Sri. Ramesh Ranganathan, ACJ. -
(1.)Writ Appeal Nos. 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 and 25 of 2016 have been filed by the Special Deputy Collector cum Land Acquisition Officer, and the Hyderabad Metro Rail Limited, aggrieved by the Common order passed by Justice S.V. Bhatt on 02.03.2015. W.A. Nos. 22, 123 and 135 of 2016, W.A. No.259 and 260 of 2015, and cross objections in W.A. No. 22 of 2016 are preferred against the common order passed by Justice P. Naveen Rao on 20.02.2015. Parties shall, hereinafter, be referred to as they were arrayed in the Writ Petitions against which these appeals have been preferred under Clause 15 of the Letters Patent.
(2.)Facts, to the limited extent necessary, are that land acquisition proceedings were initiated in the subject areas i.e., Nampally, Begumpet and Secunderabad under the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 ( 1894 Act ). The section 4(1) Notification was issued on 25.04.2013, the Sec. 5(a) enquiry was held on 27.04.2013, and the Sec. 6 declaration was issued on 09.07.2013. Notice of the award enquiry was issued on 24.07.2013. The respondents claim that the award enquiry was held, the Government granted approval, under Sec. 11 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 (the 1894 Act for short) on 19.12.2013, and the award was pronounced on 23.12.2013, and it is only thereafter that the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 ( the 2013 Act ) came into force on 01.01.2014. It is, however, not in dispute that the notice of the award, under Sec. 12(2) of the 1894 Act, was communicated to all the petitioners only after 01.01.2014, to some on 08.01.2014, to some others a few months after 01.01.2014, and to a few others more than a year or a year and a half after the 2013 Act came into force.
(3.)It is only after receipt of the notices, under Sec. 12(2) of the 1894 Act, did those, whose lands were subjected to acquisition, invoke the jurisdiction of this Court under Art. 226 of the Constitution contending that: (a) they were entitled to compensation under the 2013 Act in view of Sec. 24(1)(a) thereof; (b) alternatively, they were entitled to compensation under the 2013 Act in view of the proviso to Sec. 24(2); and (c) the award was ante-dated and was made not on 23.12.2013, but on or around the date when the Sec. 12(2) notices were issued to them.