of Karnataka & Ors Vs. Narasimhamurthy &
Ors  INSC 376 (11 August 1995)
K. Ramaswamy, K. Hansaria B.L. (J)
1996 AIR 90 1995 SCC (5) 524 JT 1995 (6) 375 1995 SCALE (4)853
O R D
order dated July 27,
1995 we had noted that
the 1st respondent after becoming major was duly served and was not represented
by any counsel nor did he appear in person.
adjourned the matter to enable the State to remove the defect of having
discharged the second respondent-father from guardianship of the first
respondent. To-day, we have passed an order discharging the second respondent
as guardian of the first respondent.
notification under Section 3 (1) of the Karnataka Acquisition of Land for Grant
of House Sites Act, 1972 (for short,`the Act') was published in the Gazette on February 3, 1975. When measurement of the land was
being taken, Venktappa, the second respondent, appeared before the authorities
concerned and represented that the first respondent, his minor son had
purchased the property from its owner, viz., Houlabi, wife of Khaja Sab.
Subsequently, he recommended to the Government to issue final notification
under Section 3 (4) of the Act. The first respondent, through his father, challenged
the notification in Writ Petition No.12705/84. Learned Single Judge and the
Division Bench of the High Court quashed the notification on the ground that
the name of the first respondent was not mentioned in the notification as
required by Section 3 (1) and that, therefore, the notification is vitiated by
an error apparent on the face of record. Thus, this appeal by special leave
against the Division Bench order dated February 19, 1986 passed in writ Appeal No. 332 of
question is whether the omission to mention the name of the 1st respondent in
the notification under Section 3 (1) vitiates its validity. Section 3 of the
Act reads as follows:
Acquisition of land. - (1) If at any time, in the opinion of the State
Government any land is required for the purpose of providing house sites to the
weaker sections of people who are houseless, the State Government may, by
notification, give notice of its intention to acquire such land.
the publication of a notification under sub-section (1), the State Government
shall serve notice upon the owner or where the owner is not the occupier, on
the occupier of the land and on all such persons known or believed to be
interested therein to show cause, within thirty days from the date of service
of the notice, why the land should not be acquired.
After considering the cause, if any, shown by the owner of the land and by any
other person interested therein, and after giving such owner and person an
opportunity of being heard, the State Government may pass such orders as it
After orders are passed under sub- section (3), where the State Government is
satisfied that any land should be acquired for the purpose specified in the
notification issued under sub- section (1) a declaration shall, by
notification, be made to that effect.
the publication in the Official Gazette of the declaration under sub- section
(4), the land shall vest absolutely in the State Government free from all
Where any land is vested in the State Government under sub-section (5), the
State Government may, by notice in writing, order any person who may be in
possession of the land to surrender or deliver possession thereof to the State
Government or any person duly authorised by it in this behalf within thirty
days of the service of the notice.
any person refuses or fails to comply with any order made under sub- section
(6), the State Government or any officer authorised by the State Government in
this behalf may take possession of the land and may for that purpose use such
force as may be necessary." A reading of Section 3 (1) clearly indicates
that if at any time State Government has the intention to acquire any land for
the purpose of providing house sites to the weaker sections of the people who
are houseless, the State Government may, by notification, give notice of its
intention to acquire such land. The notice as contemplated under sub-section
(1) per se does not envisage to include the name of the owner in the
notification published under sub-section (1) of Section 3 of the Act. What
Section 3 (1) envisages is that the notification should specify the
Government's intention to acquire the land which is mandatory. Sub-section (2)
of the Act postulates that on publication of a notification under sub-section
(1), the State Government shall serve notice upon the owner or where the owner
is not the occupier, upon the occupier of the land and all such persons known
or believed to be interested therein, to show cause within thirty days from the
date of service of notice as to why the land should not be acquired.
when the follow up action is being taken under sub-section (2) of Section 3,
notice shall be served upon the owner or where the owner is not the occupier,
on the occupier of the land and all persons known or believed to be interested
therein to show cause as to why the acquisition should not be proceeded with
for the public purpose. In other words, the opportunity shall be given to the
owner who is known by the entries in the mutation proceedings or the occupier
of the land or person/persons known or believed to be interested in the land.
Admittedly, Houlabi (the recorded owner) was given notice and she did not
appear. The mutation proceedings did not contain the name of the first
respondent nor was it effected in the record. Consequently, notice could not be
issued to the 1st respondent.
stated in the Special Leave Petition that at the time when the measurement was
being taken, obviously, after the publication of the notification under
sub-section (1) of section 3 of the Act, the second respondent had represented
to the competent authority that the first respondent was the owner. Thereafter,
it is also stated that he had not objected to the acquisition. No action had been
taken to have the name mutated in the revenue records except filing of the writ
petition challenging the validity of the notification.
to shelter is a fundamental right under Article 19 (1) of the Constitution. To
make the right meaningful to the poor, the State has to provide facilities and
opportunity to build house. Acquisition of the land to provide house sites to
the poor houseless is a public purpose as it is a constitutional duty of the
State to provide house sites to the poor. Admittedly, final notification under
sub-section (4) of Section 3 did contain the name of the first respondent.
these circumstances, the High Court was clearly in error in holding that the
notification published under sub-section 3 (1) of the Act was vitiated by error
of law on account of omission to have the name of the owner, viz., the first
respondent, published in the notification under Section 3 (1).
appeal is accordingly allowed and the writ petition stands dismissed but, in
the circumstances, without costs.