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Report No. 138

4.17. A recent Gujarat case of 1989.-

It may be mentioned that in a recent Gujarat case, which involved the Municipal Corporation of Bhavnagar, one of the questions considered was as to the action that can be taken by a Municipal Corporation against alleged trespassers on public streets.1 In that case, it was con tended that the land in question was a public street and the petitioners had no right to use the same and they could be removed, by the Municipal Corporation. Examining this contention, the High Court (per Ravani, J.) stated the legal position in these terms:-

"The petitioners may not have any legal right to occupy land of the public street. At the most they would be in the position, of unauthorised occupants. Therefore, at the highest they may be described as persons who have committed civil trespass. But trespassers also have a right to be dealt with in just, fair and reasonable manner. They cannot be removed in high-handed, ruthless and inhuman manner, much more so when the authorities were restrained from taking action by a Court of competent jurisdiction."

1. Municipal Commissioner, Bhavnagar Municipal Corporation v. Nandumal, Letters Patent Appeal No. 246 of 1989, decided by A.P. Ravani and J.U. Mehta, JJ. (17 October, 1989) Gujarat High Court.

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