CASE NO.: Special Leave Petition (civil) 1662 of 2000 PETITIONER: SPECIAL OFFICER AND COMPETENT AUTHORITY U.L.C. AND ANR. RESPONDENT: P.S. RAO DATE OF JUDGMENT: 28/08/2000 BENCH: M. JAGANNADHA RAO & DORAISWAMY RAJU JUDGMENT:
2000 Supp(2) SCR 708
The following Order of the Court was delivered :
In the order passed by this Court on 17.1.2000 dismissing the SLP by a
reasoned order, this Court held that, notwithstanding the fact that a
vesting order was passed under the provisions of the (Urban Land Ceiling &
Regula-tion) Act, 1976, it would be open to the owner of the land whose
land had so vested, to seek exemption under the provisions of the Act. In
the facts of that case, the G.O. issued by the Government granting
exemption was issued on 31.10.88 subsequent to the order of vesting on
5.10.87 notice for surrender was issued by the Government on 16.4.88 and
G.O. Granting exemption was issued on 31.10.1988 Learned Single Judge and
the Division Bench held that the G.O. could be taken advantage of by the
respondent even though vesting order had been passed. This order was upheld
by this Court against the judgment dated 17.1.2000 mentioned above.
The present application for clarification has been filed by the State of
Andhra Pradesh for clarifying the position as to whether if possession had
not been taken, pursuant to the order of vesting, the owner of the land had
a right to seek exemption from the provisions of the Act under Section 20
or under Section 10, by virtue of the G.O. issued by the Government.
It will be noticed that in order of the Division Bench of the High Court,
this position has been clearly explained. The Bench said that “the question
of retrospectivity of the exemption order does not really arise for the
reason that in the proceedings under Chapter III of the Act are still
pending, may be set the final stage”. The Division Bench further observed
“Be that as it may, in the present case, the exemption order which is of
general nature is under Section 20(1 )(a), and it was issued after the
vesting order under Sec. 10(3) of the Act was published. That the exemption
could be granted even after vesting, being the proposition definitely laid
down by the Supreme Court and this Court, there is no reason why such
exemption shall not have the effect of taking the land out of the purview
of the Act so long as the proceedings under the Chapter III have not been
concluded in their entirety”.
The Division Bench further observed as follows :
“This is yet another consideration, which weighs with the Court to hold
that the exemption granted under G.O. 733 will be attracted to any excess
land in respect of which at least the proceedings under Chapter III have
not yet come to an end.”
We fully endorse the view expressed by the Division Bench of the High Court
as extracted above.
We are, however, not deciding a situation where possession has been taken
over and where third party rights have not intervened.
With the above clarification, the I.A. is disposed of.