker v. UOI'. During the pendency of this writ petition, Sh. Daya Shanker died on 9.1.1992 and the present petitioners were brought on record, as legal heirs of the deceased Daya Shanker. This writ petition questioning the validity and legality of the notification and acquisition proceedings was dismissed on 26,3.2004. During the pendency of this petition, the court had protected the petitioners and had directed the parties to maintain status quo in regard to possession and occupation. According to the petitioners, despite dismissal of the writ petition, the possession of the demised land was not taken by the DDA and they continued to be in possession of the property. On 20.08.2004, the petitioners made a detailed representation to the DDA requesting them for de-notification of the land from acquisition. To this . representation, the petitioners also submitted a reminder to the respondents on 8.12.2004 praying for early disposal of their representation. Since the respondents failed to dispose of the representation, the petitioners were compelled to file another writ petition being WP(C) No. 1733-36/2005 in this court on 31.1.2005 praying for a writ of mandamus Commanding the respondents to decide within a reasonable time by way of a speaking order, the representation of the petitioners dated 20.8,2004. This writ petition was partially allowed by the court vide its order dated 7.4.2005. The relevant part of the order reads as under:- "The learned counsel appearing for the respondents states that the Competent Authority/Denotification Committee shall decide the representation of the petitioner within one month from today. We fail to understand as to why the appropriate body should not perform their obligations expeditiously in terms of the law, and why the citizens should be compelled to approach the Court with such prayers? Once a representation is moved, it is obligatory upon the authorities concerned to deal with the matter as expeditiously as possible and convey the decision so taken to the petitioner. At present, we are restrained from commenting any further in view of the undertaking given On behalf of the respondents that the representation shall be looked into and decided in accordance with law within one month from today. Accordingly, the petition is disposed of in view of the undertaking given to the Court, while leaving the parties to bear their own costs, with the observations that till that time the petitioner will not be dispossessed."
(2.) After passing of the above order, the competent authority vide its letter dated 11.7.2005 rejected the representation of the petitioners and declined to de-notify the land in question from acquisition. Aggrieved from the rejection, the petitioners have filed the present petition.
(3.) According to the petitioners, Sh. Daya Shanker, their late father, had purchased land measuring about 2 bighas comprised in Khasra No. 14/1 and 9/2 and 13 situated in village Nangloi Jat, Delhi vide registered sale deed dated 29.9.1961. After purchasing the land, a building was constructed thereupon and the Business of sale and purchase of oil seeds, running of an oil mill and manufacturing and processing of pickles, jams and chuttney etc. was being carried out from the said premises. The petitioners had obtained a license for carrying on the business and on 28.10.1961, a notice under Section 343 of the DMC Act, 1952 for demolition of the structure raised was served upon the petitioners but the construction was never demolished whereafter notification has been issued for acquisition of the land in village Nangloi Jat including the land in question. On 7th December, 1962, the Land Acquisition Collector is stated to have announced an award being Award No. 1440 of village Nangloi Jat, Delhi whereby the land was acquired for the purposes of remodeling of Nangloi drain, Delhi. Number of other awards were also made in relation to acquisition of land in the same village. In the representation as well as in the present petition, it was pleaded by the petitioners that the passage to the cremation ground and development of Maharaj Surajmal Stadium was completed long back and no purpose would be served by acquiring or taking over the possession of the land. The land of the applicants was stated to be a small strip between built up Stadium and the Nalla on the other side and if such a small piece of land is taken or structure is demolished, no useful purpose would be served as the surrounding area had already been developed. It was also stated that nearly 150 families involving 600 persons were dependent upon the enterprise being run from the demised land who would be affected and displaced and thus, there would be great hardship caused to the petitioners and those families dependent upon the said business.;

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