Dispute with respect to Apportionment of amount of compensation to be adjudicated upon as per Section 30 of the Land Acquisition Act 1894: Supreme Court 

Dispute with respect to Apportionment of amount of compensation to be adjudicated upon as per Section 30 of the Land Acquisition Act 1894: Supreme Court 

The Supreme Court ruled that if there is any dispute with respect to the apportionment of the amount of compensation, the same has to be adjudicated upon and/or resolved as per Section 30 of the Land Aquisition Act 1894.

Background 

The appellant was the original owner of the land in question acquired by the State Government under the provisions of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894. 

Land Acquisition Officer declared the award with respect to the land acquired on 15.09.2010. At the instance of the appellant claiming to be the original landowner, a reference was made under Section 18 of the Act 1894 before the Reference Court for enhancement of the amount of compensation. 

The said reference came to be allowed by the Reference Court. The Reference Court awarded additional compensation to the appellant.

Respondent claiming to be the subsequent purchaser of the land acquired made an application in the disposed of reference case raising objection not to pay the awarded amount to the appellant. 

Decision 

The division bench of Justice M.R. Shah and Justice Pamidighantam Sri Narasimha noted that the dispute can be said to be apportionment of the amount of compensation. 

“It is the case on behalf of respondent original applicant that it has purchased the acquired land by five different registered sale deeds and therefore it is entitled to the enhanced amount of compensation as against the appellant. 

On the aforesaid ground alone, respondent original applicant cannot be permitted to be impleaded in the First Appeal preferred by the State challenging the judgment and award passed by the Reference Court enhancing the amount of compensation which, as such, was in the reference at the instance of the appellant original landowner” the court said.

Moreover, it was stated that if there is any dispute with respect to apportionment of the amount of compensation, the same has to be adjudicated upon and/or resolved as per Section 30 of the Act 1894. 

Further, the court ordered that till the proceedings under Section 30 of the Act 1894 are terminated and/or disposed of and the dispute with respect to apportionment of the amount of compensation is resolved, the appellant cannot be permitted to withdraw the amount of compensation as the apportionment of the amount of compensation can always be subject to the ultimate outcome of the proceedings under Section 30 of the Act 1894. 

The court quashed and set aside the impugned order passed by the High Court permitting respondent original applicant to be impleaded as party-respondent in the First Appeal.

It was futher directed by the court that the entire amount of compensation deposited by the State shall be invested in the name of the Nazir of the Reference Court in cumulative fixed deposit in any nationalised bank, initially for a period of three years, to be further renewed from time to time, subject to the ultimate outcome of the proceedings under Section 30 of the Act 1894.  

Case title: Patel Kodarbhai Mohanbhai v/s Sonata Ceramica Pvt. Ltd. and Others

Citation: SLP(Civil) No.19173/2021

Click here to read the Order/Judgment

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