While considering petitions seeking re-conveyance of the lands which were acquired pursuant to the Notifications issued in the year 1986, the Madras High Court found that the lands were acquired long back and that being the factum, directed that the compensation already deposited is to be settled by identifying the original owner of the land.

A Single Judge Bench of Justice S.M Subramaniam observed that “Re-conveyance of acquired lands, at no circumstances, be claimed as an absolute right. The lands acquired may be utilized for some other public purposes, if the Government takes the policy decision”.

Advocate Manoharan S. Sundram appeared for the Petitioner, whereas Advocate T. Arunkumar appeared for the Respondent.

The brief facts of the case were that the lands were acquired for developing 'Ramapuram Neighborhood Housing Scheme in Porur Taluk' by the Government and handed over to the Tamil Nadu Housing Board for the purpose of developing the Neighborhood Scheme and Awards were passed in the year 1986 and possession was taken over by the Government in the year 2011.

The counsel for the respondents submitted that the petitioners were filing several litigations claiming ownership and they have not succeeded. The counsel further submitted that the Neighborhood Scheme was developed long before and certain portion of the land alone is yet to be taken up for possession on account of continuous litigations initiated between the few persons, who are all claiming to be the owners.

On the other hand, the counsel appearing on behalf of the erstwhile owners made a submission that they participated in the Award proceedings and the compensation determined was deposited in the Civil Court.

Thus, there is a dispute with reference to ownership of the subject properties, which were acquired for developing the Neighborhood Scheme in Porur Taluk.

After considering the submission, the Bench found that the acquisition proceedings were concluded long back and compensations determined were deposited.

Further, “on account of dispute between the various rival groups, the compensation was deposited before the appropriate Forum. Several litigations were instituted and now the acquired lands absolutely vest with the Government”, added the Bench.

That being the factum, the High Court directed the respondents to conduct survey of the acquired lands already vested with the Government and if there is any encroachments, the same is to be removed and the land is to be utilized for public purposes for which it was acquired in the manner known to law.

Accordingly, the High Court dismissed the petition.

Cause Title: V. Perumal Naicker and Ors. v. The Secretary to Government, Government of Tamil Nadu [Neutral Citation: 2023: MHC: 4394]

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