BDA – The scheme which was framed was so much benevolent scheme that 40% of the 55% of the land reserved for the residential purpose was to be given to the landowners at their choice and they were also given the choice to obtain the compensation, if they so desire, under the provisions of the LA Act. Thus, it was such a scheme that there was no scope for any exclusion of the land in the ultimate final notification.= the matter cannot be left at the mercy of unscrupulous authority of the 24 BDA, the State Government or in the political hands. Considering the proper development and planned development of Bangalore city, let the Government issue a final notification with respect to the land which has been notified in the initial notification and there is no question of leaving out of the land in the instant case as option has been given to land owners to claim the land or to claim the compensation under the relevant LA Act which may be applicable in the case.

REPORTABLE
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CIVIL APPEAL NOS. 7661­63 OF 2018
[Arising out of S.L.P. (C) Nos.10216­10218/2018]
BANGALORE DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY
& ANR. … APPELLANTS
VERSUS
THE STATE OF KARNATAKA & ANR. … RESPONDENTS
WITH
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S.L.P. (C) Nos.16919­26/2018.
3
J U D G M E N T
ARUN MISHRA, J.
1. Delay condoned.
2. Leave granted.
3. The Bangalore Development Authority (for short, “the
BDA”) has questioned the orders passed by the Division Bench
of the High Court dismissing writ appeals vide judgment and
order dated 28.04.2017, confirming the order passed by the
Single Bench. The appeals have also been filed against the
orders of the Single Bench directly before this Court as Division
Bench has already dismissed the writ appeals arising out of the
same scheme/orders.
4. The BDA is Town Planning Authority for the city of
Bangalore, State of Karnataka and a notified developer. It is
entrusted with the task of preparation of city development
schemes and its execution. Section 15 of the Bangalore
Development Authority Act, 1976 (for short referred to as “the
BDA Act”) confers power to draw up the development schemes.
Section 16 of the BDA Act provides for the particulars to be
4
included in the development scheme. The same is required to
be published in terms of provisions contained in Section 17 of
the BDA Act in the official gazette and in the manner
prescribed therein. On 30.12.2008 the BDA published a
scheme and notification under Section 17 of the BDA Act for
the formation of the layout at as “Dr. K. Shivaram Karanth
Layout” including link roads.
5. The scheme was approved by Government of Karnataka
vide its orders dated 3.12.2008. 45% of the land covered under
the scheme was to be used for the civic amenities, playgrounds,
roads etc., and the residential sites would be formed by
utilizing the remaining 55% of the land. Out of this 55%
developed residential area i.e. 40% of 55% will be offered as
compensation to the farmers as specified in the scheme and the
remaining 60% of 55% will be the share of BDA. The farmers
were also given the option to accept either the developed eligible
residential land or opt for compensation as per the Land
Acquisition Act, 1894 (for short “the LA Act”). Notice to that
effect was thereby given to all concerned in accordance with the
provisions of sub­Sections 1 and 3 of Section 17 of the BDA Act
and in accordance with Section 36 of the BDA Act. The Special
5
Land Acquisition Officer, Bangalore Development Authority,
Bangalore, his staff, and workmen were authorized to exercise
the powers conferred under Section 4(2) of the LA Act and
section 52 of the BDA Act. Objections were also invited from
the interested persons to be filed within 30 days of the
publication of the notification. It was also mentioned that any
sale, mortgage, assignment, exchange or otherwise of any
layout or improvements made therein without sanction of the
Deputy Commissioner (Land Acquisition), Bangalore
Development Authority, Bangalore after the date of publication
of the notification shall under Section 24 of the LA Act be
disregarded by the Officer assessing compensation for such
parts of the said lands as will be finally acquired.
6. The BDA has to consider the objections to the preliminary
notification and submit them to the Government as required
under the BDA Act. Under section 18(3) of the BDA Act it is for
the Government to sanction the scheme and under Section 19
of the said Act, it is for the Government to make a final
declaration and publication.
7. The BDA received a large number of objections. State
Government also issued a direction to withdraw the acquisition
6
of the land to the extent of 257 acres and 20 guntas from
various villages. Representations for deletion were also
favourably considered for 446 acres and 7 guntas of the land.
In the year 2012, with regard to the withdrawal of acquisition of
446 acres and 7 guntas, and action of State Government
questions were raised in the Assembly and the State
Government ultimately ordered an inquiry to be held in the
year 14.11.2012 and yet another inquiry was ordered by the
State Government into the matter pertaining to the same
acquisition on 19.01.2013.
8. The writ petitions were then filed on the ground that
Government and the BDA had not taken any steps to issue a
final notification or to develop the land for the last 5 years. The
BDA refused to give permission to develop the land on the
ground of preliminary notification under Section 17 of the BDA
Act. Thus, right to enjoy the property has been taken away
without finalizing the acquisition. It was submitted that the
preliminary notification shall be deemed to have lapsed. Now,
Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land
Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 has
come into force. Therefore, it was urged that the impugned
7
notification issued under Section 17(1) and 17(3) of the BDA
Act was liable to be quashed, and a prayer was made to direct
the respondents to give permission to develop the land.
9. It was contended on behalf of the BDA that while the Land
Acquisition Officer was considering the representations under
Sections 18(3) of the BDA Act, the State Government has
directed the BDA to withdraw to the extent of 270 guntas of
land from various villages. In view of the large number of
representations filed under Section 18(1) of the BDA Act, time
has been consumed. Ultimately deletion of 446 acres 7 guntas
of land was favourably considered. In the meanwhile, the Board
of BDA ordered an in­house inquiry to consider the findings of
the Special Land Acquisition Officer regarding exclusion of
land. The State Government also initiated suo moto inquiry
vide Government Order dated 24.11.2012 and 19.1.2013 and
constituted a Committee consisting of Additional Chief
Secretary and Development Commissioner, based on the
newspaper reports and questions raised at the Assembly
pertaining to illegal and discriminatory proposals for
withdrawal/deletion of the land from the acquisition. It was
learnt that the Committee has completed the inquiry and issue
8
was before the State Government. In view of the pendency of
the inquiry report before the State Government and in view of
the practical difficulty, final notification under Section 19 of the
BDA Act could not be issued on time.
10. It was also contended by the BDA that notice dated
3.5.2014 was issued to the landowners as there was the need
for fresh inquiry. Therefore, the further process would be taken
pursuant to the notification. Thus, it was contended by the
BDA that no interference was called for in the writ petitions.
11. The Single Bench allowed the writ application and
quashed the notification with respect to the lands of the
appellants. The Single Judge in Writ Petition No.9640 of 2014
decided on 26th November 2014 along with other writ
applications has observed that the Division Bench of the High
Court in the case of H.N. Shivanna and Ors. vs the State of
Karnataka, Department of Industries and Commerce, Bangalore,
and Anr. (2013) 4 KCCR 2793 (DB) considering similar aspect
held that, even though under Karnataka Industrial Area
Development Act, no time limit has been prescribed, the period
9
of two years would be appropriate for the purpose of completing
acquisition. The Single Judge observed that:
“8. On the legal position as to whether the
provisions as contained in the Land Acquisition
Act insofar as the time period as fixed therein for
passing the final notification and the award
thereof could be imported into the BDA Act
which has been raised by the respondents, a
detailed consideration would not be necessary.
This is due to the fact that the Hon’ble Division
Bench of this Court while considering the matter
in the case of Sri H.N. Shivanna and Others vs.
State of Karnataka, Department of Industries and
Commerce, Bangalore and Another reported in
2013 (4) KCCR 2793 (DB) has elaborately
considered this aspect of the matter while taking
note of the acquisition process which was being
done under the KIAD Act wherein also no time
limit has been prescribed. The Hon’ble Division
Bench having accepted the position that there is
no time limit fixed under the special enactment
has also taken into consideration the
observations made by the Hon’ble Supreme
Court in the earlier cases under different
circumstances and has declared the position
that even though a time frame is not fixed in the
special enactment under which the acquisition is
being made, the reasonableness of the delay
should be considered in the facts of a case and
in that circumstance, a decision is to be taken,
but unreasonable delay would not be permitted.
While stating so, the Hon’ble Division bench has
also kept in view the fact that the Land
Acquisition Act prescribes a specific time frame
even for the enactments, roughly the period of
two years would be appropriate. Hence, on the
legal aspect, the said decision would settle the
issue. In the light of the judgment as rendered
by the Hon’ble Division Bench, the explanation
10
as put forth in the instant case needs to be taken
into consideration.”
12. Being aggrieved by the aforesaid decision, the writ appeal
was filed before the Division Bench, which has been dismissed.
The Division Bench of the High Court in the writ appeal,
observed thus:
“3. Being aggrieved by the order
Dt.26.11.2014 passed by the Hon’ble Learned
Single Judge in Writ Petition No.9640/ 2014 the
appellants beg to prefer this appeal.
4. It is respectfully submitted that the
respondent no.2 who was the appellant, filed the
writ petition challenging the Preliminary
notification issued by the Bangalore Development
Authority for the formation of the “Dr. K.
Shiarama Karanth Layout”.
5. The Petitioner was amongst the notified
Khatedars of Sy. No.15 of and Sy.No.31 of
Veerasagara Village, Yelahanka Hobli, Bangalore
North Taluk, Bangalore. It was contended that
after issuance of the Preliminary notification by
the Bangalore Development Authority for the
formation of the layout no steps have been taken
by the Bangalore Development Authority for the
completion of the acquisition proceedings. It was
contended that their right to enjoy the property
has been curtailed by the issuance of the
Notification by the Bangalore Development
Authority. It was contended that the action of
Bangalore Development Authority in not
proceeding further amounts to an abandonment
of the acquisition proceedings and hence the
preliminary Notification was sought to be quashed
11
in so far as the property of the petitioner was
concerned.”
13. Aggrieved by the aforesaid decisions, the appeals have
been preferred by the BDA in this Court. The decisions of the
Division Bench in H.N. Shivanna (supra) has been followed by
the Single Judge.
14. The BDA in the appeals has urged that decision of the
Constitution Bench of this Court interpreting the provisions of
Bangalore Development Authority Act, 1976 has been totally
ignored and overlooked. This Court has decided the same issue
in Offshore Holdings Private Limited v. Bangalore Development
Authority and Others (2011) 3 SCC 139, after consideration of
the previous judgments of this Court in Munithimmaiah v. State
of Karnataka (2002) 4 SCC 326 and Bondu Ramaswamy v.
Bangalore Development Authority & Ors. (2010) 7 SCC 129. It
was held that the BDA Act is a self­contained code and the time
frame of two years provided under Section 11A of the Land
Acquisition Act is not applicable to the BDA Act. The High
Court has failed to consider the judgment. This Court has held
that the period of five years as prescribed under Section 27 of
12
the BDA Act start from the date of publication of the
declaration under sub­Section (1) of Section 19 of the BDA Act
in the Official Gazette. The High Court has grossly erred in law
in holding otherwise. The learned counsel appearing on behalf
of the BDA has relied upon the Constitution Bench decision of
this Court in the case of Offshore Holdings (supra). The High
Court has totally ignored the said decision and had flouted the
same. In the facts and circumstances of the case, there was no
delay as a large number of objections were filed. The Land
Acquisition Officer considered deletion of certain land in an
illegal manner. The Government had also issued a direction in
regard to approx. 257 acres of the land. Ultimately, there was
a question raised about the proposed exclusion of the land in
an illegal manner, in the Assembly and the State Government
has ordered an inquiry in the year 2012. Yet another inquiry
was ordered in January, 2013. The in­house inquiry was also
conducted by the BDA and ultimately notice was issued in May
2014 that the entire matter has to be considered afresh.
Thereafter, the writ petitions were filed to quash the initial
notification and the notification was illegally quashed by the
High Court. Writ appeals were also dismissed. They have also
13
been illegally dismissed by a laconic order without considering
the decision of this Court and also the facts and circumstances.
The land was required for the planned development of
Bangalore city. Thus, the impugned orders are liable to be
quashed.
15. It was contended on behalf of the landowners that there
was undue delay in completion of the land acquisition
procedure, as for more than five years the final notification was
not issued. The writ petitions were filed. There was an undue
delay, even if the period of two years of time frame provided
under the LA Act, does not apply for issuance of final
notification under Section 19, there cannot be undue delay in
taking the steps. The acquisition could not have been kept in
lurch for such an unreasonable period as done in the instant
case. Thus, the High Court was fully justified in quashing the
final notification. When no time has been fixed under the BDA
Act to complete the issuance of final notification under Section
19, it would not mean that with an unreasonable delay such
steps can be taken, as there was restraint put upon the owners
by issuance of initial notification under Section 17. Right to
enjoyment of the property could not have been denied for an
14
unreasonable period. As there was a proposal to exclude the
land, and after High Court has quashed the preliminary
notification, certain developments have been made and the
property has exchanged hands. Thus, it would not be
appropriate to interfere in the matter owing to the delay on the
part of the BDA in approaching before the High Court as well as
this Court.
16. First, we take up the question as to whether the High
Court was legally justified on merits in quashing the
preliminary notification issued under Section 17. The
Constitution Bench of this Court in Offshore Holdings (supra)
has decided the question affirmatively. The BDA has issued
preliminary notification for acquisition of the lands. Nonfinalization
of the acquisition proceedings resulted in the filing
of the writ petitions before the High Court of Karnataka by the
owners in the year 1987. Certain lands were de­notified and the
permission which was granted earlier was withdrawn. The denotification
of the land was also withdrawn. It was urged that
the timeframe which was prescribed under section 6 and 11A of
the LA Act would form an integral part of the BDA Act. This
15
Court considered the scheme under the BDA Act and has
observed thus:
“33. The provisions of the Land Acquisition Act,
which provide for timeframe for compliance and
the consequences of default thereof, are not
applicable to acquisition under the BDA Act. They
are Sections 6 and 11A of the Land Acquisition
Act. As per Section 11A, if the award is not made
within a period of two years from the date of
declaration under Section 6, the acquisition
proceedings will lapse. Similarly, where
declaration under Section 6 of this Act is not
issued within three years from the date of
publication of notification under Section 4 of the
Land Acquisition Act [such notification being
issued after the commencement of the Land
Acquisition (Amendment and Validation)
Ordinance, 1967 but before the commencement of
Central Act 68 of 1984] or within one year where
Section 4 notification was published subsequent
to the passing of Central Act 68 of 1984, no such
declaration under Section 6 of the Land
Acquisition Act can be issued in any of these
cases.
xxx xxx xxx
35. Be that as it may, it is clear that the BDA
Act is a self­contained code which provides for all
the situations that may arise in planned
development of an area including acquisition of
land for that purpose. The scheme of the Act does
not admit any necessity for reading the provisions
of Sections 6 and 11A of the Land Acquisition Act,
as part and parcel of the BDA Act for attainment
of its object. The primary object of the State Act is
to carry out planned development and acquisition
is a mere incident of such planned development.
The provisions of the Land Acquisition Act, where
the land is to be acquired for a specific public
16
purpose and acquisition is the sum and
substance of that Act, all matters in relation to
the acquisition of land will be regulated by the
provisions of that Act. The State Act has provided
its own scheme and provisions for acquisition of
land.
xxx xxx xxx
50. Applying the above principle to the facts of the
case in hand, it will be clear that the provisions
relating to acquisition like passing of an award,
payment of compensation and the legal remedies
available under the Central Act would have to be
applied to the acquisitions under the State Act
but the bar contained in Sections 6 and 11A of
the Central Act cannot be made an integral part of
the State Act as the State Act itself has provided
specific time­frames under its various provisions
as well as consequences of default thereto. The
scheme, thus, does not admit such incorporation.
xxx xxx xxx
55. The principle stated in Munithimmaiah’s case
(supra) that the BDA Act is a self­contained code,
was referred with approval by a three Judge
Bench of this Court in the case of Bondu
Ramaswamy (supra). The Court, inter alia,
specifically discussed and answered the questions
whether the provisions of Section 6 of the Land
Acquisition Act will apply to the acquisition under
the BDA Act and if the final declaration under
Section 19(1) is not issued within one year of the
publication of the notification under Section 17(1)
of the BDA Act, whether such final declaration
will be invalid and held as under:
“79. This question arises from the
contention raised by one of the appellants
that the provisions of Section 6 of the Land
Acquisition Act, 1894 (“the LA Act”, for short)
will apply to the acquisitions under the BDA
Act and consequently if the final declaration
17
under Section 19(1) is not issued within one
year from the date of publication of the
notification under Sections 17(1) and (3) of
the BDA Act, such final declaration will be
invalid. The appellants’ submissions are as
under: the notification under Sections 17(1)
and (3) of the Act was issued and gazetted
on 3­2­2003 and the declaration under
Section 19(1) was issued and published on
23­2­2004. Section 36 of the Act provides
that the acquisition of land under the BDA
Act within or outside the Bangalore
Metropolitan Area, shall be regulated by the
provisions of the LA Act, so far as they are
applicable. Section 6 of the LA Act requires
that no declaration shall be made, in respect
of any land covered by a notification under
Section 4 of the LA Act, after the expiry of
one year from the date of the publication of
such notification under Section 4 of the LA
Act. As the provisions of the LA Act have
been made applicable to acquisitions under
the BDA Act, it is necessary that the
declaration under Section 19(1) of the BDA
Act (which is equivalent to the final
declaration under Section 6 of the LA Act)
should also be made before the expiry of one
year from the date of publication of
notification under Sections 17(1) and (3) of
the BDA Act [which is equivalent to Section
4(1) of the LA Act].
80. The BDA Act contains provisions
relating to acquisition of properties, up to
the stage of publication of final declaration.
The BDA Act does not contain the
subsequent provisions relating to completion
of the acquisition, that is, issue of notices,
enquiry and award, vesting of land, payment
of compensation, principles relating to
determination of compensation, etc. Section
36 of the BDA Act does not make the LA Act
18
applicable in its entirety, but states that the
acquisition under the BDA Act, shall be
regulated by the provisions, so far as they
are applicable, of the LA Act. therefore it
follows that where there are already
provisions in the BDA Act regulating certain
aspects or stages of acquisition or the
proceedings relating thereto, the
corresponding provisions of the LA Act will
not apply to the acquisitions under the BDA
Act. Only those provisions of the LA Act,
relating to the stages of acquisition, for
which there is no provision in the BDA Act,
are applied to the acquisitions under the
BDA Act.
81. The BDA Act contains specific
provisions relating to preliminary
notification and final declaration. In fact the
procedure up to final declaration under the
BDA Act is different from the procedure
under the LA Act relating to acquisition
proceedings up to the stage of final
notification. therefore, having regard to the
scheme for acquisition under Sections 15 to
19 of the BDA Act and the limited
application of the LA Act in terms of Section
36 of the BDA Act, the provisions of Sections
4 to 6 of the LA Act will not apply to the
acquisitions under the BDA Act. If Section 6
of the LA Act is not made applicable, the
question of amendment to Section 6 of the
LA Act providing a time­limit for issue of
final declaration, will also not apply.”
We may notice that, in the above case, the
Court declined to examine whether the provisions
of Section 11A of the Central Act would apply to
the acquisition under the BDA Act but
categorically stated that Sections 4 and 6 of the
Central Act were inapplicable to the acquisition
under the BDA Act.
19
xxx xxx xxx
123. Accepting the argument of the appellant
would certainly frustrate the very object of the
State law, particularly when both the enactments
can peacefully operate together. To us, there
appears to be no direct conflict between the
provisions of the Land Acquisition Act and the
BDA Act. The BDA Act does not admit reading of
provisions of Section 11A of the Land Acquisition
Act into its scheme as it is bound to debilitate the
very object of the State law. The Parliament has
not enacted any law with regard to development
the competence of which, in fact, exclusively falls
in the domain of the State Legislature with
reference to Entries 5 and 18 of List II of Schedule
VII.
124. Both these laws cover different fields of
legislation and do not relate to the same List,
leave apart the question of relating to the same
Entry. Acquisition being merely an incident of
planned development, the Court will have to
ignore it even if there was some encroachment or
overlapping. The BDA Act does not provide any
provision in regard to compensation and manner
of acquisition for which it refers to the provisions
of the Land Acquisition Act. There are no
provisions in the BDA Act which lay down detailed
mechanism for the acquisition of property, i.e.
they are not covering the same field and, thus,
there is no apparent irreconcilable conflict. The
BDA Act provides a specific period during which
the development under a scheme has to be
implemented and if it is not so done, the
consequences thereof would follow in terms of
Section 27 of the BDA Act. None of the provisions
of the Land Acquisition Act deals with
implementation of schemes. We have already
answered that the acquisition under the Land
Acquisition Act cannot, in law, lapse if vesting has
taken place. therefore, the question of applying
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the provisions of Section 11A of the Land
Acquisition Act to the BDA Act does not arise.
Section 27 of the BDA Act takes care of even the
consequences of default, including the fate of
acquisition, where vesting has not taken place
under Section 27(3). Thus, there are no provisions
under the two Acts which operate in the same
field and have a direct irreconcilable conflict.
125. Having said so, now we proceed to record our
answer to the question referred to the larger
Bench as follows:
For the reasons stated in this judgment, we
hold that the BDA Act is a self­contained code.
Further, we hold that provisions introduced in
the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 by Central Act
68 of 1984, limited to the extent of acquisition
of land, payment of compensation and
recourse to legal remedies provided under the
said Act, can be read into an acquisition
controlled by the provisions of the BDA Act but
with a specific exception that the provisions of
the Land Acquisition Act in so far as they
provide different time frames and
consequences of default thereof, including
lapsing of acquisition proceedings ,cannot be
read into the BDA Act. Section 11A of the Land
Acquisition Act being one of such provisions
cannot be applied to the acquisitions under the
provisions of the BDA Act.”
(emphasis supplied)
17. This Court has emphasized that the primary object of the
BDA Act is to carry out planned development. The State Act
has provided its own scheme. The time constraints of the land
acquisition are not applicable to the BDA Act. Making
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applicable the time frame of Section 11A of LA Act would
debilitate very object of the BDA Act. It is apparent that the
decision of the Single Judge as well as the Division Bench is
directly juxtaposed to the decision of Five Judge Bench of this
Court in Offshore Holdings (supra) in which precisely the
question involved in the instant cases had been dealt with. By
indirect method by making applicable the time period of two
years of 11A of LA Act mandate of BDA Act has been violated.
However, it is shocking that various decisions have been taken
into consideration particularly by the Single Judge, however,
whereas the decision that has set the controversy at rest, has
not even been noticed even by the Single Judge or by the
Division Bench. If this is the fate of the law of the land laid
down by this Court that too the decision by the Constitution
Bench, so much can be said but to exercise restraint is the best
use of the power. Least said is better, the way in which the
justice has been dealt with and the planned development of
Bangalore city has been left at the mercy of unscrupulous
persons of Government and the BDA.
18. It is apparent from the fact that the Single Judge has
relied upon the decision in H.N. Shivanna (supra) in which it
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was observed by the Division Bench that scheme to be
completed in 2 years otherwise it would lapse. It was precisely
the question of time period which was dwelt upon and what
was ultimately decided by this Court in Offshore Holdings
(supra) has been blatantly violated by the Single Judge and
that too in flagrant violation of the provisions and intendment
of the Act.
19. It is also apparent from the facts and circumstances of the
case that there were a large number of irregularities in the
course of an inquiry under Section 18(1) of the BDA Act.
Government had nothing to do with respect to the release of the
land at this stage, as the stage of final notification had not
reached but still the landowners in connivance with the
influential persons, political or otherwise, managed the
directions in respect of 251 acres of the land and Special Land
Acquisition Collector also considered exclusion of 498 acres of
the land against which the question was raised in the Assembly
and eyebrows were raised in public domain. Two inquiries were
ordered on 24.11.2012 and 19.1.2013 by the State Government
and based upon that inquiry, it was ordered and a public notice
was issued on 3rd May, 2014 that the BDA will consider the
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entire matter afresh. In the aforesaid backdrop of the facts, the
writ petitions came to be filed, it would not be termed to be the
bona fide litigation, but was initiated having failed in attempt to
get the land illegally excluded at the hands of Special Land
Acquisition Collector and the State Government and after the
inquiries held in the matter and the notice was issued to start
the proceedings afresh. At this stage, the writ petitions were
filed. In the aforesaid circumstances, it was not at all open to
the High Court to quash the preliminary notification issued
under Section 17, as the land owners, State Government and
BDA were responsible to create a mess in the way of planned
development of the Bangalore city.
20. The scheme which was framed was so much benevolent
scheme that 40% of the 55% of the land reserved for the
residential purpose was to be given to the landowners at their
choice and they were also given the choice to obtain the
compensation, if they so desire, under the provisions of the LA
Act. Thus, it was such a scheme that there was no scope for
any exclusion of the land in the ultimate final notification.
21. It is apparent from the circumstances that the matter
cannot be left at the mercy of unscrupulous authority of the
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BDA, the State Government or in the political hands.
Considering the proper development and planned development
of Bangalore city, let the Government issue a final notification
with respect to the land which has been notified in the initial
notification and there is no question of leaving out of the land
in the instant case as option has been given to land owners to
claim the land or to claim the compensation under the relevant
LA Act which may be applicable in the case.
22. It was contended on behalf of the landowners that certain
developments have taken place after the orders were passed
regarding exclusion of the land and when Section 27 provides a
limitation of five years after final notification, in case
development was not undertaken within five years, even the
final scheme would lapse. Thus, the principle enunciated in
Section 27 should be followed by this Court with respect to the
lapse of preliminary notification as well. We find that there is a
vast difference in the provisions and action to be taken
pursuant to the preliminary notification and the final
notification under Section 19. In the instant case, the facts
indicated that it was in the interest of the public, landowners,
BDA and State Government. The scheme had prior approval of
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State Government however at the cost of public interest yet
another scheme was sought to be frustrated by powerful
unforeseen hands and the issuance of final notification had
been delayed. Three inquiries were ordered, two by the State
Government and one by the BDA as the release of the land was
being proposed in an illegal manner. Hue and cry has been
raised about their illegalities in the Assembly as well as in the
public. Thus, for the delay, owners cannot escape the liability,
they cannot take the advantage of their own wrong having
acted in collusion with the authorities. Thus, we are of the
considered opinion that in the facts of the case the time
consumed would not adversely affect the ultimate development
of Bangalore city. The authorities are supposed to carry out the
statutory mandate and cannot be permitted to act against the
public interest and planned development of Bangalore city
which was envisaged as a statutory mandate under the BDA
Act. The State Government, as well as Authorities under the
BDA Act, are supposed to cater to the need of the planned
development which is a mandate enjoined upon them and also
binding on them. They have to necessarily carry it forward and
no dereliction of duty can be an escape route so as to avoid
26
fulfilment of the obligation enjoined upon them. The courts are
not powerless to frown upon such an action and proper
development cannot be deterred by continuing inaction. As the
proper development of such metropolitan is of immense
importance, the public purpose for which the primary
notification was issued was in order to provide civic amenities
like laying down roads etc. which cannot be left at the whim or
mercy of the concerned authorities. They were bound to act in
furtherance thereof. There was a clear embargo placed while
issuing the notification not to create any charge, mortgage,
assign, issue or revise any improvement and after inquiry, it
was clear that the notice had been issued in May, 2014, thus,
no development could have been made legally. Notification
dated 3rd May, 2014 was issued that re­inquiry was necessary
in the matter. The development made, if any, would be at the
peril of the owners and it has to give way to larger welfare
schemes and the individual interest and cannot come in the
way of the larger public interest. The acquisition was for the
proper and planned development that was an absolute
necessity for the city of Bangalore.
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23. In the circumstances, we have no hesitation in condoning
the delay. Though, it is apparent that the authorities had come
with certain delay, in the certain matters and the writ appeals
were also filed belatedly with the delay in the High Court,
however, considering the provisions of the scheme and the
method and manner wrong has been committed, it has
compelled us not only to condone the delay but also to act in
the matter so as to preserve the sanctity of the legal process
and decision of this Court in Offshore Holdings (supra).
24. We, therefore, direct the State Government as well as the
BDA to proceed further to issue final notification without any
further delay in the light of the observations made in the order.
The impugned orders passed by the Single Judge and the
Division Bench are hereby quashed and set aside. The scheme
and notification under Section 17 of the BDA Act are hereby
upheld with the aforesaid directions.
25. As noticed above, the Land Acquisition Officer proposed
exclusion of 251 acres of land from acquisition on being asked
by the Government after the preliminary notification was
issued. The Land Acquisition Officer, has considered another
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498 acres of land to be excluded from being acquired. In
connection to this, several questions were raised in the
Karnataka Legislative Assembly, as a result of which two
inquiries were ordered by the State Government i.e on
24.11.2012 and 19.01.2013. However, result of the inquiry is
not forthcoming. Further, it appears that the exclusion of the
lands from acquisition was proposed in connivance with
influential persons; political or otherwise. We are of the view
that the BDA and the State Government have to proceed with
the acquisition of these lands. We are also of the view that it is
just and proper to hold an inquiry for fixing the responsibility
on the officials of the BDA and the State Government for trying
to exclude these lands from acquisition.
26. Therefore, we appoint Hon’ble Mr. Justice K.N.
Keshavanarayana, former Judge of the Karnataka High Court
as the Inquiry Officer for fixing the responsibility on the officials
of the BDA and the State Government who were responsible for
the aforesaid. The Commissioner, BDA is hereby directed to
consult Inquiry Officer and pay his remuneration. Further, we
direct BDA to provide appropriate secretarial assistance and
logistical support to the Inquiry Officer for holding the inquiry.
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In addition, we authorize the Inquiry Officer to appoint
requisite staff on temporary basis to assist him in the inquiry
and to fix their salaries. Further, the BDA is directed to pay
their salaries. The State Government and the BDA are directed
to produce the files/documents in relation to the aforesaid
lands before the Inquiry Officer within a period of four weeks
from today. We request the Inquiry Officer to submit his report
to this Court as expeditiously as possible.
27. The State Government and the BDA are further directed to
proceed with the acquisition of the aforementioned lands
without excluding land from acquisition and submit a report to
this Court the steps taken by them in this regard within a
period of three months from today.
28. In addition, it was submitted at the Bar that several cases
where similar orders of exclusion in relation to lands notified
for acquisitions for the formation of ‘Dr. K. Shivarama Karantha
Layout’ have been passed by the High Court and that BDA has
failed to challenge those orders in connivance with the
landowners and influential persons. We hereby direct the BDA
to challenge all such orders/seek review of the said orders in
30
accordance with law within a period of three months from
today.
29. The appeals are disposed of in the aforesaid terms leaving
the parties to bear their own costs.
..……………………J.
(Arun Mishra)
New Delhi; ….…………………J.
August 3, 2018. (S. Abdul Nazeer)
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