SMT. KA MARY MUKHIM Vs. COLLECTOR-CUM-DEPUTY COMMISSIONER EAST KHASI HILLS AND ANR.
HIGH COURT OF GAUHATI
Smt. Ka Mary Mukhim
Collector -Cum -Deputy Commissioner East Khasi Hills And Anr.
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(1.)THIS is an application seeking a writ in the nature of mandamus and/or any other appropriate writ, order or direction commanding the Respondent No. 1, namely, the Collector -cum -Deputy Commissioner, East Khasi Hills District, Shillong to refer the award in Land Acquisition case No. 9 of 1982 to the proper Court as provided under Section 18/30 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 hereinafter referred to as 'the Act'. In the said Land Acquisition case No. 9/82 the award was given by the Collector on 24.5 84 whereafter a notice under Section 12(2) of the Act was issued to the Petitioner on 4.6.84, a copy whereof has been annexed to the writ petition as Annexure 'A'. The notice shows that the award was made under Section 11 of the Act and the sum payable to the Petitioner was Rs. 3501.75 P. only and it stated that if the Petitioner was willing to accept payment. She should appear before the Collator personally on 13.6.84 at 11 A.M. A similar notice was issued to the Respondent No. 2 Sri Kones Roy L. Cassah on the same date, a copy whereof is also annexed as annexure 'B' to this petition. That notice showed that the Respondent No. 2 was given Rs. 34,413.75P and he was also similarly asked to appear personally before the Collector on 13.6.84.
(2.)THE Petitioner thereafter submitted an application to the Collector East Khasi Hills, Shillong. Annexure 'C' to the petition for reference either under Section 18 or under Section 30 of the Act to the Special Judicial Officer trying land acquisition cases, Shillong in regard to apportionment of the compensation between the Petitioner and the Respondent No. 2, and for staying payment of the compensation both the Petitioner and to the Respondent No. 2 pending decision of the reference. The Petitioner in that application claimed that the Respondent No. 2 in fact had got no land of his own and the acquired land being her ancestral land the entire compensation money should have been awarded to her. Hence, she pray for reference.
(3.)IT is settled law that after the Collector gives his award if a party raises objection to the award and presents an appropriate application for a reference, if the conditions for making, reference are fulfilled, it is incumbent on the Collector to make a reference according to law and he cannot refuse to make the reference; and if he refused to make the reference acting arbitrarily, a writ of mandamus may be issued under Article 226 of the Constitution of India.
In the instant case, the Petitioner having duly applied for a reference and the conditions for such a reference having been fulfilled, it was incumbent on the part of the Collector to refer the matter to the Civil Court. The Collector in taking a decision to refer or not to refer is a quasi judicial authority and satisfies the test of a tribunal for the purpose of Article 227 of the Constitution of India and, as such, a writ of mandamus may issue directing the Collector to make the reference according to law.
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