VIRENDRA SINGH Vs. STATE OF RAJASTHAN AND ORS
LAWS(RAJ)-2016-2-111
HIGH COURT OF RAJASTHAN
Decided on February 01,2016

VIRENDRA SINGH Appellant
VERSUS
State Of Rajasthan And Ors Respondents


Referred Judgements :-

RAMBHAI LAKHABAI BHAKT V. STATE OF GUJARAT [REFERRED TO]
ABDUL JABAR BUTT V. STATE OF JAMMU & KASHMIR [REFERRED TO]
BIMLA DEVI V. STATE OF HARYANA [REFERRED TO]
LINDSAY PETROLEUM CO. V. HURD [REFERRED TO]
STATE V. JAIPUR NAGAR GRAHA NIRMAN SAHAKARI SAMITIYA ASSOCIATION [REFERRED TO]
U.P. JAL NIGAM V. JASWANT SINGH [REFERRED TO]
SHARMA AGRO INDUSTRIES V. STATE OF HARYANA [REFERRED TO]
SREE BALAJI NAGAR RESIDENTIAL ASSOCIATION V. STATE OF TAMIL NADU [REFERRED TO]
GOVT. OF NCT OF DELHI V. JAGJIT SINGH [REFERRED TO]
JDA V. VIJAY KUMAR [REFERRED TO]
STATE OFBIHAR VS. KAMESHWAR SINGH:STATE OF MADHYA PRADESH:GOVERNMENT OF THE STATE OF UTTAR PRADESH:KAMESHWAR SINGH [REFERRED TO]
RAM NARAIN SONS LIMITED VS. ASST COMMISSIONER OF SALES TAX [REFERRED TO]
VENKATARAMANA DEVARU STATE OF MYSORE VS. STATE OF MYSORE:VENKATARAMANA DEVARU [REFERRED TO]
COMMISSIONER OF INCOME TAX MYSORE TRAVANCORE COCHIN AND COORG BANGALORE COMMISSIONER OF INCOME TAX BANGALORE VS. INDO MERCANTILE BANK LIMITED PANGAL VITTAL NAYAK AND CO LIMITED [REFERRED TO]
JAYANTILAL AMRATLAL SHODHAN VS. F N RANA [REFERRED TO]
PATEL CHUNIBHAI DAJIBHA VS. NARAYANRAO KHANDERAO JAMBEKAR ANOTHER [REFERRED TO]
CORPORATION OF CALCUTTA VS. LIBERTY CINEMA [REFERRED TO]
MOON MILLS LIMITED VS. M R MEHER PRESIDENT INDUSTRIAL COURT BOMBAY [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF ORISSA VS. SUDHANSU SEKHAR MISRA [REFERRED TO]
MAHARASHTRA STATE ROAD TRANSPORT CORPORATION VS. BALWANT REGULAR MOTOR SERVICE AMRAVATI [REFERRED TO]
PUNJAB PRODUCE AND TRADING GO LIMITED VS. COMMISSIONER OF INCOME TAX WEST BENGAL CALCUTTA [REFERRED TO]
RAVAL AND CO VS. K G RAMACHANDRAN [REFERRED TO]
RAJPUT RUDA MEHA VS. STATE OF GUJARAT [REFERRED TO]
S SUNDARAM PILLAI KOUSALAYA DEVT MURUGESA MUDALIAR N S DHANALAKSHMI AMMAL THAHIRA BEEVI M BALAKRISHNAN K R KRISHNAN VS. V R PATTABIRAMAN:P LAKSHMINARAYANA CHARYA:SELVARAJ CHETTIAR:B S RAMACHARI:R A MUTHIAH NADAR:FATHIMA BAI:P BHANUMATT [REFERRED TO]
MUNICIPAL CORPORATION OF DELHI VS. GURNAM KAUR [REFERRED TO]
UJJAINVIKASPRADHIKARAN UJJAIN VIKAS PRADHIKARAN UJJAIN VIKAS PRADHIKARAN VS. RAJ KUMARJOHRI:BANSIDHAR:KANNAIYALAL [REFERRED TO]
GANDHI GRAH NIRMAN SAHKARI SAMITI LIMITED VS. STATE OF RAJASTHAN [REFERRED TO]
GAURI SHANKAR GAUR VS. STATE OF UTTAR PRADESH [REFERRED TO]
JAIPUR DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY VS. RADHEY SHYAM [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF MAHARASHTRA VS. DIGAMBAR [REFERRED TO]
SAM HIRING CO VS. A R BHUJBAL [REFERRED TO]
PRATAP CHANDA SHEO NARAIN VS. STATE OF RAJASTHAN [REFERRED TO]
MUNICIPAL CORPORATION OF GREATER BOMBAY VS. INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT INVESTMENT CO PRIVATE LIMITED [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF RAJASTHAN VS. D R LAXMI [REFERRED TO]
SECRETARY JAIPUR DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY JAIPUR VS. DAULAT MAL JAIN [REFERRED TO]
RAMNIKLAL N BHUTTA VS. STATE OF MAHARASHTRA [REFERRED TO]
HAJI SAEED KHAN VS. STATE OF UTTAR PRADESH [REFERRED TO]
DELHI ADMINISTRATION VS. GURDIP SINGH UBAN [REFERRED TO]
SIKKIM SUBBA ASSOCIATES VS. STATE OF SIKKIM [REFERRED TO]
WADI VS. AMILAL [REFERRED TO]
HINDUSTAN PETROLEUM CORPORATION LTD VS. DARIUS SHAPUR CHENNAI [REFERRED TO]
COMPETENT AUTHORITY VS. BARANGORE JUTE FACTORY [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF KARNATAKA VS. ALL INDIA MANUFACTURERS ORGANIZATION [REFERRED TO]
STATE OF PUNJAB VS. SANJEET SINGH GREWAL [REFERRED TO]
DHAMPUR SUGAR KASHIPUR LTD VS. STATE OF UTTRANCHAL [REFERRED TO]
SOORARAM PRATAP REDDY VS. DISTRICT COLLECTOR [REFERRED TO]
BHARAT AMRATLAL KOTHARI VS. DOSUKHAN SAMADKHAN SINDHI [REFERRED TO]
BONDU RAMASWAMY VS. BANGLORE DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY [REFERRED TO]
NAND KISHORE GUPTA VS. STATE OF UP [REFERRED TO]
DELHI AIRTECH SERVICES PVT LTD VS. STATE OF U P [REFERRED TO]
RAGHBIR SINGH SEHRAWAT VS. STATE OF HARYANA [REFERRED TO]
KAMAL TRADING PRIVATE LIMITED VS. STATE OF WEST BENGAL [REFERRED TO]
BHENSREADGARH PANCHAYAT SAMITI HI GRADE TEACHERS ASSOCIATION VS. STATE OF RAJASTHAN [REFERRED TO]
JAIPUR DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY VS. LALARAM [REFERRED TO]
SURINDER SINGH BRAR VS. UNION OF INDIA [REFERRED TO]
PUNE MUNICIPAL CORPORATION VS. HARAKCHAND MISIRIMAL SOLANKI [REFERRED TO]
BHARAT KUMAR VS. STATE OF HARYANA [REFERRED TO]
SITA RAM VS. STATE OF HARYANA [REFERRED TO]
MAGNUM PROMOTERS P. LTD. VS. UNION OF INDIA [REFERRED TO]
MOHAN SINGH GILL VS. STATE OF PUNJAB [REFERRED TO]


JUDGEMENT

Bela M. Trivedi, J. - (1.)All the petitions involving similar issues were heard together with the consent of the learned counsels for the parties and are being disposed of by this common judgment.
(2.)The petitioners in the present batch of petitions have challenged the land acquisition proceedings initiated by the respondents under the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 (hereinafter referred to as the said Act of 1894'), in respect of the lands in question sought to be acquired for the Ajmer Agra Ring Road, spread across 47 villages, admeasuring in aggregate about 1,578.958 hectares. The petitioners have also sought the declaration that the said land acquisition proceedings have lapsed in view of Sec. 24(2) of The Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 (hereinafter referred to as 'the Act of 2013'). Though the respondents have filed the reply in each of the petitions, the rejoinder by the petitioners and other affidavits as well as the documents have been filed in SBCWP No. 9126/14 only, for being read in other writ petitions too. Hence SBCWP No. 9126/14 was treated as the lead case.
(3.)Faxtual Matrix:
3. 1. The respondents, having prepared an integrated infrastructural project consisting of transport corridor, for fast moving traffic while connecting the city area in a circle along with a development corridor found necessary for the planned development of the Jaipur City and for the proper functioning of the transport corridor itself, the respondent No.1 had issued the notifications under Sec. 4 dated 15.7.05 for acquisition of the lands in question for the said integrated project in two phases. The respondent No. 3, Land Acquisition Officer having submitted the reports under Sec. 5A of the said Act, the respondent No.1 had issued the declarations under Sec. 6 dated 4.8.06 and 5.8.06, which were published in the official gazette on 18.8.06. The respondent No.3, LAO thereafter had passed village wise awards which were approved by the State Government in the year 2008 and 2009.

3. 2. Most of the petitioners claiming to be the khatedars of their respective agricultural lands, had initially challenged the said land acquisition proceedings by filing the writ petitions being No. 997/06, 800/08, 8827/07, 9063/07, 9227/07, 1394/08, 1396/08 and 2205/08. The said petitions came to be disposed of vide order dated 4.5.11 and 15.2.12 directing the petitioners to make representations before the State Empowered Committee constituted by the Government, and to approach the court if any grievance survived after the decision of the committee.

3. 3. It appears that the petitioners through their representatives had made the representations before the said Empowered Committee, however the same came to be rejected by the said Committee. The petitioner Virendra Singh along with other petitioners therefore had again filed writ petitions being Nos. SBCWP No. 8200/12, 8149/12, 8198/12 and 8199/12, in which the respondents had raised preliminary objections regarding the maintainability of the writ petitions to the effect that some of the petitions were filed in the name of dead persons, and in other petitions, names of many petitioners were repeated in the cause-title of the same petition or of other petitions. Pending the said four petitions, the petitioner Virendra Singh of the SBCWP No. 9126/14 along with other petitioners, filed 34 writ petitions which are listed at Serial Nos. 1 to 34 in the present order. At the relevant time, their being call of strike given by the Bar Association, the petitioner Virendra Singh had remained personally present along with other petitioners in the court and had prayed to do the needful. The court without being technical into the matter had permitted the said petitioners to withdraw their earlier set of four petitions, vide the order dated 22.9.14, and pursue their 34 petitions.

3. 4. In the said set of 34 petitions, the court after hearing the learned counsels for the parties had declined to grant any interim relief pending the petitions vide the order dated 24.9.14. Being aggrieved by the said order, the SAW being No. 1539/14 was filed before the Division Bench, only in case of SBCWP No. 9126/14. The said appeal came to be allowed by the Division Bench vide the order dated 29.10.14 against which the SLP being No. 31076/14 was filed by the respondents before the Supreme Court. The said SLP came to be disposed of by the Supreme Court vide the order dated 5.1.15 on the ground that the High Court had commenced day-to-day hearing of the main petitions. It appears that the other DB Appeals subsequently filed before the Division Bench against the order dated 24.9.14 also came to be disposed of by the Division Bench in view of the said order passed by the Supreme Court. The petitions at Sr. No. 35 to 86 were subsequently tagged along with the said 34 petitions at the request made by the learned counsels for the parties.

3. 5. The present batch of eighty six petitions have been filed by the petitioners alleging interalia that the notification under Sec. 4 was not published in accordance with the provisions of the said Act of 1894 and that there was violation of the principles of natural justice while preparing the reports under Sec. 5A of the said Act. The petitioners have also alleged that the acquisition proceedings initiated without framing any scheme as contemplated under Sec. 38 and 39 of the JDA Act were invalid and the purpose for which the lands were sought to be acquired could not be said to be a public purpose . The petitioners have also alleged that the allotment of 25% developed lands to the khatedars on the basis of the circular dated 27.10.05 issued by the State Government was not in consonance with the provisions of the said Act and therefore was illegal. According to the petitioners, in some of the cases though awards were passed under the Act of 1894, five years or more prior to the commencement of the Act of 2013, the physical possession of the lands was not taken nor the compensation was paid, and hence the acquisition proceedings in respect of such lands have lapsed in view of Sec. 24(2) of the Act of 2013.

3. 6. The petitions have been resisted by the respondents by filing the replies contending interalia that all the mandatory provisions contained in Sec. 4, 5A and 6 were duly complied with before passing of the Awards. According to the respondents, the petitions were not only barred by the principles of constructive res-judicata but were liable to be rejected on the ground of delay, laches, acquiescence, estoppel and waiver. It has been contended that during the course of acquisition proceedings, most of the persons interested/beneficiaries had surrendered their lands for the project in lieu of the compensation in the form of 25% developed land and the said fact has been mentioned in the awards also. According to the respondents the developed lands to be alloted to such petitioners have already been reserved, and the lottery for specific allotment was also held. The respondents have further stated that out of the total area of 1,578.958 hectares under acquisition for the project, the persons interested had surrendered about 1,047.3073 hectares of land at the time of passing of the awards in the year of 2008 and 2009, and due to the disputes with regard to 78.5593 hectares of land, the references were made to the civil court and amount of compensation was deposited before coming into force of the Act of 2013. According to the respondents, even after passing of the awards several persons had surrendered their lands with the JDA in lieu of compensation in the form of developed land for whom also the reservation of the plots have been made. Thus, the possession of about more than 95% of the lands under acquisition was with the respondents, and the possession of less than 100 hectares spread in small patches across few villages had to be taken. The compensation of almost all lands under acquisition was either paid or deposited. It is also stated that the work has already been assigned for the implementation of the prestigious and important project, and in the event of non availability of land to the contractors, the public exchequer would be effected adversely apart from delaying the project. While denying the allegations about the non-compliance of the provisions contained in the said Act, the respondents have prayed to dismiss the petitions.

3. 7. The petitioners have filed their rejoinder to the reply filed on behalf of the respondents, to which the respondents have filed counter affidavit. Both the parties have produced voluminous documents in support of their respective cases. The court had called for the original files from the Government for perusal, and also called for the original record of the petitions filed by the petitioners earlier. For the sake of convenience, the assorted facts and chequerred history of litigation as emerging from the voluminous record of petitions may be summarised in the tabular form as under:-
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