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Udai Ram Sharma Versus U.O.I.

1968 AIR 1138, 1968 (3) SCR 41 - W.P.(C) 114 OF 1966 - Dated:- 7-2-1968 - Wanchoo K.N., Bachawat R.S., Shelat J.M., Mitter G.K. And Vaidyialingam C.A., JJ. Ramamurthi, Vineet Kumar and Shyamala Pappu, Niren De, Solicitor-General, B. R. L. lyengar and R. N. Sachthey for respondents JUDGMENT: Shelat J.M. And. Mitter G.K., Ms is a group of five Writ Petitions under Art. 32 of the Constitution challenging in four cases the validity of land acquisition proceedings started by a notification dated Nove .....

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cation of the declaration under, s. 6 having been made on March 18, 1966. in Writ Petition No. 216 of 1966 there are 71 petitioners who also own lands in the same village. Their complaint is based on the same notification under s. 4 and a notification dated July 12, 1966 under s. 6 of the Act. In Writ Petition No. 223 of 1966 the single petitioner is Pandit Lila Ram who owned lands in villages Masjid Moth, Raipur Khurd and Shahpur Jat respectively within the union territory of Delhi. His complai .....

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7 the sole petitioner is one Rai Bahadur Sohan Lal who owned land in village Kilokri on the Delhi-Mathura Road within the union territory of Delhi. His grievance is against s. 4 notification dated November 13, 1959, a notification dated July 27, 1961 under s. 6 of the Act and an award dated February 16, 1962. Although there are some distinctive features in some of the petitions to be mentioned later, the common attack is based on the judgment of this Court delivered on February 9, 1966 in State .....

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ands in village Chhawani were acquired in the year 1956. In August 1960 a fresh notification under s. 6 of the Act was issued proposing to acquire, Ac. 486-17 of land in the said village. Some owners of the land in the village who were affected by the notification filed a writ petition challenging the validity of the notification under s. 6. The High Court accepted their contention whereupon the State of Madhya Pradesh came up to this Court in appeal. It was held by this Court that ss. 4, 5-A an .....

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ate conclusion was that there could be no successive notifications under s. 6 with respect to land in a locality specified in one notification under s. 4(1) and in the result, the appeal of the State was dismissed. The present Writ Petitions were all filed after the said judgment of this Court. The omnibus notification under s. 4 in four of these cases dated November 13, 1959 covered an area of Ac. 34,070-00 marked as blocks Nos. A to T and X in a map enclosed with the notification excepting the .....

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the public expense for a public purpose, namely, the planned development of Delhi. As already noted, there were several notifications under s. 6 made from time to time, the earliest one in this series of petitions being dated June 14, 1961. It is clear that on the basis of the judgment of this Court the validity of the notifications under s. 6 of the Act after the first of the series could not be upheld in A court of law. On January 20, 1967 an Ordinance was promulgated by the President of Indi .....

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to amend s. 6 of the principal Act by enabling different declarations to be made from time to time in respect of different parcels of land covered by the same notification under s. 4. Section 5 of the Ordinance purported to validate all acquisitions of land made or purporting to have been made under the principal Act before the commencement of the Ordinance, notwithstanding any judgment, decree or order of any court to the contrary. On April 12, 1967 Parliament passed an Act (Act 13 of 1967) st .....

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or different reports had been made under s. 5-A sub-s. (2). Clause (ii) of s. 3 inserted a new proviso to s. 6(1) reading.: "Provided that no declaration in respect of any particular land covered by a notification under section 4, sub-section (1), published after the commencement of the Land Acquisition (Amendment and Validation) Ordinance, 1967, shall be made after the expiry of three years from the date of such publication." As a. good deal of argument turns on the interpretation of .....

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e deemed to be invalid or ever to have become invalid merely on the ground- (i) that one or more Collectors have performed the functions of Collector under the principal Act in respect of the land covered by the same notification under sub-section (1) of section 4 of the principal Act; (ii)that one or more reports have been made under subsection (2) of section 5-A of the principal Act, whe- ther in respect of the entire land, or different parcels thereof, covered by the same notification under s .....

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commencement and no such acquisition and no action taken or thing done (including any order made, agreement entered into or notification published), whether before or after such commencement, in connection with such acquisition shall be deemed to be invalid merely on the grounds referred to in clause. (a) or any of them. (2) Notwithstanding anything contained in clause (b) of sub-section (1), no declaration under section 6 of the principal Act in respect of any land which has been notified befor .....

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y declaration under section 6 of the principal Act, whether made before or after such commencement, and such declaration is or has been made after the expiry of three years from the date of publication of such notification, there shall be paid simple interest, calculated at the rate of six per cent per annum on the market value of such land, as determined under section 23 of the principal Act, from the date of expiry of the said period of three years to the date of tender of payment of compensat .....

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the Land Acquisition, (Amendment and Validation) Ordinance, 1967 and further provided that notwithstanding such repeal, anything done or any action taken under the principal Act as amended by the said Ordinance shall be deemed to have been done or taken under the principal Act as amended by,_this Act as it this Act had come into force on the 20th January, 1967. The petitions before us were amended by leave of the Court so that the Validation Act of 1967 could. be challenged. Mr. C. B. Agarwala .....

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s under s. 4 thereby allowing compensation to be paid on the basis of the dead notification under s. 4. It was argued that once a notification under s. 4 was exhausted Government had to make a fresh one under the said section; as a result thereof compensation had to be assessed on a different basis altogether. (3) The Validation Act violated Art. 14 of the Constitution in various ways - (a) It- made discrimination inasmuch as a notification under-s. 4 made before the commencement of the Ordinanc .....

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uch longer period of time might elapse between a date of declaration under s. 6 and a notification under s. 4 issued prior to the date of the Ordinance. (b) If a notification under s. 4 was made after the date of the Ordinance, compensation had to be paid on the basis of such notification but if a notification had been made under s. 4 of the Act before the date of the Ordinance, compensation would be awarded on the basis, of the exhausted notification under s. 4 however much time might have elap .....

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e of the Ordinance and such notification might be issued after every period of three years in any case where acquistion was not completed. In such cases, owners of land would be substantially benefited by the new notification under s. 4. But if a notification had been made before the date of the Ordinance, the owner of the land would receive compensation based on the old notification although a period much longer than three years might elapse between the date of the notification under s. 4 and a .....

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that there was no law which purported to validate retrospectively any but the first report made under s. 5-A of the principal Act or any but the first declaration issued under S. 6 of the Act and consequently there was no legal basis for the validation of such past acts by the operation of s.-4 of the Amending Act. It was therefore argued that the defect in the principal Act as pointed out by this Court in V. P. Sharma s case([1966] 3 S.C.R. 557) was not removed by s. 4 of the Amending Act. It w .....

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6 was not resusciated by any provision ,of the Amending Act. On the second point, the broad contention urged was that the amendment was hit by Art. 31(2) of the Constitution inasmuch as its whole purpose was to avoid payment of enhanced compensation which would be necessitated if a fresh notification had to be issued under s. 4. The notification dated November 13, 1959 having spent itself, a fresh one in the normal course would have to be issued and compensation be paid not on the basis of valua .....

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acquisition sought to be made by a subsequent declaration under S. 6. In such circumstances, the ratio of a number of decisions of this Court starting from that of The State of West Bengal v. Mrs. Bela Banerjee([1954] S.C.R. 558.) to a recent judgment in Union of India v.Kamalabai Harjivandas Parekh and others(C.A. 1564/1966 decided on 7-9-1967) would apply. It is not necessary to examine all these decisions in detail. The notable decisions to which reference was made at some length are P. V. M .....

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ted was being deprived of compensation, i.e., the just equivalent of the property acquired. The point sought to be made was that the notification of November 13, 1959, having exhausted itself, the value of the property at or about that date would be illusory compensation in violation of Art. 31(2) in respect of a declaration under S. 6 made after the first one of the series. Reference was made to proceedings for compulsory acquisition of land in England under the Lands Clauses Acts under which & .....

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subject to his being paid compensation, but until the price is ascertained the land remains the property of the l andowner. Both parties have the right to have the price ascertained and the purchase completed in manner provided by the Lands Clauses Acts." It was said that the English procedure ensured the payment of just equivalent of the property to the person who was deprived of it and that issue of a declaration under s. 6 made years after the notification under s. 4 the date of which a .....

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formation in the hands of the department, and should at the same time avail himself of all that is offered at the enquiry, his ultimate duty being not to conclude the owner by his so-called award, but to fix the sum, which in Ms best judgment is the value and should be offered." On the question of violation of Art. 14 of the Constitution, besides the general argument already referred to, it was urged that in Writ Petition No. 85 of 1967 there was a further point as to discrimination. The fa .....

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. On June 18, 1956 he was informed by the Delhi Development Provisional Authority that the, final lay out plan had been approved by the said authority. In September 1957 the said authority demanded from the petitioner a security for ₹ 12,850-25 as a guarantee for carrying out the development of the colony in accordance with the approved standards and this sum was duly deposited by the petitioner. On September 15, 1958 the petitioner submitted service plans in respect of his colony and thes .....

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oner duly filed his objections under s. 5-A of the Act. By a notification dated July 1, 1960 published by the Delhi Administration the Chief Commissioner, Delhi, withdrew the land of 16 colonies from the acquisition out of the area covered by the notification of November 13, 1959 on the ground that their lay out plan had been sanctioned by the Delhi Municipal Corporation and as per general decision of the Standing Committee, Delhi Municipal Corporation, the petitioner was asked by the Town Plann .....

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planned development of Delhi. The petitioners land was not covered by this notification. The Deputy Housing Commissioner, Delhi Administration, purported to issue another notification dated 26/27th July, 1961 under s. 6 of the Act declaring that land specified therein in village Kilokri was required to be taken by the Government at public expense for a public purpose. This notification covered the petitioners land in question in village Kilokri. On January 9, 1962 the petitioner was informed by .....

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is colony. Thereafter the Land Acquisition Collector, Delhi, made an award No. 1276 dated February 16, 1962 with respect to the petitioner s said land. In March 1965 the petitioner learnt about the notification issued by the Delhi Administration on July 1, 1960 under s. 48(1) of the Act withdrawing the land of the 16 colonies mentioned therein from the acquisition out of the area covered by the notification dated November 13, 1959 on the ground that their lay out plan had been sanctioned by the .....

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ifferent from that of the 16 colonies. This differential treatment has resulted in violation of Art. 14 of the Constitution so far as the petitioner s colony is concerned. Mr. Agarwala also tried to make a subsidiary point in this connection and urged that acquisition of petitioner s land was a colourable exercise of the power under the Act inasmuch as the petitioner was out to do the same thing as was sought to be achieved by proceedings under Land Acquisition Act, the only difference being tha .....

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o encroach into the domain of the Judiciary. Mr. Mani contended that although there was no clear separation of legislative and judicial powers in our Constitution, nevertheless the Constitution did not confer unlimited powers on the legislature and it was for the Judiciary to declare the limits of the legislative powers enshrined in the Constitution. To quote Mr. Mani s words : "The Legislature exercises judicial power if its legislative action retroacts on past controversies and overrides .....

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to the clear demarcation between the judicial powers and legislative powers in America and attempt to engraft the said principle in the working of our Constitution. This development of the law, as pointed out in A. K. Gopalan v. State([1950] S.C.R. 88 at 198.) was due to historical reasons. In that case it was pointed out by Das, J. (see, at p. 286) that "the Supreme Court of the United States, under the leadership of Chief Justice Marshall, assumed the power to declare any law unconstitut .....

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....... Our Constitution, unlike the English Constitution, recognises the Court s supremacy over the legislative authority, but such supremacy is a very limited one, for it is confined to the field where the legislative power is circumscribed by limitations put upon it by the Constitution itself. Within this restricted field the Court may, on a scrutiny of the law made by the Legislature, declare it void if it is found to have transgressed the constitutional limitations." It will not serve .....

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hich the courts enforce, it must be done by statute, and cannot be done by a mandate to the courts which leaves the law unchanged, but seeks to compel the courts to construe and apply it not according to the judicial, but according to the legislative judgment......... If the legislature cannot thus indirectly control the action of the courts, by requiring of them a construction of the law according to its own views, it is very plain it cannot do so directly, by setting aside their judgments comp .....

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not thus be interfered with." Willoughby seeks to fortify his statement quoting from Cooley again : "The legislature does, or may, prescribe the rules under which the judicial power is exercised by the courts; and in doing so it may dispense, with any of those formalities which are not essential to the jurisdiction of the court; and whatever it may dispense with by statute anterior to the proceedings, we believe it may also dispense with by statute after the proceedings have been take .....

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eeded to argue that the wording of s. 4 of the Amending Act was not a question of mere form and that it was a decree purporting to operate as such. According to him unless s. 3 was retrospective, s. 4 would be meaningless and should be struck down. Mr. Mani relied particularly on the decision of the Federal Court in Basanta Chandra Ghose v. King Emperor([1944] F.C.R. 295) where it was held by this Court that Ordinance No. III of 1944 did not take away the power of the court to investigate and in .....

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he Court came to the conclusion that it was not validly made on any ground other than the ground that r. 26 of the Defence of India Rules was ultra vires s. 10 of the Ordinance would no more prevent it from so finding than S. 16 of the Defence of India Act did. We shall deal with the argument based on this case later on. The learned Solicitor General first dealt with the question as to whether Parliament was competent to pass the Validating Act and whether s. 4 of the Amending Act could be given .....

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245 to 250, 252 and 253. Acquisition and requisitioning of property is an entry in List III and Parliament is competent to make laws enumerated in that list under Art. 246(2) of the Constitution. As early as in the year 1878 it was pointed out by the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council in The Queen v. Burah(L.R. 5 I.A. 178 at 194) that the Indian Legislature when acting within the limits prescribed (by the Act of the Imperial Parliament which created it) had plenary powers of legislation as .....

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hat case the question before the Judicial Committee was whether Act XXII of 1869 of the Indian Legislature which excluded the jurisdiction of the High Court within certain specified districts was not inconsistent with the Indian High Courts Act or with the Charter of the High Court and so in its general scope within the legislative power of the Governor-General in Council. Under s. 4 of that Act the territory known as Garo Hills was removed from the jurisdiction of the Courts of Civil and Crimin .....

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ially named therein. Under s. 9 of the Act the Lieutenant-Governor was authorised by notification in the Calcutta Gazette to extend mutatis mutandis all or any of the provisions contained in the other sections of the Act to the Jaintia Hills, the Naga Hills, and such portion of the Khasi Hills as might for the time being form part of British India. The Lieutenant-Governor of Bengal, acting under powers conferred by s. 9, extended the provisions of Act XXII of 1869 to the territory of Khasi and J .....

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would be due to any other legislative authority than that of the GovernorGeneral in Council. Their whole operation is, directly and immediately, under and by virtue of this Act (XXII of 1869) itself." Reference was made by counsel to the case of Abeyesekra v. Jayatilake([1932] A.C. 261.). The question there arose as to whether an Order in Council of 1928 amending another of 1923 making provision that the action of a common informer brought to recover penalties under the Order in Council of .....

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considered by the Federal Court of India and this Court on a number of occasions. In the case of The United Provinces, V. Atiqa Begum([1940] F.C.R. 110) a question arose as to whether, the Regularisation of Remissions Act, 1938 of the United Provinces Legislature was within its competence. There was an Act in force, namely, the Agra Tenancy Act, 1926 the purpose whereof was to consolidate and amend the law relating to agricultural tenancy and certain other matters. Section 73 of that Act provid .....

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in respect of such land." In 1931 there was a catastrophic fall in agricultural prices followed by threats on the part of tenants to withhold rent on a large scale. The Government of the United Provinces devised a scheme for the systematic reduction of rents, varying with the circumstances of the different districts, followed later by consequential adjustments in land revenue. The Allahabad High Court had held in Muhammad Abdul Qaiyum v. Secretary of State for India(I.L.R. 1938 Allahabad , .....

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rovided that "notwithstanding anything in the Agra Tenancy Act, 1926........... or in any other law for the time being in force where rent has been remitted on account of any fall in the price of agricultural produce which took place before the commencement of this Act, under the order of the Provincial Government or any authority empowered by it in that behalf, such order, whether passed before or after the commencement of this Act, shall not be called in question in any civil or revenue c .....

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"It is true that "Validation of executive orders" or any entry even remotely analogous to it is not to be found in any of the three Lists; but I am clear that legislation for that purpose must necessarily be regarded as subsidiary or ancillary to the power of legislating on the particular subjects in respect of which the executive orders may have been issued." His Lordship further opined that powers of the court were not affected merely because certain executive orders were .....

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of 1942). On 4th June, 1943, the Federal Court held that the courts constituted under that Ordinance had not been duty invested with jurisdiction, in view of the nature of the provisions contained in ss. 5, 10 and 16 of that Ordinance. The next day, the Governor-General made and promulgated another Ordinance (Ordinance No- XIX of 1943) whereby Ordinance No. 11 of 1942 was repealed and certain provisions were made in respect of sentences which had been passed by the special courts and in respect .....

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the sentences which had been passed by the special courts, and it was claimed that the sentences should be treated as void or set aside. Section 4 of the new Ordinance provided that "Where the trial of any case pending before a court constituted under the said Ordinance has not concluded before the date of the commencement of this Ordinance, the proceedings of such court in the case shall be void and the case shall be deemed to be transferred" to the ordinary criminal courts for enquir .....

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nal Procedure, 1898 by a Sessions Judge, an Assistant Sessions Judge or a Magistrate, of the first class respectively, exercising competent jurisdiction under the said Code. (2)Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law, any such sentence as is referred to in sub-section (1) shall, whether or not the proceedings in which the sentence was passed were submitted for review under section 8, and whether or not the sentence was the subject of an appeal under Section 13 or Section 19, of the s .....

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he original sentence." Learned counsel for the accused conceded that the principle of validation by subsequent legislation was quite applicable to judicial as to ministerial proceedings but relying on Cooley s Constitutional Limitations, 8th ed., p. 205 and also pp. 773-776, they contended- (a)that while such legislation might seek to aid and support judicial proceedings, the legislature could not under the guise of legislation be permitted to exercise judicial power, and (b) that it was no .....

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American law. But an examination of the American authorities will show that the development of the results of this distribution in America has been influenced not merely by the simple fact of distribution of functions, but by the assumption that the Constitution was intended to reproduce the provision that had already existed in many of the State Constitutions positively forbidding the legislature from, exercising judicial powers . . . . One result of the application of this rule in the United .....

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the courts......... In India, however , the legislature has more than once enacted laws providing that suits which had been dismissed on a particular view of the law must be restored and retried." The learned Chief Justice referred to the Australian case, Federal Commissioner of Taxation v. Munro(38 Com. L. R. 153.) where a Board of Appeal constituted under an Act of 1922 had given certain decisions in appeals in income-tax matters. The law courts declared that the Australian Parliament had .....

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ct." This later Act was challenged as vesting judicial power in the Board of Review, but this contention was overruled. Reference may be made to the judgment of Starke, J. quoted by Spens, C.J. that "Parliament simply takes up certain determinations which exist in fact, though made without authority, and prescribes not that they shall be acts done by a Board of Review, but that they shall be treated as they would be treated if they were- such acts. The sections, no doubt, apply retrosp .....

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the Seventh Schedule to the Constitution Act. "It was not contended said the Chief Justice "that the mere absence of a specific provision about validating laws" was by itself of much significance." As observed by this Court in Atiqa Begum s case([1940] F.C.R. 110), "the power of validation must be taken to be ancillary or subsidiary to the power to deal with the particular subjects specified in the Lists." There is nothing in Basanta Chandra Ghose s case ([1944] F.C .....

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.J. said with regard to this clause that "here there has been no investigation or decision by any Tribunal which the legislating authority can be deemed to have given effect to. It is a direct disposal of cases by the legislature itself." (see at p. 309). It was pointed out that the nature of the provision considered in Piare Dusadh s case([1944] F.C.R. 61) was essentially different from cl. (2) of s. 10 of the impugned Ordinance. The question has engaged the attention of this Court in .....

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er 21, 1951. The Chief Electrical Inspector took over possession of the appellant and all its records etc. The State paid to the appellant ₹ 8,34,000 and odd as compensation. According to the appellant, about ₹ 1,00,000 still remained to be paid. Some of the electrical undertakings in Madras which had been taken over filed writ petitions in the High Court which upheld the validity of the impugned Act in so far as it related to the licencees other than municipalities. In Rajahmundry E .....

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1954 which received the assent of the President on 9th October, 1954. This Act incorporated the main provisions of the earlier Act and purported to validate action taken under the earlier Act. The appellant then filed a writ petition alleging that to the extent to which the Act purported to validate acts done under the earlier Act of 1949 it was ultra vires. It was further urged that the three bases of compensation as laid down by the Act were inconsistent with the requirement of Art. 31 of the .....

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oceedings, acts or things, were made, given, issued, taken or done are hereby declared to have been validly made, given, issued, taken or done, as the case may be, except to the extent to which the said orders, decisions, directions, notifications, proceedings, acts or things are repugnant to the provisions of this Act." It was held by this Court that this was "a saving and validating provision and it clearly intends to validate actions taken under the relevant provisions of the earlie .....

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vation "In our opinion, this argument is not wellfounded. If the Act is retrospective in operation and s. 24 has been enacted for the purpose of retrospectively validating actions taken under the provisions of the earlier Act, it must follow by the very retrospective operation of the relevant provisions that at the time when the impugned notification was issued, these provisions were in existence. That is the plain and obvious effect of the retrospective operation of the statute." Refe .....

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made to the case of Rai Ramkrishna v.The State of Bihar([1964] 1 S.C.R. 897). All these decisions lay down that the power to legislate for validating actions taken under statute which were not sufficiently comprehensive for the purpose is only ancillary or subsidiary to legislate on any subject within the competence of the legislature and such Validating Acts cannot be struck down merely because courts of law have declared actions taken earlier to be invalid for want of jurisdiction. Nor is ther .....

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Acts. By way of illustration reference may be made to the following Acts. (1) The Professions Tax Limitation (Amendment and Validation) Act, 1949 where s. 3(i) provided that "Notwithstanding anything to the contrary in any other law for the time being in force,- (i) no tax on circumstances and property imposed before the commencement of this Act under clause (ix) of sub-section (1) of section 128 of the United Provinces Municipalities Act, 1916, or, clause (b) of section 108 of the United P .....

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ri v. Narain Das (A.I.R. 1959 Punjab 50). There the High Court held that the court of an additional Judge cannot be regarded as a principal court of civil jurisdiction within the meaning of the Hindu Marriage Act and that a District Judge to whom a petition under the Act is presented cannot transfer it to an additional Judge for trial. The object of the Validation Act was to validate all proceedings taken and decrees and orders passed by any of the Courts specified in cl. (2) exercising or purpo .....

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on had been a district court within the meaning of the said Act." The courts referred to in sub-section (1) are : the court of an additional Judge, additional district Judge, etc. In our opinion the contentions raised about the invalidity of the Amending Act on the ground that s. 3 thereof was not made expressly retrospective or that it encroached upon the domain of the judiciary by seeking to nullify judicial decisions cannot be sustained. The American doctrine of well-defined separation o .....

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. It was open to Parliament to adopt either course, e.g. (a) to provide expressly for the retrospective operation of s. 3, or, (b) to lay down that no acquisition purporting to have been made and no action taken before the Land Acquisition (Amendment and Validation) Ordinance, 1967 shall be deemed to be invalid or ever to have become invalid because inter alia of the making of more than one report under s. 5-A or more than one declaration under s. 6 of the Land Acquisition Act, notwithstanding a .....

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nt, the provisions thereof are binding on all courts of law notwithstanding judgments, orders or decrees to the contrary rendered or made in the past. We find ourselves unable to accept the contention about the violation of Art. 31(2) of the Amending Act. It is not suggested that the Validating Act in express words enacts. any law which directly affects compensation payable in respect of the property acquired or lays down any principles different from those which were already in the Land Acquisi .....

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n under s. 4 issued on 13th November 1959 could not be resorted to for the purpose of making more than one declaration under s. 6 of the Act. Schemes of the magnitude of the plan for the development of Delhi or for the establishment of an iron and steel plant did not have to be considered in pre-Constitution days. The Land Acquisition Act of 1894 contained sufficient measures to allow acquisition of small parcels of property for the different schemes of the extent and magnitude which had to be c .....

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might well have provided in the Act of 1894 that it would be open to the appropriate government after issuing a notification under S. 4 to consider objections raised under S. 5 with regard to different localities from time to time enabling different reports to be made under S. 5-A with consequent adjustments in S. 6 providing for declarations to be made as and when each report under s. 5-A was considered. By the validation of actions taken under S. 6 more than once in respect of a single notific .....

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are being removed. In our opinion, the Validating Act does not fall within the mischief pointed out by this Court in various decisions starting from the State of West Bengal v. Mrs. Bela Banerjee([1954] S.C.R. 558) : Entry 42 in List III of the Seventh Schedule before its amendment read "Principles on which compensation for property acquired or requisitioned for the purposes of the Union or of a State or for any other public purpose is to be determined, and the forms and the manner in which .....

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fterwards the acquisition took place. Similarly in dismissing the appeal of the State in State of Madras v. D. Namasivaya Mudaliar ([1964] 6 S.C.R. 936) where the Madras Act XI of 1953 provided that compensation was payable on the basis of the valuation of the land on April 28, 1947 together with some improvements made thereon up to the date of notification under s. 4(1) of the Land Acquisition Act because of the discovery of the presence of lignite in certain taluks in 1947 and the announcement .....

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undamental right" and "there was no true relation between the acquisition of the land.... and the fixation of compensation based on their value on the market rate prevailing on April 28, 1947." Referring to the provision in the Land Acquisition Act for assessment of compensation on the basis of the market value of the land not on the date on which the interest of the owner was extinguished under section 16 but to the date of the notification under s. 4(1) it was observed that &quo .....

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rinciple which has held the field since 1923. It is true that the underlying principle of the Act of 1894 was that all increments due to the setting on foot of the acquisition proceedings were to be ignored whereas due to the ever spiralling of all prices all over India land values are mounting up all the time in all the States, specially round about big cities-an occurrence quite unconnected with the issue of a notification under s. 4(1)-but it cannot be said that because owners of land are to .....

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as the date for valuation. Sections 4 and 23 of the Land Acquisition Act are protected by Art. 31(5) (a) of the Constitution.. Only sections 5-A and 6 of the Act have been amended. The amendments do not alter the principle of compensation fixed by the Act nor contravene Art. 31 of the Constitution in any way. The Amending Act does not really derogate from the principle that the valuation on the date of issue of notification affords the criterion for determining compensation of all lands to be ac .....

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same time when the notification under s. 4 was issued on 13th November 1959, the State had considered that a very large area round about Delhi-would have to be acquired so that the development of the city could proceed in an orderly manner step by step not only Lo meet the immediate needs of the then. population of the city but with an eye to the everincreasing demands of the exploding population in all cities in India and specially in its capital. It was before, November 1959 that the State ha .....

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for housing purposes but also for, other purposes like education, industry and manufacture not to speak of amenities for recreation, entertainment etc. Of necessity,, the area under the proposed acquisition would have to be carved into blocks and the development of one or more blocks at a time could only be taken up in consonance with the resources available. Even contiguous blocks could be developed gradually and systematically. If a particular area, say block A was meant to provide lands for .....

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ith respect to Block B to be made some time after a similar declaration in respect of Block A ? In such a case, it would be incongruous to award compensation for lands acquired in Block B on a basis different from that in respect of lands in Block A covered by an earlier declaration under s. 6. The scope of Art. 31(2) as amended was considered by this Court in P. V. Mudaliar v. Deputy Collector([1965] 1 S.C.R. 614). It was there, pointed out that after the amendment "what is excluded from t .....

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d prices from year to year depending upon abnormal circumstances it cannot be said that fixation of average price of over five years is not a principle for ascertaining the price of the land in or about the date of acquisition." The decision is also an authority for the proposition that the omission of one of the elements that should properly be taken into account in fixing the compensation might result in the inadequacy of compensation but such omission in itself did not constitute fraud o .....

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ing such date, whichever was less. It is significant that the Act which was a postFourth Constitution Amendment Act, was upheld although by its own terms and independently of the Land Acquisition Act it provided for payment of compensation on the basis of the market value of the land at the date of the publication of the notification under s. 4(1). It may therefore be inferred that in upholding the Land Acquisition (Madras Amendment) Act, 1961, this Court was of the view that the principle of fi .....

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Art. 31(2) merely because the actions already taken have been sought to be validated. Nor are we satisfied that there has been any colourable or fraudulent exercise of legislative power. With regard to the question as to discrimination violative of Art. 14, it goes without saying that whenever an Amending Act is passed, there is bound to be some difference in treatment between transactions which have already taken place and those which are to take place in the future. That by itself will not at .....

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sdom whereof may be open to debate; it may even be demonstrated that the scheme is not the best in the circumstances and the choice of the Legislature may be shown to be erroneous, but unless the enactment fails to satisfy the dual test of intelligible classification and rationality of the relation with the object of the law, it will not be subject to judicial interference under Art. 14. Invalidity of legislation is not established by merely finding faults with the scheme adopted by the Legislat .....

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tification under s. 4. (d)To prescribe a time limit for future acquisitions as also pending proceedings not yet completed; and (e) To provide additional compensation by way of interest in all cases where acquisition has not yet been completed and where a declaration under s. 6 is issued more than three years after the notification under s. 4. There is nothing arbitrary or irrational about the said objects. It is well known that in some cases there has been unusual delay in the issue of declarati .....

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e time within which a declaration under s. 6 may be made when a notification under s. 4 is issued after 20th January, 1967. This period is limited to three years there having been no time limit in the past. We are not impressed by the argument that a person whose land may be covered by a notification under s. 4 issued more than one year before 20th January 1967 would seemingly be treated differently from a person whose land comes under the notification under s. 4 after that date. The Legislature .....

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period of two years in one case and three years in the other. As was pointed out in Jalan Trading Co. v. Mazdoors Union([1967] 1 S.C.R. 15.). "Equal protection of the laws is denied if in achieving a certain object persons, objects or transactions similarly circumstanced are differently treated by law no rational relation to the object sought to be achieved by the law." It is not possible to say that because the legislature thought of improving upon the Act of 1894 by prescribing certa .....

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ion caused by the enactment of a law between transactions governed thereby and those which are not so governed. As was pointed out by this Court in Hatisingh Manufacturing Co. Ltd. v. Union of India([1960] 3 S.C.R. 528 at 543). "When Parliament enacts a law imposing a liability as flowing from certain transactions prospectively, it evidently makes a distinction between those transactions which are covered by the Act and those which are not covered by the Act, because they were completed bef .....

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lls short of the expectation of the litigants. With regard to the provision for payment of interest, in addition to compensation or by way of additional compensation no grievance can be made in that interest is not allowed in respect of transactions which have been already completed and compensation taken. The Legislature felt that because there has been unreasonable delay in the payment of compensation, interest should be, allowable where the period of three years has already expired or may exp .....

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n opposition and will be referred to presently. Here the attack is on an executive act, namely, the differential treatment meted out to 16 colonies whose lands were covered by the notification dated 13th November, 1959 but in respect of which de-notification orders were issued subsequently. It would appear that some of the letters which were received by Sohan Lal did not bring out the full facts and the policy underlying the apparent discrimination in this case. It is pointed out in paragraph 36 .....

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nd not the service plans." This policy is corroborated by the records of the Land and Housing Department, Delhi Administration which were made available to us at the hearing. It appears from that record that after the notification of 13th November 1959 private owners of land who wanted to lay out colonies and had taken steps in respect thereof by making some arrangement and spent money-threon had approached the Administration for release of their lands from the notification and a proposal f .....

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ch notified colony was considered separately and it was felt that cases in which the layout and service plans had been finally approved in all respects before 13th November, 1959 should be recommended for de-notification. On 1st of July, 1960, the Commission, Delhi Municipal Corporation went into the matter and recommended that "All those colonies in respect of which both lay-out plans and service plans had been approved by the Delhi Development Provisional Authority the Delhi Development, .....

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ut plan of the colony as early as June 18, 1956 had not the service plan approved before 13th November, 1959. It is clear from the annexures to the petition that the details of the layout of the colony were submitted on 30th August, 1956. The petitioner submitted service plans on 15th September, 1959. There was nothing wrong with the plans intrinsically except that there were more than one small pocket of land within the colony to which the petitioner could not prove his, ownership satisfactoril .....

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cannot hold that the petitioner was subjected to any discrimination. There was a policy behind the denitrification and it has not been suggested that the policy was vitiated by any malafides on the part of the authorities. All the points urged by the petitioners, therefore, fail and the petitions will stand dismissed. There Will be no order as to costs. Shelat J.-The facts in these five writ petitions have been sufficiently set out by our learned brother Mitter J.in his judgment and therefore ne .....

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ereafter referred to as the Principal Act) notifying that land measuring 34070 acres marked in blocks A to T and X in the map enclosed there with was required by the Delhi Administration for the planned development of Delhi. In pursuance of that notification, the Delhi Administration issued sec. 6 notification dated June 14, 1961 in respect of the land situate in village Kilkori measuring 97 bighas 14 biswas only from out of the said notified area. The notification directed the Collector to take .....

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t in M. P. State v. V. P. Sharma (([1966] 3 S.C.R. 557) where facts were similar to the facts in the present cases and where the land was required for the erection of a steel plant in public sector. In that case the notification under sec. 4 covering land in eleven villages was issued in May 1949. This was followed by several notifications under sec. 6, the last of them being in. 1960. After examining the provisions of secs. 4, 5A and 6 of the Act, this Court declared as follows :- "At the .....

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tion under s. 4(1) stands automatically released. The intention of the legislature was that one notification under s. 4(1) should be followed by survey under. s. 4(2), objections under s.. 5A heard, and thereafter, one declaration under sec. 6 issued. If the Government requires more land in that locality, there is nothing to prevent it from issuing another notification under s. 4(1) making a further survey if necessary, hearing objections and then making another declaration under s. 6, whereas t .....

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ted on the ground that even if it be so there is nothing to prevent the government from issuing another notification under sec. 4 followed by a notification under sec. 6, that the government s power to acquire land in a particular locality is not exhausted by issuing one notification under sec. 4(1) followed by a notification under s.6 and that it can proceed to do so by a fresh notification under Section 4(1) and a fresh declaration under sec. 6 and that such a procedure would be fair to all co .....

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hat the land is likely to be needed. Even if it had not then completed its plan it would have enough time before the making of a declaration under section 6 to do so. I think therefore that the difficulty of the government, even if there is one, does not lead to the conclusion that the Act contemplates the making of a number of declarations under sec. 6." In the view taken Sharma s case(1) sec. 6 notification dated March 18, 1966 was invalid as sec. 4 notification dated November 13, 1959 on .....

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have to pay compensation on the basis of the market value of the land on the date of such new notification instead of on November 13, 1959, the government promulgated an Ordinance dated January 20, 1967 called the Land Acquisition (Amendment and Validation) Ordinance 1 of 1967. It is not necessary to set out the provisions of the Ordinance as it has been substituted by Land Acquisition (Amendment and Validation) Act, 13 of 1967 (hereafter referred to as the Amendment Act) passed on April 12, 196 .....

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pect of the land which has been notified under sec. 4 sub-sec. (1) or make different reports in respect of different parcels of such land." Section 3 added the following words in sec. 6(1) after the words certify its orders , viz., "and different declaration may be made from time to time in respect of different parcels of any land covered by the same notification under sec. 4 sub-sec. (1) irrespective of whether one report or different reports has or have been made (wherever required) .....

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ting to have been made before the commencement of the said Ordinance (i.e., before 20-1-67) and no action taken or thing done including any notification published in connection with such acquisition shall be deemed to be invalid or ever to have become invalid on the ground that (i)one or more collectors have performed the functions of collector in respect of the entire land covered by s. 4 notification. (ii) one or more reports have been made under s.5A(2) whether in respect of the entire land o .....

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or after 20-1- 67 in connection with such acquisition shall be deemed to be invalid merely on the said grounds mentioned in clause (a). Sub-sec. (2) of, sec. 4. provides that no declaration under sec. 6 shall be made in respect of land covered by sec. 4 notification published before 20-1-67 after the expiry of two years from that date, that is, 20-1-69. Sec. 4(3) provides for payment of interest in the circumstances set out therein. The result of the Amendment Act clearly is that an area of land .....

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le declaration and a single award under the Principal Act is done away with. The government can freeze an area by issuing a sec. 4 notification and can, subject to the limitations in sec. 3 and sec. 4 (2) of the Amendment Act, go on acquiring parcels of such area at its convenience irrespective of the time when it makes up its mind to acquire and pay, compensation on the basis of the Value at the date of sec. 4 notification. In the case of land notified under sec. 4(1) after 20-1-67 the owner is .....

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that area were acquired as late as 1966 and the remaining area can still be acquired until 20-1 769, each owner being thus deprived of the appreciation in value of his land depending upon when during all this long period the government decides to acquire it. Thus, if the land is notified in 1959 and is acquired in 1960, the loss of appreciation in value is only of one year. But the owner of another plot even if it is contiguous to it, if the government decides to acquire it in 1969, would be de .....

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ification would become exhausted and the land not declared as needed thereunder would be relieved from acquisition. If government then desires to acquire any land in addition to. the one so declared it would have to be notified a fresh and the government would be obliged to pay compensation at the market rate prevailing on such date. The practical effect of the Amendment Act is that by keeping alive sec. 4 notification and by declaring the declarations made after the first declaration valid, the .....

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0-1-69 where the land is notified before 20-1-67 and before the expiry of three years where s. 4 notification is issued after 20-1-67 and thus avoid compensating the appreciation in value in the meantime to which the owner would have been entitled to. Though in form the Amendment Act purports to validate acquisitions including orders and declarations made therefor, the real purpose of enacting the Amendment Act is to, avoid having otherwise to compensate for the appreciation in the land value du .....

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s and reports of a Collector or Collectors under s, 5A. diverse declarations, and awards in respect of different Parcels of land covered by sec. 4 notification are prospective. It is only sec. 4 which is made retrospective. But it merely seeks to nullify the decision in Sharma s Case([1966] 3 S.C.R. 557) and purports to keep alive sec. 4 notifications which would have otherwise lost their efficacy and validates acquisitions including orders and see. 6 declarations purported to have been made on .....

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is usually done in such validating Acts. A notification under sec. 4 having exhausted itself after a declaration under sec. 6 in respect of a part of the land covered by it and the rest of the land being relieved from acquisition, there would be prima facie no basis for a sec. 6 declaration or acquisition unless such notification is retrospectively validated by a supporting amendment of sec. 4 of the Principal Act or by making secs. 2 and 3 of the Amendment Act retrospective. and by a fiction de .....

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though subsequent acquisitions including orders and declarations under sec. 6 are validated and that such validation has no efficacy as there would be no basis by way of a sec. 4 notification for such acquisition or order or declaration. (2) that Act 13 of 1967 is in derogation of the requirements of Art. 31(2) as it purports to authorise acquisition without a fresh sec. 4 notification thereby allowing compensation to be paid on the basis of an exhausted sec. 4 notification and on the value of t .....

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he latter case; (b) where a sec. 4 notification is made after 20-1-67 compensation would be fixed on the basis of the value on that date but where a sec. 4 notification is made before 20- 1-67 compensation would be on the basis of the value on the date of the exhausted notification howsoever long a period has elapsed since such notification; (c)if compensation has not been paid before 20-1-67 interest has to be paid on the compensation amount, but if compensation has been paid before 20-1-67 no .....

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compensation on the value at the date of s. 4 notification howsoever long the intervening period may be. A person affected by see. 4 notification issued after 20-1-67 is thus differently treated than the one who is affected by such a notification issued before 20-1-67. In Writ Petition No. 85 of 1967 an additional point was raised, viz., that though 16 colonies in village Kilkori were denotified under s. 48, the land of the petitioner though, situate within the same notified area was not denotif .....

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n of law according to its views. The legislative action cannot be made to retroact upon past transactions and controversies and reverse decisions which the courts in exercise of their undoubted authority have made,.for, that would mean not only exercise of a judicial function but in effect to sit as a court of review to which the past transactions and controversies are referred to. The question as formulated by him is whether a statute which simply validates acts and orders pronounced upon by a .....

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r s. 4 or s. 23 which deal with compensation,.that it amends only the procedural provisions and that sec. 4 thereof merely validates acquisitions including orders and notifications purported to have been made or passed to get over the difficulty create by Sharma s Case([19661 3 S.C.R. 557).The impugned Act does not frankly deal with compensation.But as already stated it is not the form of a statute under challenge which matters but its substance, and the direct impact it has on the constitutiona .....

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an be made by reason of s. 4 of the impugned Act at different times and as late as 1969. Yet, the compensation would be on the value in 1959 irrespective of the fact that such value has appreciated in the meantime due to the general spiralling of prices and not as a consequence of its having been notified under sec. 4. It is manifest that but for the validating provisions of S. 4 of the Amendment Act government would have had either to proceed with the acquisition of the whole of the notified la .....

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the owner of the appreciation of value during the intervening period. Such appreciation would have had to be compensated for but for sec. 4 of the impugned Act-. Each parcel of land in an area notified under sec. 4 would thus be dealt with differently depending on at what point of time it is acquired. A piece of land would fetch compensation at X amount even though its market value has doubled by the time sec. 6 declaration in respect of it is made. Another piece of the very same land would be .....

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ling with or affecting compensation. Besides, by amending sees. 5A and 6 and validating acquisitions, orders and declarations the Amendment Act brings about changes of a fundamental character in the Act by converting the unitary character of an acquisition into a diversified one, in that instead of one inquiry and one report by the same officer,. one declaration under sec. 6 and one award, it permits several inquiries and several reports by different officers, several declarations and even sever .....

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in value as a result of the land having, been notified; and (2) that the basis of compensation emerging from the Amendment Act has a bearing on the adequacy of compensation and hence the court is barred under the amended Art. 31(2) from making any scrutiny. The principle on which compensation is to be ascertained has., undergone changes from time to time. In the Act of 1870, s. 24 provided that it should be fixed on the basis of the value at the time of paying compensation. That was changed in .....

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on the principle that in calculating compensation it was fair to exclude appreciation due, to the land having been notified for a scheme for which it was sought to be acquired. The, principle on which appreciation in value after the issuance of s. 4 notification was. excluded is no longer valid or in accord with the present day realities for it is a notorious fact that prices of properties have, been continuously rising for reasons into which it is neither necessary nor relevant to go into. The .....

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er s. 4 Would have become necessary and higher compensation would have become payable than now. The fact that neither s. 4 nor s. 23 is altered therefore does not make any difference. The impugned Act being a legislation after the 4th Constitution amendment of 1955 the question as to the adequacy of compensation is no longer amenable to judicial scrutiny but the amendment of Art. 31(2) in 1955 has not affected the constitutional requirement that no property can be compulsorily acquired except un .....

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on between the word "compensation in Art. 31 and the said Entry and the words "the acquisition of property on just terms" in s. 51 (XXXI) of the Australian Constitution Act and held that compensation meant just equivalent and the principles which should govern the determination of compensation amount to be given to the expropriated owner must ensure that what is determined must be such compensation, i.e., just equivalent. In striking down the proviso to s. 8 of the West Bengal Lan .....

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. 4 notification must be regarded as denying to the owner the true equivalent of the land which is ,expropriated and that it is for the State to show that fixation of compensation on the market value on an anterior date does not constitute violation of the constitutional guarantee. This decision was in respect of a law before the 1955 amendment and the court expressed no opinion on the question whether it was possible by enacting legislation after the 1955 amendment to provide that compensation .....

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e arose in P. Vajravelu Mudaliar v. Deputy Collector([1965] 1 S.C.R. 614.). This decision laid down the following propositions :- (i) whether the principles laid down in an impugned Act take into account all the elements to make up the true value of the property and exclude matters which are to be included is a justiciable issue; governing its fixation cannot be questioned on the ground of inadequacy; (iii)that the connotation of "compensation" and the question of justiciability are di .....

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dequacy of compensation. As to how and in what manner the question of adequacy would arise was illustrated by giving various examples. Article 31(2) as amended means therefore that if the impugned Act either fixes just equivalent as compensation or lays down principles for fixing such just equivalent it cannot be impeached on the ground that such compensation is inadequate or that when working out those principles the resultant compensation is inadequate. But this does not mean that the amendmen .....

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gislature uses in an Act a legal term which has received judicial interpretation it must be assumed that it is used in the sense in which it has been judicially interpreted unless a contrary intention appears. At p. 629 of the report it has clearly been laid down that "If the legislature though ex facie purports to provide for compensation or indicates the principles for ascertaining the same but in effect and substance takes away a property without paying compensation for it, it will be ex .....

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w in fraud of its powers." Following this decision this Court held in the Union of India v. Metal Corporation of India([1967] 1 S.C.R. 255,) that the principles laid down in the impugned Act were not in accord with Art. 31(2) and that an acquisition law "to justify itself has to provide for the payment of a just equivalent to the property acquired or lay down principles which are not arbitrary but which are relevant to the fixation of compensation. It is only when the principles stand .....

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ough resulting in inadequacy of compensation would not constitute fraud on power. But there is no analogy between the provisions of the impugned Act in that case and the instant cases. Though that Act varied the method of ascertainment of compensation provided by s. 23 of the Principal Act it provided for taking the average of prices prevailing during the 5 years in or about the date of acquisition. By striking the average of prices during those 5 years the Act actually took into account the app .....

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d had become exhausted where s. 6 declaration has been made. for a part of the land covered by such s. 4 notification as still outstanding. This is sought to be done without any legislative provision in the impugned Act revitalising the notification which had become dead and inefficacious. Such a thing could not be done by merely validating acquisitions, orders and declarations without revitalising by some provision the notifications under s. 4 which had become exhausted and on which such acquis .....

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on the date of s. 4 notification which had exhausted itself. By validating the acquisitions, orders and declarations made on the basis of such an exhausted notification the impugned Act saves government from having to issue a fresh s. 4 notification and having to pay compensation calculated on the market value as on the date of such fresh notification and depriving the expropriated owner the benefit of the appreciated value in the meantime. The real object of s. 4 of the impugned Act is thus to .....

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