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Union of India Through Deputy Chief Engineer, Construction South Central Railways, Represented by Senior Section Engineer, Secunderabad & Others v/s Gundappa & Others

    M.F.A. Nos. 201004, 201005 of 2019, MFA. CROB. Nos. 200035, 200036 of 2021

    Decided On, 30 June 2021

    At, High Court of Karnataka Circuit Bench OF Kalaburagi

    By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE S.G. PANDIT & THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE M.G.S. KAMAL

    For the Appearing Parties: Manvendra Reddy, Narendra M. Reddy, Advocates, K.N. Phaneendra, Sr. Counsel, Amresh S. Roja, Advocate, Archana P. Tiwari, AGA.



Judgment Text

(Prayer: This Miscellaneous First Appeal is filed under Section 54(1) of the Land Acquisition Act, praying to allow the appeal by setting aside the judgment and award dated 06.12.2018 passed by the II Additional Senior Civil Judge, Kalaburagi in LAC No.371/2010.

This MFA Crob is filed under Order 41 Rule 22 of CPC, praying to allow the appeal modifying in judgment in LAC No.371/2010 dated 06.12.2018 passed by the II Additional Senior Civil Judge, Kalaburagi and enhance the claim sought by the cross objector in the appeals as awarded in MFA No.200066/2017.

This Miscellaneous First Appeal is filed under Section 54(1) of the Land Acquisition Act, praying to allow the appeal by setting aside the judgment and award dated 06.12.2018 passed by the II Additional Senior Civil Judge, Kalaburagi in LAC No.370/2010.

This MFA Crob is filed under Order 41 Rule 22 of CPC, praying to allow the appeal modifying in judgment in LAC No.371/2010 dated 06.12.2018 passed by the II Additional Senior Civil Judge, Kalaburagi and enhance the claim sought by the cross objector in the appeals as awarded in MFA No.200066/2017.)

S.G. Pandit, J.

1. Though the matters are listed for admission, with the consent of learned counsels for the parties, they are taken up for disposal. Since in both the appeals and cross objections lands in question are acquired under the same notification for the same purpose and from same village and since the contentions urged are common, they are clubbed and heard together and disposed of by this common judgment.

2. The lands bearing Sy.No.72/4 (72/2) measuring 1 acre 08 guntas and Sy.No.70/2 (70/3) measuring 2 acres 05 guntas of Jafarabad village were acquired under notification dated 19.05.2005 issued under Section 4(1) of the Land Acquisition Act (for short 'the Act') for the purpose of laying new broad gauge railway line from Bidar to Gulbarga. The Special Land Acquisition Officer determined the market value of the lands acquired at Rs.20,500/- per acre for dry land. The claimants-land owners not being satisfied with the compensation determined by the SLAO sought reference under Section 18(1) of the Act for higher compensation contending that lands in question are having NA potentiality and surrounding lands are converted for NA purpose and enormous development has taken place.

3. Before the Reference Court, the claimants- land owners examined PW.1-Gurappa and marked Exs.P1 to P58 documents in support of their case. Whereas, the appellant-South Central Railways examined RW.1, apart from marking Exs.R1 to R63.

4. The Reference Court relying on the market value fixed by this Court in MFA No.200360/2016 and 200361/2016 at Rs.129.95 per sq.ft. in respect of the same Jafarabad village and same notification dated 19.05.2005, fixed the market value in the present case also at Rs.129.95 per sq.ft.

5. Aggrieved by the compensation awarded contending that it is on the higher side, the beneficiary- South Central Railways is in appeals and not being satisfied with the quantum of compensation awarded, the claimants are in cross objections.

6. Heard Sri Manvendra Reddy, learned counsel for the appellant-South Central Railways, learned Additional Government Advocate for the respondent-State and Sri K.N. Phaneendra, learned senior counsel for Sri Amresh S. Roja for the cross- objectors/claimants.

7. Learned counsel for the appellant submits that the compensation awarded by the Reference Court without looking to the materials placed on record by the appellant is wholly erroneous. The method followed by the Reference Court to determine the market value is oppose to settled principles of law. The Reference Court ought to have followed the comparative sale method.

8. Per contra, learned senior counsel appearing for the cross-objectors/claimants submits that the Reference Court rightly following the decision of this Court in MFA Nos.200360/2016 and 200361/2016 (Union of India v/s Smt. Dhanashree W/o Gururaj and others) dated 25.01.2017 which also related to notification dated 19.05.2005, fixed the market value of the land at Rs.129.95 per sq.ft. Further he submits that this Court in MFA No.200344/2017 and connected matters (Union of India v/s Kalyanappa and others) dated 15.09.2020 in respect of the same notification dated 19.05.2005, following the judgment of Hon'ble Apex Court in the case of Mahadev vs. Deputy Chief Engineer, Constructions, South Central Railways (Civil Appeal No.7642/2019) dated 26.09.2019 and the judgment of Co-ordinate Bench of this Court in MFA No.31998/2011 in the case of Ashok S/o Basappa Reshmi vs. the Special LAO disposed of on 08.02.2013, awarded additional compensation at 3% of the basic land value. Thus, the learned senior counsel prays for allowing the cross-objections by granting additional 3% compensation.

9. We have given our thoughtful consideration to the submissions of the learned counsel appearing for the parties and we have carefully gone through the decision of the Hon'ble Apex Court in Mahadev's case (Supra) and the judgment of Co-ordinate Bench of this court in Kalyanappa's case (Supra).

10. The notification issued under Section 4(1) of the Act in the present case is dated 19.05.2005 relating to Jafarabad village for the purpose of laying railway line between Bidar and Gulbarga, whereas the notifications involved both in Mahadev's case as well as Kalyanappa's case are dated 19.05.2005 in respect of the same Jafarabad village and for the same purpose of laying new broad-gauge railway line from Bidar to Gulbarga.

11. Since the present appeals also arise out of the notification dated 19.05.2005 issued under Section 4(1) of the Act for the purpose of laying new broad- gauge railway line from Bidar to Gulbarga, we are inclined to follow the judgment of the Hon'ble Apex Court in Mahadev's case and

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the judgment of Co-ordinate Bench of this Court in Kalyanappa's case, both of which relate to the same notification dated 19.05.2005, confirm the judgment of the Reference Court and award 3% additional compensation on the basic land value. Accordingly, MFA Nos.201004/2019 and 201005/2019 filed by the South Central Railways are dismissed and MFA Crob Nos.200035/2021 and 200036/2021 filed by the claimants are allowed in part. No order as to costs. In view of disposal of the main matter, I.A.1/2021 for release of amount both in MFA Nos.201004/2019 and 201005/2019 do not survive for consideration and the same stand disposed of.
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