The Madhya Pradesh high court on Tuesday dismissed pleas by four petitioners who own chambers and offices in the Associated Journal Limited building after they demanded to be made party in the suit against the publisher of the now-defunct National Herald newspaper.
The Bhopal Development Authority has filed a suit in the district court at Bhopal against the Associated Journal Limited for not vacating its 1.14 acres land in Bhopal after the lease deed of the land expired on April 1, 2011. The court heard the case on May 13, 2015.
On Tuesday, the high court upheld a September 2015 order by a Bhopal lower court which rejected the applications of Gajanan Distributors and Developers Pvt. Ltd., Dhiresh Nigam, Rajeev Sharma and Arif Gohar Khan. The court also advised the petitioners to file independent suits.
During the proceedings, BDA counsel P Kaurav argued Associated Journal Limited violated the terms and conditions of the lease deed as the land was given to the publishers for office and press purposes only but the same was being used for commercial activities.
The Associated Journal Limited sold the premises without seeking permission from the BDA, the counsel said, with the publisher constructing a building on the land with the title “City Centre”.
The layout of the building was sanctioned by the BDA, which also gave a no objection certificate (NOC) to Associated Journal Limited, but the court observed that “the NOC to construct building is not for residential /commercial purpose but for the use of the press”.