State of Punjab & Ors Vs. Babu Singh & Ors
 INSC 157 (28 February 1995)
Agrawal, S.C. (J) Agrawal, S.C. (J) Faizan Uddin (J)
1995 SCC Supl. (4) 256 1995 SCALE (2)385
After Shri R.B. Mehrotra was elevated to the Bench, notices have been sent to
the respondents to make alternative arrangements. All the notices have 38 been
returned. In some cases the acknowledgements have not been received Thus, we
deem that the notices have been duly served on the respondents. They do not
appear to be interested after the law has been settled by this Court and is
Notification under s.4(1) of the Land, Acquisition Act, 1894 (for short 'the
Act'), was published in the State Gazette on 11.12.1974 acquiring large extent
o land in Village Phullanwal, Tehsil and District Ludhiana for public purpose.
The Collector under s. II made his award on 27.9.1976 determining the
compensation between Rs.5,000/- and Rs.26,720/- per acre. On reference, by decree
dated 23.2.1978, the Addl. Dist. Judge enhanced the compensation varying
between Rs.7,000/- and Rs.40,000/- per acre. On further appeal, the Single
Judge enhanced the compensation between Rs.40,000/- and Rs.50,000/- per acre at
flat rate by judgment dated 3.9.1980. The L.P.A. was dismissed on 27.4.1981.
Thus, the proceedings were concluded prior to the Amendment Act has come into
force. Since the S.L.P. was dismissed on 5.9.1983 and some appeals were
subsequently disposed of by the High Court, applications under s. 151 and 152
were made in these matters for amending the decree or for awarding the benefits
of enhanced solatium, interest and additional amount available under ss.
23(1-A), 23(2), 28 of the Act as amended by L.A. (Amendment) Act 68 of 1984.
in question the orders of the High Court of Punjab & Haryana dated 15.7.1988,
these appeals by special leave have been filed.
is to be seen that the High Court acquires jurisdiction under s. 54 against the
enhanced compensation awarded by the reference court under s-18, under s.23(1)
with s.26 of the Act. The Court gets the jurisdiction only while enhancing or
declining to enhance the compensation to award higher compensation. While
enhancing the compensation "in addition" to the compensation under
s.23(1), the benefits enumerated under s.23(1-A) and s.23(2) also interest on
the enhanced compensation on the amount which in the opinion of the Court
"the Collector ought to have awarded in excess of the sum which the
Collector did award", can be ordered.
it would be clear that Civil Court or High Court gets jurisdiction when it
determines higher compensation under s.23(1) and not independently of the
is the view taken by this Court in C.A. No. 1607/78 titled State of Punjab v. Satinder
Bir Singh, disposed of on 22.2.1995.The same ratio applies to the facts in this
case, since as on the date when the judgment and decree was made by the High
Court, the law was that the High Court should award solatium at 15% and
interest at 6%. Payment of additional amount as contemplated under s.23(1-A)
cannot be made since the notification under s.4(1) was dated II.
and even the award of the District Court was dated 23.2.1978. Under these
circumstances, the L.A. Amendment Act 68 of 1984 has no application and there
is no error in the award or the decree as initially granted. The High Court was
clearly without jurisdiction in entertaining the applications under ss. ISI and
1 52 to award the additional benefits under the Amendment Act 68 of 1984 or to
amend the decrees already disposed of
appeals are accordingly 39 allowed. The petitions filed by the respondents
before the High Court stand dismissed. Since the respondents are not
represented, we make no order as to costs.