GUNDLA LAKSHMANA MURTHY AND OTHERS Vs. THE GOVT. OF A.P. REPRESENTED BY THE CHIEF SECRETARY HYDERABAD AND OTHERS
HIGH COURT OF ANDHRA PRADESH
Gundla Lakshmana Murthy And Others
The Govt. Of A.P. Represented By The Chief Secretary Hyderabad And Others
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Obul Reddy, J. -
(1.)These are a batch of writ petitions challenging the constitutional validity of the A P. Scheduled Areas Land. Transfer Regulation, 1959 (A.P Regulation I of 1959)(herein after referred for to a the Regulation) and praying either for the issuance of a writ of mandamus directing the respondent herein, the Government, of A. P. the Sub Collector a id Agency Divisional Officer, Parvathipuram and the Agency Special Deputy Tahsildar (Tribal Welfare) Parvatbipuram to act according to law by desisting from giving effect to the notices issued in each of the concerned petitions in pursuance of Sec. 3 (1) of the said Regulation or for the issuance of a writ of prohibition prohibiting the 2nd respondent in the concerned petitions from proceeding with the enquiries and pass such other orders as this court may deem fit and proper in the circumstances of each case.
(2.)Though separate petitions have been filed by each of the petitioners consequent on the action taken by the 2nd or 3rd respondents as the case may be, by issuing the impugned notices under Sec. 3 (2) of the Regulation, they have a common complaint against the respondent viz, that they have acted without jurisdiction; that they (petitioners) have title to and possession of the lands in question through their predecessors right from the year 1894 long before the passing of the Agency Tracts Interest and Land Transfer Act, 1917 (Madras Act I of 1917) and that, therefore, the rights acquired by them even prior to the Madras Act I of 1917 cannot be abridged or taken away by the Regulation; It is further complained that Sec. 3 (1) of the Regulation deprives them of the fundamental rights guaranteed to them under Articles 19 and 31 of the Constitution and that the proposed action to eject them from possession of the lands which they have been in uninterrupted possession and continuous enjoyment from 1894 through their predecessors, is annihilate of the rule of law enshrined in Art. 14 of the Constitution and as such, Sec. 3 is void and inoperative as it is repugnant to and inconsistent with Art. 13 (2) of the Constitution.
(3.)Another point urged in these petitions is that 2nd and 3rd respondents have not been empowered to take action under the Regulation as they have not been designated either as the Agency Divisional Officer or prescribed authority and that, in the absence of any rules having been framed by the State Govt, under Sec. 8 of the Regulation, any action taken or proposed to be taken by any authority required to be prescribed statutorily is null and void. Another contention is that the Regulation is only prospective in operation and not retrospective as it affects only transfers brought into being subsequent to the regulation coming into force and that, therefore, the Regulation cannot cover eases where persons like the petitioners have been in possession and enjoyment of the property even from 1894.
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