THAN SINGH Vs. UNION OF INDIA
HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA
UNION OF INDIA
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(1.) THERE are four matters before us: (1) Civil Reference No. 1-D of 1954, (2) Civil Original 6-D of 1954, (3) Civil Original 7-D of 1954, and (4) Civil Writ Application 14-D of 1954. In all these matters the same question of law, namely the validity of the Resettlement ot Displaced Persons (Land Acquisition) Act, 60 of 1948, is involved. They may all be conveniently dealt with in one judgment.
(2.) THE facts briefly are that the Government of India with a view to acquiring about 375 acres of land in village Basai Darapur for the resettlement of displaced persons issued two notifications on 1-1-1949 and 26-2-1949, A third notification was issued on 30-12-1950 in respect of another plot of land which was intended to be acquired for the same purpose. Some of the owners of the land proposed to be acquired filed a representative suit praying for (a) a declaration that Act 60 of 1948 and the two notifications issued on 1-1-1949 and 26-2-1949 were 'ultra vires' and illegal and (b) a permanent injunction restraining the Union of India from acquiring the land covered by the said notifications. This suit was dismissed by the trial Judge but when the matter came up in appeal before the learned District Judge he took the view that although the Act as a whole was valid the provisos to Section 7 (1) (e) offended against the provisions of Article 31 of the Constitution and were therefore 'ultra vires'. He accordingly referred two law points for the decision of this Court under section 113, Civil P. C. , namely:
(1) Whether Act 60 of 1948 is 'ultra vires' wholly or in part? and 2. whether the notifications issued by the Chief Commissioner under Section 3 of the Act were illegal and 'ultra vires? he indicated his own opinion to the effect that only the provisos to Section 7 (1) (e) were 'ultra vires'. Two other suits were filed by some other owners and these suits were transferred to this Court by the orders of Kapur J. The fourth matter is a petition for writ filed on behalf of Balkrishna who is also one of the owners of the land sought to be acquired, and this petition is based on identical grounds, namely the illegality of Act 60 of 1948.
(3.) COUNSEL for parties confined their arguments in the main to the provisions of Section 7 (1) (e)of the Act. No serious attempt was made to challenge any other portion of the Act although Mr. Tyagi did put forward the argument that Section 3 was 'ultra vires' inasmuch as it imported considerations of expediency as opposed to considerations of justice.;
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