Taking serious view of a bunch of petitions filed by villagers of Gokalgarh and Rewari in district Rewari challenging acquisition of their land for utilisation for residential / commercial sectors 6 and 7 at Rewari, out of which around 90% land of the selected influential people was later released, including Suncity Developer, the Punjab and Haryana high court on Friday set aside the notification.
The petitions filed by Satish Kumar and nine others came up for hearing before the division bench comprising justice MM Kumar and justice Gurdev Singh.
The petitioners brought to the notice of the court that Haryana government issued notification under section 4 of the land acquisition act on July 21, 2006 for acquiring land of villages Gokalgarh and Rewari, measuring 1.69 acres and 315.15 acres respectively. However, declaration under section 6 of the Act on July 20, 2007 was made only in respect of 1.69 acres and 33.61 acres of villages Gokalgarh and Rewari, respectively. In this manner, 290 acres of land has been left out from acquisition.
The petitioners claimed that they have constructed houses on the acquired land and are residing in the said with their respective families. It has also been stated that they deposited the development charges development charges of ranging from Rs 24,000 to 62,000 with the municipal committee,
Rewari in 2006. Besides this, the electricity and water connections are also installed in their houses and their site plans were sanctioned before Section 4 notification.
Referring to the policy dated June 26, 1991, it was submitted that the area having construction could not have been acquired. The petitioners alleged that despite filing of objections under Section 5-A of the Act, their land has been acquired in a discriminatory manner.
The bench held, “Once 90% area has been recommended for exclusion from acquisition, we are doubtful if there could be any planned development…..even the recommendation made by the Committee seems to have been ignored. The public purpose of acquiring the land seems to have been defeated.”
The bench further stated, “A large tract of land has been released from acquisition whereas the land/construction belonging to the petitioners is sought to be acquired. Such an action would smacks of arbitrariness and, thus, violative of Article 14 of the Constitution.”