At, High Court of Delhi
By, THE HONOURABLE CHIEF JUSTICE MR. MARKANDEYA KATJU & THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE MADAN B. LOKUR
For the Appellant: Jayant Bhushan, Sr. Advocate, Anil Dutt, Advocate. For the Respondent: Sangeeta Chandra, Advocate.
Markandeya Katju, CJ.
1. This writ appeal has been filed against the judgment of the learned Single Judge dated 04.11.2004, by which the petition was dismissed and against the order dated 18.03.2005 by which the Review Petition was also dismissed.
2. Heard learned counsel for the parties and perused the record.
3. By means of the Writ Petition in the year 2003, the petitioners prayed for a direction to the respondent/DDA to make allotment of an Industrial plot in favour of the petitioner based on his application dated 15.10.1966.
4. It is alleged in paragraph 2 of the writ petition that the petitioner was running its industrial units in a non-conforming area of Kamla Nagar, Delhi. The DDA in 1966 took out a scheme for allotment of industrial plots to the persons who were running their industrial units in a non-conforming area.
5. Accordingly, the petitioner applied vide application form No. 7165 dated 15.10.1966, Annexure P1 to the writ petition and he also deposited a sum of Rs.1250/- vide Annexure P2.
6. It is alleged that the respondent acknowledged the petitioner’s application form and by letter dated 6.1.1969 intimated to the petitioner that a plot of 400 sq. yrds. size can be offered in Wazirpur Industrial Area provided the petitioner is agreeable to pay full premium in one lump sum and subject to availability of the required number of plots. It was also mentioned in the letter that if the petitioner was not willing to accept these conditions or if after the petitioner’s acceptance enough plots are not available in the above mentioned scheme, allotment will be made in Okhla Industrial area. The petitioner was required to give his option within 7 days of the letter.
7. It is alleged in paragraph 5 of the writ petition that the petitioner exercised his option for seeking an industrial plot at Wazirpur Industrial Area and sent a letter dated 13.1.1969. The respondent vide letter dated 30.6.1969 made an offer for 400 sq. yds. plot in Wazirpur Industrial Area and a total demand of Rs.10,400/- was raised vide Annexure P4. The respondent then vide letter dated 30.06.1969 informed the petitioner that his name has been included in the draw of plots which would take place on 14.9.1970 vide Annexure P5. The petitioner was allotted plot No. 099, Block D in Okhla Industrial Scheme Phase I, New Delhi vide Annexure P6 and a demand letter dated 30.11.1970 was sent by the respondent calling for 25% of the total premium vide Annexure P7.
8. It is alleged in paragraph 9 of the writ petition that the petitioner did not want allotment in Okhla Industrial area, as it was allegedly undeveloped at that point of time, and he made a request for allotment of a plot at Wazirpur Industrial area. However, this request was not accepted and since the petitioner was not interested in taking a plot in Okhla, he did not deposit the amount claimed vide letter dated 3.11.1970. Consequently, the respondent vide letter dated 26.4.1971 cancelled the allotment made in the petitioner’s favour in Okhla industrial area vide Annexure P8.
9. The petitioner, then made a representation against this cancellation and on consideration of his application he was required to pay Rs.388.75 towards interest for belated payment.
10. The petitioner alleged in paragraph 12 of the writ petition that he deposited that amount vide draft dated 30.5.1972 also intimating in the same letter that a sum of Rs.6612/- being the second installment has also been paid by the petitioner. However, no allotment was made in his favour. It is alleged that the petitioner paid a sum of Rs.26,836.75 till now, but had not been allotted the plot.
11. A counter-affidavit was filed by the DDA and we have perused the same. It is alleged therein that the writ petition is liable to be dismissed on the ground of laches. It is stated in paragraph 1 of the preliminary objections in the counter-affidavit that the petitioner had been informed by the DDA vide letter 6.1.1969, Annexure P3 to the writ petition that the plot of 400 sq. yds. size can be offered to the petitioner in Wazirpur industrial area provided the premium is paid in one lump sum and subject to the availability of the required number of plots of the said size. The petitioner conveyed its acceptance vide letter dated 13.1.1969 to deposit the premium within 7 days from the date of receipt of the said notice. It was mentioned in the letter of the DDA that if the payment is not received within the stipulated period, the allotment of the plot will be treated as cancelled. The petitioner failed to respond within 7 days of the notice.
12. The case of the petitioner was again considered for allotment for an industrial plot in Okhla industrial area and he was allotted plot No. 99, Block-D, Okhla Industrial area, Phase - I, in the draw of plot held on 14.9.70 and the petitioner was accordingly intimated vide letter dated 3.11.1970 and called upon to deposit the amount claimed in letter dated 30.4.1971. The petitioner failed to deposit the amount within the stipulated period and hence the allotment of the plot was cancelled. The petitioner requested for restoration of the allotment, and the petitioner was called upon to deposit the interest amount. However, the said amount was not deposited in time.
13. The allotment was cancelled and not restored and the DDA refunded the amount of Rs.10,579.20 to the petitioner after deducting the cancellation charges, which was sent to the petitioner vide letter dated 21.8.78. It is alleged that the petitioner was sleeping over the matter and after a lapse of 25 years got up from his slumber and again requested for revival/restoration of the allotment in the year 2003. The
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said request was examined and the petitioner was informed that the same cannot be acceded to at this stage. The plot which had earlier been allotted to the petitioner was cancelled and put to auction in June 1976 and was auctioned to the highest bidder. 14. On the facts of the case, we find no merit in this appeal. The petitioner was a repeated defaulter and hence there can be no equity in his favour. Moreover, he has come after a delay of 27 years and the appeal is liable to be dismissed on the ground of laches. 15. Appeal is dismissed. The DDA is directed to refund the amount deposited by the Appellant forthwith.