SANTOSH SINGH Vs. UOI
LAWS(DLH)-2014-11-275
HIGH COURT OF DELHI
Decided on November 13,2014

SANTOSH SINGH Appellant
VERSUS
UOI Respondents




JUDGEMENT

S. Ravindra Bhat, J. - (1.)IN these proceedings, the petitioner seeks a declaration that the notification dated 13.12.2000 (under Section 4 of the repealed Land Acquisition Act, 1894 - hereinafter referred to as the "old Act") ; the declaration dated 07.12.2001 under Section 6 of the old Act in respect of the petitioner's land - to the extent the said notification and the declaration dealt with Khasra Nos. 29/6/2, 7/2, 180/2, 29/6/3, 7/3, 14 and 15 situated in the revenue estate of village Pochanpur, Tehsil Mehrauli, Delhi, be declared illegal and inoperative. Originally, the writ petitioner sought for quashing of these notifications to the extent that they dealt with the suit lands. In the application moved, i.e. C.M. No.7190/2014, it is urged that the said acquisition proceedings have lapsed by virtue of Section 24(2) of the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Settlement Act, 2013 (hereinafter referred to as the new LA Act) . After notice was issued, the respondents filed their reply. The application and writ petition were heard in these circumstances.
(2.)THE facts necessary to decide the case are that the petitioner claims to be the owner in possession of the suit lands and has - in support, relied upon several documents for that purpose. On 13.12.2000, these lands were sought to be acquired under a notification published under Section 4 of the old Act. The petitioner resisted the move and filed response to the notice issued by the DDA on 14.12.2000 under Section 5A of the old Act. The declaration - which was the next step under the old Act, was published on 07.12.2001 under Section 6 of the old Act. Thereafter on 21.03.2002, invoking the emergency clause, the respondents issued a notification under Section 17(1) of the old Act. Immediately the petitioner moved this Court. At the first hearing, the petitioner also sought for interim order staying dispossession. This Court, on 11.04.2002, made the following order in the said application:
"C.M. No.3989/2002

Notice for the date fixed.

Mr. Aggarwal accepts notice on behalf of respondent No.1. Ms. Sarkar accepts notice on behalf of respondents 2 to 4. Ms. Takiar accepts notice on behalf of respondent No.5.

In the meantime, possession will not be taken pursuant to the notification issued under Section 17(1) of the Land Acquisition Act. It is submitted by learned counsel for the petitioner that the demolition order has been stayed by the Court. Be that as it may this order will not come in the way of any action which the authorities may take in accordance with law pursuant to the order of demolition passed by the appropriate authority provided there is no stay of demolition. DASTI. Renotify on 29th April, 2002."

It is not in dispute that thereafter the interim order is subsisting and has been complied with by the parties - in that the respondents have not sought to dispossess the petitioner all this while. The other significant event is that the award - second action under the old Act, was made on 09.12.2002.

(3.)WITH effect from 01.01.2014, the new LA Act was brought into force. Section 114 of the new LA Act has the effect of repealing the old Act. Section 24, which is pertinent for the purpose of the present case - and has been relied upon in C.M. No.7190/2014 filed by the petitioner, reads as follows:
"24. (1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, in any case of land acquisition proceedings initiated under the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 "

(a) Where no award under section 11 of the said Land Acquisition Act has been made, then, all provisions of this Act relating to the determination of compensation shall apply; or

(b) Where an award under said Section 11 has been made, then such proceedings shall continue under the provisions of the said Land Acquisition Act, as if the said Act has not been repealed.

(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub -section (1) , in case of land acquisition proceedings initiated under the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, where an award under the said section 11 has been made five years or more prior to the commencement of this Act but the physical possession of the land has not been taken or the compensation has not been paid the said proceedings shall be deemed to have lapsed and the appropriate Government, if it so chooses, shall initiate the proceedings of such land acquisition afresh in accordance with the provisions of this Act:

Provided that where an award has been made and compensation in respect of a majority of land holdings has not been deposited in the account of the beneficiaries, then, all beneficiaries specified in the notification for acquisition under section 4 of the said Land Acquisition Act, shall be entitled to compensation in accordance with the provisions of this Act."

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