SUPREME COURT: In one of the prominent decisions, the Court while dealing with a Special Leave Petition regarding the possession of the land in question by the Government of Assam under the Urban Land (Ceiling and Regulation) Act, 1976 decided in favour of State and ruled that despite the repeal of the Principal Act of 1976 by the Urban Land (Ceiling and Regulation) Repeal Act, 1999, the possession that has been taken over by the State Government under the Principal Act will not be affected
The main issue raised by the appellant was that the possession of the declared entire surplus land was taken over by the Revenue Authority. Government of Assam on 27.11.2003 allotted a certain extent of land to Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA) for construction of an office building for itself and in the meanwhile the Urban Land (Ceiling and Regulation) Repeal Act, 1999 was notified which came into force in the State of Assam w.e.f. 06.08.2003. The respondents filed a petition before the Single Judge Bench of the Assam High Court challenging the possession of the allotted land which was handed over to GMDA. The Single Judge bench however dismissed the petition but subsequently it was allowed by the Division Bench of the same court and the possession of the disputed land to the given to the respondents.
Affirming the judgment given by the Single Judge Bench, the Court set aside the judgment of the division Bench of the High Court stating that, according Section 3(b) of the Repeal Act of 1999 which states that the repeal of the principal Act shall not affect the vesting of any vacant land under Section 10(3) the possession of which has been taken over by the State Government. Mr.P.K. Goswamy, appearing for the respondents argued that actual physical possession must be proved to have been taken over by the State Government and that it did not notify before taking over the possession. On this the court said that there was no prominent document to prove the actual possession and notifying before taking the possession was mere a academic exercise in this case. State of Assam v. Bhaskar Jyoti Sarma, 2014 SCC OnLine SC 946, Decided on 27/11/2014