M/S Clear Water & Anr vs Union Of India & Ors on 13 April, 2015

Delhi High Court
M/S Clear Water & Anr vs Union Of India & Ors on 13 April, 2015
Author: Badar Durrez Ahmed

%                                      Judgment delivered on: 13.04.2015

+       WP(C) No. 8350/2014 & CM 19345/2014

M/S CLEAR WATER & ANR.                                       .... Petitioners

UNION OF INDIA & ORS.                                        ..... Respondents

Advocates who appeared in this case:

For the Petitioners         : Mr Sumeer Sodhi with Mr Arjun Nanda, Mr Mohit
For the Respondent No.1     : Mr Abhay Prakash Sahay.
For the Respondent DDA       :Mr Pawan Mathur with Mr Himanshu Gupta.
For the Respondent Nos. 3&4 : Mr Yeeshu Jain with Ms Jyoti Tyagi.




1. The counter affidavit on behalf of respondent nos. 3 & 4 is handed

over by Mr Yeeshu Jain. The same is taken on record. The learned

counsel for the petitioners does not wish to file any rejoinder affidavit

inasmuch as he would be relying on the averments already contained in

the writ petition.

W.P.(C) No. 8350/2014 Page 1 of 5

2. The petitioners seek the benefit of Section 24(2) of the Right to

Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation

and Resettlement Act, 2013 (hereinafter referred to as „the 2013 Act‟)

which came into effect on 01.01.2014. A declaration is sought to the

effect that the acquisition proceeding initiated under the Land Acquisition

Act, 1894 (hereinafter referred to as „the 1894 Act‟) in respect of which

Award No. 14/87-88 dated 26.05.1987 was made, inter alia, in respect of

the petitioners‟ land comprised in Khasra Nos. 777/2 (3-10), 781/1-2/2

(4-03) measuring 7 bighas and 13 biswas in all in village Satbari shall be

deemed to have lapsed.

3. The stand of the respondents is that physical possession of the said

land was taken on 14.07.1987. This is disputed by the petitioners, who

claim to be in actual physical possession of the subject land.

4. In so far as the question of compensation is concerned, the same

has not been paid to the petitioners but according to the respondents, the

same has been deposited in the treasury. Therefore, they seek to invoke

the second Proviso to Section 24(2) of the 2013 Act, which was

introduced by virtue of the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency

W.P.(C) No. 8350/2014 Page 2 of 5
in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (Amendment)

Ordinance, 2015 (hereinafter referred to as “the said Ordinance”).

5. So far as the applicability of the second Proviso to Section 24(2) of

the 2013 Act is concerned, the same cannot be relied upon by the

respondents inasmuch as a similar provision introduced by the preceding

ordinance of 2014 has been held to be prospective in nature and does not

take away vested rights. This has so been held by the Supreme Court in

M/s Radiance Fincap (P) Ltd. & Ors. Vs. Union of India & Ors.

decided on 12.01.2015 in Civil Appeal No. 4283/2011 wherein the

Supreme Court held as under:-

“The right conferred to the land holders/owners of the
acquired land under Section 24(2) of the Act is the
statutory right and, therefore, the said right cannot be
taken away by an Ordinance by inserting proviso to the
abovesaid sub-section without giving retrospective effect
to the same.”

6. The same has been reinforced by the Supreme Court in Karnail

Kaur & Ors. Vs. State of Punjab & Ors. Civil Appeal No. 7424/2013

decided on 22.01.2015.

W.P.(C) No. 8350/2014 Page 3 of 5

7. From the above decisions, it is evident that the said Ordinance is

prospective in nature and the rights created in favour of the petitioners as

on 01.01.2014 by virtue of the 2013 Act are undisturbed by the second

Proviso to Section 24(2) of the 2013 Act, which has been introduced by

the said Ordinance.

8. Without going into the controversy with regard to the physical

possession, this much is clear that the Award was made more than five

years prior to the commencement of the 2013 Act and the compensation

has also not been paid to the petitioners, but has only been deposited in

the treasury, which does not amount to payment of compensation as

interpreted by the Supreme Court in Pune Municipal Corporation and

Anr v. Harakchand Misirimal Solanki and Ors: (2014) 3 SCC 183.

9. All the necessary ingredients for the application of Section 24(2) of

the 2013 Act as interpreted by the Supreme Court and this Court in the

following cases stand satisfied:-

(1) Union of India and Ors v. Shiv Raj and Ors: (2014) 6
SCC 564;

(2) Sree Balaji Nagar Residential Association v. State of
Tamil Nadu and Ors: Civil Appeal No. 8700/2013
decided on 10.09.2014;

W.P.(C) No. 8350/2014 Page 4 of 5

(3) Surender Singh v. Union of India & Others: WP(C)
2294/2014 decided on 12.09.2014 by this Court; and

(4) Girish Chhabra v. Lt. Governor of Delhi and Ors:

WP(C) 2759/2014 decided on 12.09.2014 by this Court.

10. As a result, the petitioners are entitled to a declaration that the said

acquisition proceedings initiated under the 1894 Act in respect of the

subject land are deemed to have lapsed. It is so declared.

11. The writ petition is allowed to the aforesaid extent. There shall be

no order as to costs.


APRIL 13, 2015.


W.P.(C) No. 8350/2014 Page 5 of 5


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