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Friday, May 26, 2017

Whether the subsequent purchasers/assignees/power of attorney holders, etc., have locus standi to file a petition for a declaration of lapse of acquisition proceedings under 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”), is the only issue arising for consideration in these cases.=Thus, the subsequent purchaser, the assignee, the successor in interest, the power of attorney, etc., are all persons who are interested in compensation/land owners/affected persons in terms of the 2013 Act and such persons are entitled to file a case for a declaration that the land acquisition proceedings have lapsed by virtue of operation of Section 24(2) of the 2013 Act. It is a declaration qua the land wherein indisputably they have an interest and they are affected by such acquisition. For such a declaration, it cannot be said that the respondents/writ petitioners do not have any locus standi.- In the peculiar facts and circumstances of these cases, the appellants are given a period of six months to exercise its liberty granted under Section 24(2) of the 2013 Act for initiation of the acquisition proceedings afresh.



                        IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA

                        CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION



                   CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6112        OF 2017
                (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No. 13551 of 2015)


GOVT. OF NCT OF DELHI                        ...  APPELLANT (S)


                                   VERSUS



MANAV DHARAM TRUST AND ANOTHER         ... RESPONDENT (S)

                                    WITH

      CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6113    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.14802 of 2015),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6115    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.15451 of 2015),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6118    OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.15454 of 2015),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6120   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.16995 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6123   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.17006 of 2015),

                    CIVIL APPEAL NO.     6128    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.17248 of 2015),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6131   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.17740 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6134  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.18480 of 2015),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6136     OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.18485 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6138  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.19204 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6140    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.19452 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6142  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.19555 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6146  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.22067 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6149   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.22069 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6152  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.22994 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6156   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.22995 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6160    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.23742 of 2015),

             CIVIL APPEAL NO.     6163                   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.24957 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6164   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.24963 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6166   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.25524 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6170  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.26493 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6173   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.26606 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6186    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.26724 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6190   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.27318 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6194   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.27485 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6197 OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.27729 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6203  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28002 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6206   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28579 of 2015),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6209    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28745 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6213    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28768 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6216   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28922 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6219  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No. 28927 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6224  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No. 28929 of 2015),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6228    OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.29537 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6233  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No. 30148 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6237  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No. 30211 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6240   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No. 30224 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6242   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30228 of 2015),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6246   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30234 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6249  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30238 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6260   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30243 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6264   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30244 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6267   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30275 of 2015),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6270    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30733 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6272  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30734 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6274  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30735 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6276   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.31250 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6279   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.31366/2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6281  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.31673 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6283  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.32614 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6285  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.32617 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6287  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.32640 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6289  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No. 32642 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6291  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.32643 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6292  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.32645 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6294  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.32647 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6296   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.33344 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6298   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.34619 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6300  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.35231 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6302  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.35243 of 2015),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6125   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.545 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6127  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.848 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6129    OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1686 of 2016),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6130   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1698 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6132  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1700 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6133   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.2070 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6135  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.2839 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6137  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.4221 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6141  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.7016 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6143    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No. 7564 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6145  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.7568 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6147   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.7609 of  2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6150  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.7735 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6153   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.7761 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6155   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8770 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6157    OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8793 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6159  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8798 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6161  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8808 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6167 OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8811 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6169  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8812 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6172  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8813 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6175   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8817 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6176    OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No. 8818 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6178   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8819 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6180   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8820 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6181  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8829 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6182   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8836 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6184   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.9061 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6185    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.9184 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6187   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.10009 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6189  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.10495 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6191  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11339 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6193  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11349 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6195   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11356 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6198   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11372 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6200   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11380/2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6202  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11383 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6205  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11448 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6207   OF 2017
                    (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11458/2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6210  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.17354 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6212   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.19966 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6214   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.19972 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6217  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.19976 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6218  OF 2017
                    (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.23083/2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6221   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.23085/2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6222   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.23095/2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6225  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.23642/2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6227   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.23646/2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6230   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.23659 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6231   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.24307 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6234   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.24313 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6236   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.24321 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6239    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.25136 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6241 OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28183 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6243   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28270 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6245   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28272 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6248   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No. 28274/2016),

                        CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6250 OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28279 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6252  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28281 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6253   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28661 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6255  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28668 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6256   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30426 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6259   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.31440 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6262  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.31442/2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6263  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.31444 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6265  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.31480/2016),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.    6266    OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.32231 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6269  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.32996 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6119    OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.35159 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6121  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.35160 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6122  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.35163 of 2016),

                        CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6139 OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.36421 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6144   OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.36792 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6148   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.37159 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6151    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.37657 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6154  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38279 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6158    OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38283 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6162  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38284 of 2016),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6168    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38286 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6171  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38292 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6174   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38295 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6177  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38300 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6179   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38303 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6183   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38354 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6188   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38358 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6192  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38364 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6196   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38367 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6199    OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38370 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6201   OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38373 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6204  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1498 of 2017),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6208  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1499 of 2017),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6211  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1639 of 2017),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6215  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1724 of 2017),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6220  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1726 of 2017),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6223   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1728 of 2017),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6226  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1729 of 2017),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6229   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1730 of 2017),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6232    OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.1731 of 2017),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6235  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.3826 of 2017),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6238  OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.6911 of 2017),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6244  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8928 of 2017),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6247  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8929 of 2017),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6251  OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.9586 of 2017),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6254   OF 2017
                  (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.9734 of 2017),

                    CIVIL APPEAL NOS.  6257-6258  OF 2017
              (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) Nos.10556-10557 of 2017)

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6261  OF 2017
                 (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11873 of 2017),

                     CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6268    OF 2017
                   (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.25536 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6271     OF 2017
        (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38374 of 2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6273   OF 2017
        (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.28305 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6275    OF 2017
       (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30167 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6278   OF 2017
       (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.30170 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.   6280   OF 2017
        (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.13381 of 2015),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6282   OF 2017
         (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.7731 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6284   OF 2017
         (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.7754 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6286   OF 2017
         (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.8762 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6288   OF 2017
       (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11404 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6290  OF 2017
          (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.11479/2016),

                      CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6293   OF 2017
        (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38296 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6295   OF 2017
        (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38299 of 2016),

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  6297  OF 2017
        (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38355 of 2016),

                        CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6299 OF 2017
        (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38360 of 2016)

                                AND

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6301   OF 2017
                (Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.38366  of 2016)



                               J U D G M E N T



KURIAN, J.:



Leave granted.


Whether  the  subsequent  purchasers/assignees/power  of  attorney  holders,
etc., have locus standi to file a petition for a  declaration  of  lapse  of
acquisition  proceedings  under  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”),  is  the
only issue arising for consideration in these cases.

The High Court has taken the view in favour of such people. Thus,  aggrieved
the NCT of Delhi and Delhi Development Authority are in appeals before  this
Court.

At the outset, we may  note  that  in  these  cases,  the  land  acquisition
proceedings have otherwise lapsed by the operation of Section 24(2)  of  the
2013 Act since either compensation was not paid or possession was not  taken
within five years prior to 01.01.2014, the date of coming into force of  the
2013 Act. Thus, the dispute is only on the locus standi.


Shri Amarendra Saran,  learned  Senior  Counsel  leading  the  arguments  on
behalf of the appellants submits that in all these cases,  the  transfer  is
in violation of  The  Delhi  Lands  (Restrictions  on  Transfer)  Act,  1972
(hereinafter referred to as “the Delhi Act, 1972”). The transfers in  favour
of the writ petitioners are hence void, and accordingly, the beneficiary  of
an illegal/void transaction is not entitled to file a case for any relief.


Reliance is placed on Sections 3,4,8, and 9 of the 1972 Act, which  read  as
follows:

1 “3. Prohibition on transfer of lands acquired by Central Government –


No person shall purport to  transfer  by  sale,  mortgage,  gift,  lease  or
otherwise any land or part thereof situated in the Union territory of  Delhi
which  has  been  acquired  by  the  Central  Government  under   the   Land
Acquisition Act, 1984 or under any other law providing  for  acquisition  of
land for a public purpose.


2 4. Regulation on transfer  of  lands  in  relation  to  which  acquisition
proceedings have been initiated.


No person shall, except with the  previous  permission  in  writing  of  the
competent authority, transfer or purport  to  transfer  by  sale,  mortgage,
gift, lease or otherwise any land or part  thereof  situated  in  the  Union
territory of Delhi, which is proposed to be acquired in connection with  the
Scheme and in relation to which a declaration to the effect that  such  land
or part thereof is needed for a public  purpose  having  been  made  by  the
Central Government under section 6 of the Land Acquisition  Act,  1894,  the
Central Government has not withdrawn from the acquisition under  section  48
of that Act.


                xxx                         xxx                   xxx


3 8. Restrictions on registration of transfers of land –


Notwithstanding any thing contained in any other law for the time  being  in
force, where any document required to be registered under the provisions  of
clause  (a)  to  clause  (e)  of  sub-section  (1)  of  section  17  of  the
Registration Act, 1908, purports to transfer by sale, mortgage, gift,  lease
or otherwise any  land  or  part  thereof  referred  to  in  section  4,  no
registering officer  appointed  under  that  Act  shall  register  any  such
document unless the transferor produces before such  registering  officer  a
permission in writing of the competent authority for such transfer.


4 9. Penalty –

If any person contravenes the provisions of  section  3  or  section  4,  he
shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend  to  three
years or with fine or with both.”


Learned Senior Counsel and other learned Counsel further submitted that  the
issue is no more res integra in view of  the  following  decisions  of  this
Court:
(i)   U.P. Jal Nigam, Lucknow Through Its  Chairman  and  another  v.  Kalra
Properties (P) Ltd., Lucknow and others[1],

(ii)  Sneh Prabha (Smt.) and others v. State of U.P. and another[2],

(iii) Meera Sahni v. Lieutenant Governor of Delhi and others[3],

(iv)   V.  Chandrasekaran  and  another  v.   Administrative   Officer   and
others[4],

(v)    Rajasthan    State    Industrial    Development    and     Investment
Corporation v.  Subhash  Sindhi  Cooperative  Housing  Society,  Jaipur  and
others[5] and


U.P. Jal Nigam, Lucknow (supra), is a case where this Court  considered  the
consequences of a transfer of the land after issuance of notification  under
Section 4(1) of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 (hereinafter referred  to  as
“the 1894 Act”) in the  State  of  Uttar  Pradesh.  It  was  held  that  any
encumbrances created  by  the  owner  after  Section  4(1)  Notification  is
published, does not bind the  Government  and  such  a  purchaser  does  not
acquire any title to  the  property.  Therefore,  such  a  purchaser  cannot
challenge the validity of the notification or the regularity of the  process
of taking possession of the land. To quote paragraph-3:

“3. …  It is settled law that after the notification under Section  4(1)  is
published in the Gazette any encumbrance created by the owner does not  bind
the Government  and  the  purchaser  does  not  acquire  any  title  to  the
property. In this case, notification under Section 4(1) was published on 24-
3-1973, possession of the land admittedly was taken on 5-7-1973 and  pumping
station house was constructed. No doubt, declaration  under  Section  6  was
published later on  8-7-1973.  Admittedly  power  under  Section  17(4)  was
exercised dispensing with the enquiry under Section 5-A and  on  service  of
the notice under Section 9 possession was taken, since  urgency  was  acute,
viz., pumping station house was to be constructed to drain out flood  water.
Consequently, the land stood vested in the State under  Section  17(2)  free
from all encumbrances. It is further settled law  that  once  possession  is
taken, by operation of Section 17(2), the land vests in the State free  from
all encumbrances unless a notification under Section 48(1) is  published  in
the Gazette withdrawing from the acquisition. Section 11-A,  as  amended  by
Act 68 of 1984, therefore, does not  apply  and  the  acquisition  does  not
lapse. The  notification  under  Section  4(1)  and  the  declaration  under
Section 6, therefore, remain valid. There is no other  provision  under  the
Act  to  have  the  acquired  land  divested,  unless,  as  stated  earlier,
notification under  Section  48(1)  was  published  and  the  possession  is
surrendered pursuant  thereto.  That  apart,  since  M/s  Kalra  Properties,
respondent had purchased the land after the notification under Section  4(1)
was published, its sale is void against the State and it acquired no  right,
title or interest in the land. Consequently,  it  is  settled  law  that  it
cannot challenge the validity of  the  notification  or  the  regularity  in
taking possession of the land before publication of  the  declaration  under
Section 6 was published.”

In Sneh  Prabha  (supra),  this  Court  reiterated  the  position  that  any
alienation of land after the publication of the notification  under  Section
4(1) of the 1894 Act does not bind the Government or the  beneficiary  under
the acquisition. It has also been held that once the possession of the  land
is taken under Section 16 of the Act, the land  vests  with  the  Government
free from  all  encumbrances  and  the  absolute  title  is  vested  in  the
Government. To quote from                 paragraph-5:

“5.  …  It  is  settled  law  that  any  person  who  purchases  land  after
publication of the notification under Section 4(1), does so at  his/her  own
peril. The object of publication of the notification under Section  4(1)  is
notice to everyone that the land is needed or is likely  to  be  needed  for
public purpose and the acquisition proceedings point out  an  impediment  to
anyone  to  encumber  the  land  acquired  thereunder.  It  authorises   the
designated  officer  to  enter  upon  the  land  to  do  preliminaries  etc.
Therefore, any alienation of land after the publication of the  notification
under Section 4(1) does not bind the Government  or  the  beneficiary  under
the acquisition. On taking possession of the land, all  rights,  titles  and
interests in land stand vested in the State, under Section 16  of  the  Act,
free from all encumbrances  and  thereby  absolute  title  in  the  land  is
acquired thereunder. If any  subsequent  purchaser  acquires  land,  his/her
only right would be subject to the provisions of the Act and/or  to  receive
compensation for the land. In a recent judgment,  this  Court  in  Union  of
India v. Shivkumar Bhargava considered  the  controversy  and  held  that  a
person who purchases land subsequent to the notification is not entitled  to
alternative site. It is seen that the Land Policy expressly  conferred  that
right only on that person whose land  was  acquired.  In  other  words,  the
person must be the owner of the land  on  the  date  on  which  notification
under Section 4(1) was published. By necessary implication,  the  subsequent
purchaser was elbowed out from the policy  and  became  disentitled  to  the
benefit of the Land Policy.”


In Meera Sahni (supra), this Court  dealt  with  the  provisions  under  the
Delhi Act, 1972. After referring to U.P. Jal Nigam  and  Sneh  Prabha  cases
(supra), in paragraph-21 of the judgment, it was held that  ...  “it  is  by
now well settled law that under the Land  Acquisition  Act,  the  subsequent
purchaser cannot challenge the acquisition proceedings and that he would  be
only entitled to get the compensation”.

In V. Chandrasekaran (supra), this Court again addressed  the  issue  as  to
whether the subsequent purchaser can challenge the acquisition  proceedings.
After referring to some of the earlier judgments, at paragraph-18,  the  law
has been laid down as follows:

“18. In view of the above, the law on the issue can  be  summarised  to  the
effect that a person who purchases land subsequent  to  the  issuance  of  a
Section 4 notification with respect to it, is  not  competent  to  challenge
the validity of the acquisition proceedings on any  ground  whatsoever,  for
the reason that the sale deed executed in his favour does  not  confer  upon
him, any title and at the most he can claim compensation  on  the  basis  of
his vendor’s title.”

In  Rajasthan  State  Industrial  Development  and  Investment   Corporation
(supra),  this  Court  held  that  such  transactions  after  initiation  of
acquisition proceedings would be void  and  would  not  be  binding  on  the
Government. To quote paragraph-13:

“13. There can be no quarrel with respect to the settled  legal  proposition
that a purchaser, subsequent to the issuance of a Section 4 notification  in
respect of the land, cannot challenge the acquisition proceedings,  and  can
only claim compensation as the sale transaction in such a situation is  void
qua the Government. Any such  encumbrance  created  by  the  owner,  or  any
transfer of the land in question, that is made after the issuance of such  a
notification, would be deemed to be void and would not  be  binding  on  the
Government. ...”

On behalf of  the  respondents,  it  has  been  mainly  contended  that  the
subsequent purchasers are persons interested and they have  every  right  to
file a case to protect their interests. It was also pointed out  that  under
the Delhi Act, 1972, there is  no  absolute  bar  on  transfer  since  under
Section 5, the transfer was possible with the permission  of  the  Competent
Authority and that under Section 5, the Competent  Authority  cannot  refuse
to grant the permission except on any of the grounds under  sub-Section  (3)
of Section 5. To quote Section 5:

5 “5. Application for grant of permission for transfer under section 4 –


           6 xxxx                 xxxx       xxxx             xxxx


(3) The competent  authority  shall  not  refuse  to  grant  the  permission
applied for under this section except  on  one  or  more  of  the  following
grounds, namely:-


(i) That the land is needed or is likely to  be  needed  for  the  effective
implementation of the Scheme;


(ii) That the land is needed or is likely to  be  needed  for  securing  the
objects of the Delhi Development Authority referred to in section 6  of  the
Development Act;


(iii) That the land is needed or is likely to be needed for any  development
within the meaning of clause (d) of section 2 of the Development Act or  for
such things as public building and other public works and utilities,  roads,
housing,  recreation,  industry,  business,  markets,  schools   and   other
educational  institutions,  hospitals  and  public  open  spaces  and  other
categories of public uses.”




It was also contended that the 2013 Act has not  exempted  the  acquisitions
under The Delhi Development Act, 1957, and for that matter  the  Delhi  Act,
1972 under the Fourth Schedule to Section 105.

Yet another contention was that in all these cases, the  challenge  was  not
to the acquisition proceedings but for a declaration under Section 24(2)  of
the 2013 Act to  the  effect  that  by  virtue  of  operation  of  the  said
provision, the acquisition proceedings have lapsed.

“Person interested”, under the 1894 Act, is defined under  Section  3(b)  of
the Act, which reads as follows:

“3(b) the expression “person interested” includes all  persons  claiming  an
interest in compensation to be made on account of the  acquisition  of  land
under this Act; and a person shall be deemed to be interested in land if  he
is interested in an easement affecting the land;”


Under the 2013 Act, “person interested” has been given a much wider  meaning
under Section 3(x). To quote:
“3(x).     “person interested” means—

all persons claiming an interest in compensation to be made  on  account  of
the acquisition of land under this Act;

 the Scheduled Tribes and other traditional forest dwellers, who  have  lost
any  forest  rights  recognised  under  the  Scheduled  Tribes   and   Other
Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006;

a person interested in an easement affecting the land;

persons having tenancy rights under the relevant State laws including share-
croppers by whatever name they may be called; and

any person whose primary source of livelihood  is  likely  to  be  adversely
affected;”



Thus, under the 2013 Act, all persons claiming interest in  compensation  to
be paid on account of the acquisition  of  land  under  the  2013  Act,  are
persons interested.  Among  others,  any  person  whose  primary  source  of
livelihood is likely to be adversely affected is also a person interested.


“Land owner” under the 2013 Act is defined under Section 3(r),  which  reads
as follows:


“3(r)      “land owner” includes any person,—

whose name is recorded as  the  owner  of  the  land  or  building  or  part
thereof, in the records of the authority concerned; or

any person who is granted forest  rights  under  the  Scheduled  Tribes  and
Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights)  Act,  2006
or under any other law for the time being in force; or

who is entitled to be granted Patta rights on the land under any law of  the
State including assigned lands; or

any person who has been declared as  such  by  an  order  of  the  court  or
Authority;


Thus, among others, a person whose name is recorded as owner of the land  or
building or part thereof in the records of the  Authority  concerned,  is  a
land owner.

“Affected family” has been defined in the  2013  Act   under  Section   3(c)
which reads as follows :-

“3(c) ?affected family? includes—
  a family whose land or other immovable property has been acquired;
   a family which does not own any land but a  member  or  members  of  such
family may be agricultural labourers, tenants including any form of  tenancy
or holding of usufruct right, share-croppers  or  artisans  or  who  may  be
working in the affected area for three years prior  to  the  acquisition  of
the  land,  whose  primary  source  of  livelihood  stand  affected  by  the
acquisition of land;
   the Scheduled Tribes and other traditional forest dwellers who have  lost
any of their forest rights recognised under the Scheduled Tribes  and  Other
Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006  (2  of
2007) due to acquisition of land;
   family whose primary source of livelihood for three years  prior  to  the
acquisition of the  land  is  dependent  on  forests  or  water  bodies  and
includes gatherers of forest produce, hunters, fisher folk and  boatmen  and
such livelihood is affected due to acquisition of land;
   a member  of  the  family  who  has  been  assigned  land  by  the  State
Government or the Central Government under any of its schemes and such  land
is under acquisition;
  a family residing on any land in  the  urban  areas  for  preceding  three
years or more prior to the acquisition of the land or whose  primary  source
of livelihood for three years prior  to  the  acquisition  of  the  land  is
affected by the acquisition of such land;”

This definition of  affected  family  also  indicates  that  even  a  family
residing in the lands sought to be acquired, be it an owner or  not,  is  an
affected family, and if a family or a person is  affected,  necessarily,  he
has a right to approach the Court to protect his interests.

It is also to be specifically noted that the  challenge  made  by  the  writ
petitioners in the Miscellaneous Application filed by them  is  not  to  the
acquisition or to the regularity of the  process  of  acquisition  including
the taking of possession. Their only prayer is for a  declaration  that  the
proceedings qua the land referred to  in  the  Application  have  lapsed  by
virtue of the operation of Section 24(2) of the 2013 Act.

All the decisions cited by the learned  Senior  Counsel  appearing  for  the
appellants,  no  doubt,  have  categorically  held   that   the   subsequent
purchasers  do  not  have  locus  standi  to   challenge   the   acquisition
proceedings.  But  in  the  present  case,  the  challenge  is  not  to  the
acquisition proceeding; it is only for a declaration  that  the  acquisition
proceedings have lapsed in view of the operation of  Section  24(2)  of  the
2013 Act, and therefore, the ratio in those  cases  has  no  application  to
these cases.

It is one thing to say  that  there  is  a  challenge  to  the  legality  or
propriety or validity of the acquisition proceedings and yet  another  thing
to say that  by  virtue  of  operation  of  a  subsequent  legislation,  the
acquisition proceedings have lapsed.

In  all  the  decisions  cited  by  the  learned  Senior  Counsel  for   the
appellants, which we have referred to above, this Court  has  protected  the
rights of the subsequent purchaser to claim  compensation,  being  a  person
interested in the compensation, despite holding  that  they  have  no  locus
standi to challenge the acquisition proceedings.

The 2013 Act has made a sea change in the approach  on  the  acquisition  of
land and compensation thereof. The only lapse under the 1894 Act  was  under
Section 11A where what would lapse is the ... “entire  proceedings  for  the
acquisition of land” whereas under Section 24(2) of the 2013 Act, what  gets
lapsed is the land acquisition proceedings  initiated  under  the  1894  Act
which has culminated in passing of an  award  under  Section  11  but  where
either possession was not taken or compensation was  not  paid  within  five
years prior to 01.01.2014. In other words, the land acquisition  proceedings
contemplated under Section 24(2)  of  the  2013  Act  would  take  in  both,
payment of compensation and  taking  of  possession  within  the  five  year
period prior to 01.01.2014. If either of them is not satisfied,  the  entire
land acquisition proceedings would lapse under the  deeming  provision.  The
impact of deemed lapse under Section 24(2) is that pervasive. To quote  R.F.
Nariman, J. in Delhi Development Authority v. Sukbhir Singh  and  others[6].
To quote:

“... As is well settled, a deeming fiction is enacted  so  that  a  putative
state of affairs must be imagined, the mind not being allowed to  boggle  at
the logical consequence of such putative  state  of  affairs  ...  In  fact,
Section 24(2) uses the  expression  “deemed  to  have  lapsed”  because  the
Legislature was cognisant of the fact that, in cases where compensation  has
not been paid, and physical possession handed over to the State/vesting  has
taken place, after which land acquisition proceedings could be said to  have
been ended. ...” (Paragraph-27).


      Thus, on account of the lapse, the encumbrance created  in  favour  of
the State comes to an end, and resultantly, the impediment to  encumber  the
land also comes to an end. Even, according to the appellants, the  transfers
were illegal and void for the reason that there was an  impediment  for  the
transfer. Once the acquisition proceedings lapse, all impediments  cease  to
exist.

As we have already noted above, the  whole  face  of  land  acquisition  has
changed by the 2013 Act.  Section 105 of the 2013 Act has provided that  the
provisions of the Act shall not apply to the  enactments  specified  in  the
Fourth Schedule. So far, only 13 Acts have been notified  under  the  Fourth
Schedule. Neither The Delhi  Development  Act,  1957  nor  The  Delhi  Lands
(Restrictions on Transfers) Act, 1972 is included in the Fourth Schedule.

The main purpose of the 2013 Act is clearly stated  in  the  preamble  which
reads as follows :-

“An Act  to  ensure,  in  consultation  with  institutions  of  local  self-
government and Gram Sabhas established under  the  Constitution,  a  humane,
participative, informed and transparent process  for  land  acquisition  for
industrialisation, development of essential infrastructural  facilities  and
urbanisation with the least disturbance to the owners of the land and  other
affected families and provide just and fair  compensation  to  the  affected
families whose land has been acquired or proposed  to  be  acquired  or  are
affected by such acquisition and make adequate provisions for such  affected
persons for their rehabilitation and resettlement and for ensuring that  the
cumulative  outcome  of  compulsory  acquisition  should  be  that  affected
persons become partners in development leading to an  improvement  in  their
post acquisition social  and  economic  status  and  for  matters  connected
therewith or incidental thereto.”


There is a clear indication that the Act proposes to  protect  the  interest
of those persons, among others who are  affected  by  the  acquisition.  The
subsequent purchasers/successors, etc., in the  cases  before  us,  are  all
people affected by the acquisition, and therefore, also  they  are  entitled
to seek a declaration on lapse under the 2013 Act.


The High Court of Karnataka at  Bengaluru  in  Suryaprakash  and  others  v.
State of Karnataka and others[7] has considered a  situation  of  lapse  and
locus standi of the subsequent purchaser to  file  a  writ  petition  for  a
declaration on lapse, though not under Section 24(2) of  the  2013  Act.  At
paragraph-16, it has been held:


“16. … the principle that  transferee  of  land  after  the  publication  of
preliminary notification cannot maintain a  writ  petition  challenging  the
acquisition, cannot be made applicable  to  a  case  where  the  acquisition
itself has been abandoned and has stood lapsed due  to  efflux  of  time  on
account  of  the  omission  and  inaction  on  the  part  of  the  acquiring
authority, particularly because, it is because of the lapse of time and  the
abandonment of the acquisition, right accrues to the original owner to  deal
with his property including by way  of  the  sale  and  the  purchaser  will
acquire right to protect his interest. Hence, the judgment in  the  case  of
Rajasthan  State  Industrial  Development  and  Investment  Corporation   v.
Subhash Sindhi Cooperative Housing Society, Jaipur and others (2013)  5  SCC
427, will have no application to the facts of the present case.”


      We are of the view that this decision, in principle, applies to the
facts of these appeals as well.


Thus, the subsequent purchaser, the assignee,  the  successor  in  interest,
the power  of  attorney,  etc.,  are  all  persons  who  are  interested  in
compensation/land owners/affected persons in terms of the 2013 Act and  such
persons are entitled to  file  a  case  for  a  declaration  that  the  land
acquisition proceedings have lapsed by virtue of operation of Section  24(2)
of the 2013 Act. It is a declaration qua the land wherein indisputably  they
have an interest and they are affected  by  such  acquisition.  For  such  a
declaration, it cannot be said that the respondents/writ petitioners do  not
have any locus standi.

Thus, we do not find any merit in these appeals  and  they  are  accordingly
dismissed. All Interlocutory Applications for Impleadment and  Intervention,
other than those by Legal Representatives, are also  rejected.  Applications
for Impleadment of Legal Representatives are  allowed.  There  shall  be  no
order as to costs.

In the peculiar facts and circumstances of these cases, the  appellants  are
given a period of six months to exercise its liberty granted  under  Section
24(2) of the 2013 Act for initiation of the acquisition proceedings afresh.

We make it clear that we have not gone into the inter  se  disputes  between
the parties in some cases or other claims regarding the ownership.
                                                   .......................J.
                                                             (KURIAN JOSEPH)



                                                                 .……………………J.
                 (R. BANUMATHI)

New Delhi;
May 4, 2017.


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[1]















       (1996) 3 SCC 124
[2]    (1996) 7 SCC 426
[3]    (2008) 9 SCC 177
[4]    (2012) 12 SCC 133
[5]    (2013) 5 SCC 427
[6]    (2016) 8 SCALE 655
[7]    MANU/KA/3319/2016 (Writ Petition No. 10286-291 of  2014,  decided  on
05.12.2016).


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                                                                  REPORTABLE





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