Seeking release of the land from the process of acquisition is not considered favourably. = writ petition filed before the High Court was in a certiorari proceeding, it was necessary for the High Court to secure the records and consider as to whether the possession had been validly taken and handed over to HUDA as claimed. Further whether in the layout plan as referred in the order dated 11.10.2014 impugned in the writ petition, the very item of land belonging to the appellants was reserved for the institutional plot, green belt and parking areas as claimed and as to whether the surrounding area had been developed by HUDA by forming the residential plots was also to be considered, though not in the nature of an appeal, but to satisfy itself on perusal of relevant records. The further contention on behalf of the appellants is that in respect of the very same layout this Court in the case of Patasi Devi Vs. State of Haryana & Ors. (2012) 9 SCC 503 has directed that the land involved therein be released. It is no doubt seen that in the said case the appellant who was the owner of the land which was acquired had constructed a house and in that light there being no document to indicate that the possession was taken over by putting a lock, it was held that the possession was not taken. Though that be the position it is also indicated that the case of the appellant therein was required to be considered in the same manner as was done in the case of M/s Sharad Farm and Holdings (P) Ltd. Apart from the said decision which relates to the very same layout, the learned counsel for the appellants has also relied on the decision in the case of Hari Ram & Anr. vs. State of Haryana & Ors. (2010) 3 SCC 621 wherein with reference to the Policy dated 26.10.2007 it is indicated that the similar land owners should receive a similar consideration when representation is made for deletion.

NON REPORTABLE

IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7317 OF 2019
(Arising out of SLP (Civil) No.3213 of 2016)
Krishan Chander & Anr. .…Appellant(s)
Versus
State of Haryana & Ors. …. Respondent(s)
J U D G M E N T
A.S. Bopanna,J.

   Leave granted.     
  1. The appellants are before this Court assailing the
    order dated 21.10.2015 passed by the High Court for the
    States of Punjab and Haryana in CWP No.22656/2015.
    The said writ Petition was disposed of along with the writ
    petition bearing CWP.No.22652 and 22653 of 2015
    through a common order. Through the said order the
    case sought to be made out by the appellants seeking

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release of the land from the process of acquisition is not
considered favourably. The writ petitions are accordingly
dismissed by the High Court.

  1. The brief facts are that the lands bearing Khasra
    No.19/2, 9 measuring 16 kanal situated in Village Para,
    District Rohtak, to which the appellants’ claim that their
    father was the owner, among other lands of several other
    land owners was acquired for development of Sector 36,
    Rohtak by issuing the Notification dated 15.12.2006
    issued under Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894
    (‘L.A. Act’ for short). The final declaration under Section
    6 was issued on 14.12.2007. The appellants contend
    that the land has not been utilised for the purpose for
    which it was acquired and in respect of several other
    lands acquired for the same purpose, it has been deleted
    from the process of acquisition and as such the lands
    belonging to the appellants also be deleted. In that
    regard the appellants, at the first instance, had
    approached the High Court through CWP.No.5836 of
  2. The said writ petition was disposed of through the

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order dated 27.03.2014 whereby the High Court on
taking note of the contentions had issued direction to the
respondents to verify the claim of the appellants and on
objective consideration of the whole matter if the
authorities are of the view that there is no likelihood of
utilisation of the appellants’ land for any public purpose,
consider the desirability of releasing the same subject to
the condition that the compensation if any received be
refunded. Pursuant thereto the representation dated
20.02.2014 which had already been made by the
appellants was taken note and an order dated
10.11.2014 was passed by the Secretary­cum­Director
General, Urban Estates Department Haryana, rejected
the claim of the appellants. Against such rejection, the
appellants were before the High Court in the present
round of litigation assailing the order dated 10.11.2014
which has led to the instant appeal. The respondents
through the counter affidavit filed herein on behalf of the
respondent No.2 have opposed the instant appeal.

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  1. Heard Shri J.B. Mudgil, learned counsel for the
    appellants, Shri B.K. Satija learned counsel for the
    respondents and perused the appeal papers.
  2. As noticed the claim put forth on behalf of the
    appellants is that the land bearing Khewat No.599/553
    Khatoni No.671, Killa No.19/2 (8­0) and 9(8­0) total
    measuring 16­0 situated within the Revenue Estate of
    Mouza Para, Hadbast No.67, Tehsil and District Rohtak
    though sought to be acquired under the Notification
    dated 15.12.2006 and 14.12.2007 for forming the Sector
    36 layout, the said land has not been utilised. In that
    regard seeking release of unutilised and unused land the
    appellants had made the representation dated
    20.02.2014. Since the request made through the
    representation is rejected through the order dated
    10.11.2014 the writ petition bearing C.W.P.
    No.22656/2015 was filed which is dismissed. A perusal
    of the order dated 21.10.2015 passed by the High Court
    would disclose that the High Court, having taken note
    that the impugned order discloses that while considering

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the representation the State Government has found that
the land was vacant at the time of publication of
Notification under Section 4 of the Act and it is still lying
vacant, the release in view of the Policy dated
26.10.2007, modified on 24.01.2011 is not tenable since
the said policy pertains to release of land over which the
residential buildings have been constructed. Taking
note of the same the High Court has dismissed the
petition without any further consideration.

  1. At the outset, it is necessary to take note that the
    writ petition was dismissed at the threshold without
    directing notice to the respondents and considering the
    grievance of the appellants in the backdrop of the
    contention urged. In a normal circumstance we do not
    find that there would be any impediment to dispose of at
    the threshold. However, in the present facts we notice
    that the order dated 10.11.2014 which was impugned
    before the High Court was an order which was passed
    pursuant to the direction issued in earlier order dated
    27.03.2014 passed by the High Court in CWP

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No.5836/2014. In the said writ petition the High Court
had taken note of the grievance that had been put forth
by the appellants that the respondents had acquired the
land much more than what was needed for the notified
public purpose and after utilisation of such land for the
said public purpose, a substantial part of the acquired
land is lying unutilised. It was also taken note that the
appellants had averred that they are still in possession of
the land as is evident from the entries in the Revenue
record and the photographs. Having taken note of the
case put forth, the Court had also observed that the High
Court has already taken a view in another matter that
the acquisition of land in excess to what is needed for a
bonafide public purpose is also detrimental to public
interest as it would be an unwarranted burden on the
State Exchequer. Having observed so, the High Court
had indicated that the question as to whether or not the
appellant’s unutilised land is still needed for a bonafide
public purpose has to be essentially determined by the
authorities only. It is in that light a direction had been
issued for consideration of the representation.

Page 6 of 15

  1. In that background a perusal of the order dated
    10.11.2014 impugned in the present writ petition bearing
    CWP.No.22656/2015 would disclose that the competent
    authority has noted that as per the fresh site survey, the
    land of the appellants is lying vacant. It is further
    observed that as per the layout plan of Sector 36 which is
    approved, the appellants’ land has been planned for
    institutional plot, green belt and parking area. In that
    circumstance, it is stated that the C.A., HUDA has
    recommended not to release any land in favour of the
    appellants. In that circumstance when presently the said
    order had been assailed in the writ petition challenging
    its correctness, that too when such order had been
    passed pursuant to the direction issued earlier by the
    High Court, a deeper examination was required by the
    High Court after calling for objections from the
    respondents.
  2. It is no doubt true that presently in the instant
    appeal before this Court the respondents have filed their
    objection statement and have sought to contend that the

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land is required for the purpose of the layout; that the
land in question being vacant land and since the
appellants had not filed the objections under Section 5­A
of the L.A. Act the consideration for deletion under the
Policy does not arise. Relying on objection statement the
learned counsel for the respondents has vehemently
contended that the possession of the land has been taken
under ‘Rapat Roznamcha’ on 09.12.2009. Reference to
the same is made indicating that out of the 88.24 acres of
which possession was taken the land bearing No.19/2 of
the appellants also forms a part. To contend that the
possession being taken by drawing a Panchnama is the
approved mode of taking possession, the learned counsel
has relied upon on the decisions in the case of Sita Ram
Bhandar Society, New Delhi vs. Lieutenant Governor,
Government of NCT, Delhi & Ors. (2009) 10 SCC 501;
in the case of M. Venkatesh vs. Commissioner,
Bangalore Development Authority (2015) 17 SCC 1
and in the case of Indore Development Authority vs.
Shailendra (2018) 3 SCC 412.

Page 8 of 15

  1. The learned counsel for the respondents has
    further relied on the decision in the case of V. Chandra
    Sekaran and Anr. vs. Administrative Officer & Ors.
    2012 (12) SCC 133 to contend that the land once
    acquired cannot be restored even if not used. At this
    stage itself it is necessary to be noticed that the said
    decision was in the circumstance where a subsequent
    purchaser had approached the Court and further in the
    instant case a policy is adopted by the respondents for
    release of land and appellant is seeking consideration on
    parity which is a matter for consideration one way or the
    other.
  2. The learned counsel for the appellants, on the
    other hand, contended that the Panchnama drawn for
    taking possession was not at the spot and in that regard
    has relied on the decision in the case of Banda
    Development Authority, Banda vs. Moti Lal Agarwal
    and Ors. 2011 (5) SCC 394. In that background though
    the fact of taking possession would become relevant in a
    circumstance to de­notify the land in terms of Section 48

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of the L.A. Act, the other aspects of the matter would
also arise herein, in view of the nature of consideration
made by the High Court in the earlier round and in that
background the correctness of the impugned order
passed by the competent authority dated 10.11.2014 was
to be noted in the present round of litigation. In so far as
the contention urged by the learned counsel for the
respondents that the appellants had entered into a
collaboration agreement with M/s Sharad Farm and
Holdings (P) Ltd. on 23.04.2007 after issuance of
Notification under Section 4 of the L.A. Act and has
received a sum of Rs.28,20,000/­ from them, the same
would have arisen for consideration and denial of relief at
the threshold only if the said M/s Sharad Farm and
Holding (P) Ltd based on such collaboration agreement
had approached the Court seeking for deletion of the
land. In the instant proceedings the appellants being the
owners of the notified land are seeking deletion and the
validity of such agreement would be an inter­se issue.

Page 10 of 15

  1. Though the respondents have further contended
    that the Policy for deletion provide for consideration only
    if objections under Section 5­A is filed and it is contended
    that no such objection was filed by the appellants, the
    representation dated 20.02.2014 (Annexure P.1) filed by
    the appellants indicates that the appellants have stated
    therein that the applicants have filed objections under
    Section 5­A of the L.A. Act to the proposed acquisition.
    Though at this stage we are not in a position to determine
    the correctness of the contrary rival contentions that is
    also one of the aspects which required consideration by
    the High Court to come to a conclusion as to whether the
    benefit of the policy is available. Further the Notification
    for acquisition was issued far back as on 15.12.2006.
    The consideration pursuant to the earlier order dated
    27.03.2014 passed in CWP No. 5836/2014 was made by
    the competent authority on 10.11.2014. Even as on that
    day, admittedly the lands belonging to the appellants is
    kept vacant though the competent authority states that
    in the layout plan of Sector 36 the lands of the appellants
    is kept for institutional plot, green belt and parking area.

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The appellants on the other hand by relying on the layout
plan of sector 36 produced before this Court seek to
contend that the lands surrounding the lands of the
appellants has been released.

  1. In the backdrop of such contentions and keeping
    in view that the writ petition filed before the High Court
    was in a certiorari proceeding, it was necessary for the
    High Court to secure the records and consider as to
    whether the possession had been validly taken and
    handed over to HUDA as claimed. Further whether in the
    layout plan as referred in the order dated 11.10.2014
    impugned in the writ petition, the very item of land
    belonging to the appellants was reserved for the
    institutional plot, green belt and parking areas as
    claimed and as to whether the surrounding area had
    been developed by HUDA by forming the residential plots
    was also to be considered, though not in the nature of an
    appeal, but to satisfy itself on perusal of relevant records.
    The further contention on behalf of the appellants is that
    in respect of the very same layout this Court in the case

Page 12 of 15
of Patasi Devi Vs. State of Haryana & Ors. (2012) 9
SCC 503 has directed that the land involved therein be
released. It is no doubt seen that in the said case the
appellant who was the owner of the land which was
acquired had constructed a house and in that light there
being no document to indicate that the possession was
taken over by putting a lock, it was held that the
possession was not taken. Though that be the position it
is also indicated that the case of the appellant therein
was required to be considered in the same manner as
was done in the case of M/s Sharad Farm and Holdings
(P) Ltd. Apart from the said decision which relates to the
very same layout, the learned counsel for the appellants
has also relied on the decision in the case of Hari Ram
& Anr. vs. State of Haryana & Ors. (2010) 3 SCC 621
wherein with reference to the Policy dated 26.10.2007 it
is indicated that the similar land owners should receive a
similar consideration when representation is made for
deletion.

Page 13 of 15

  1. Having taken note of all the above aspects, the fact
    of the possession actually having been taken would
    require determination at the outset based on examination
    of records. Secondly the aspects as pointed out relating
    to the deletion of similar lands and as to whether the
    land acquired from the appellants is lying vacant and if
    so whether the appellant is similarly placed as that of the
    other land owners whose case was considered under the
    Policy for deletion are aspects which are to be examined
    by the High Court by notifying the respondents and
    permitting them to file their objection statement and also
    after securing the records and verifying the same. Since
    such exercise was not undertaken by the High Court,
    though was required in the present facts and
    circumstances it would be appropriate to set aside the
    order and restore the writ petition to the file of the High
    Court for consideration in accordance with law. Any of
    the observations contained herein are limited to the
    disposal of this appeal and the High Court shall dispose
    of the writ petition by a considered order on its own
    merits. All contentions in that regard are left open.

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  1. Accordingly, the order dated 21.10.2015 passed in
    CWP No. 22656/2015 is set aside and the petition
    bearing CWP No. 22656/2015 is restored on board of the
    High Court for the States of Punjab & Haryana at
    Chandigarh for consideration afresh after affording
    sufficient opportunity to both parties and disposal in
    accordance with law.
  2. The appeal is allowed in part with no order as to
    cost. All pending applications shall stand disposed of.

……………………….J.
(R. BANUMATHI)
……………………….J.
(A.S. BOPANNA)
New Delhi,
September 17, 2019

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