Updated: Friday August 24, 2012/AlJumaa Shawwal 07, 1433/Sukravara Bhadra 02, 1934, at 08:21:30 AM

FINANCIAL COMMISSIONER`S OFFICE, PUNJAB STANDING ORDER NO. 3

General Procedure of Revenue Officers and Courts

 

Last printed on 17th December, 1951.

Revised on March 21, 1980.

 

Note. In connection with the Standing Order, Chapters VI and XXIII of the Land Administration Manual Should be consulted. 

 

Contents

 

SN

Subject

Section A ----- Procedure of Revenue Officers

  1.  

Revenue Officer and Revenue Court distinguished

  1.  

Procedure of Revenue Officers

  1.  

 

  1.  

Procedure of Revenue Courts

Section B ---- Reception of plaints and applications

  1.  

Time and hour of presentation

  1.  

How filed

  1.  

Preliminary examination

  1.  

Responsibility regarding court-fees, stamps

  1.  

Disposal of unstamped petitions to the Financial Commissioners

Section C--- Examination of the Plaint

  1.  

Examination of the plaint

  1.  

Rules of pleadings noticed

  1.  

Joinder of parties and causes of action

  1.  

Scrutiny of plaint relating to agricultural land when plaintiffs is illiterate.

Section D---- Issue and Service of Processes

  1.  

Court to determine the form of summons

  1.  

Summons to the defendant

  1.  

Difference of Rules

  1.  

Service by post to the general rule

  1.  

Service in foreign territory generally

  1.  

Deleted

  1.  

Service in foreign territories, where no special arrangements exist

  1.  

21-30 Deleted

  1.  

Section 29 of the Code of Civil Procedur

  1.  

Interrogatories

  1.  

Cases in which Indian Officers or Soldiers are concerned

  1.  

Defendant to present a written statement

  1.  

Written statement to be accompanied by documents relied upon

  1.  

Plaintiff may also be called upon to file a written statement

  1.  

Each defendant should, as a rule, file separate written statement

  1.  

Set-off

  1.  

General and special rules as to written statements

Section F. ---- Settlement of Issues

  1.  

Necessity of framing correct issues

  1.  

Main foundation for the issues

  1.  

Procedure in framing issues

  1.  

The same

  1.  

The same

  1.  

Amendment of pleadings

  1.  

Discovery inspection and admission

  1.  

Drawing issue

  1.  

Burden of proof

Section G. --- Documentary Evidence

  1.  

Main provisions with regard to production of documents

  1.  

List of documents must be filed

  1.  

Documents should be produced at the first hearing

  1.  

Documents produced at a later stage

  1.  

Documents with a suspicious appearance or executed on unstamped or insufficiently stamped paper

  1.  

Distinction between mere production and admission in evidence

  1.  

Exhibiting of documents

  1.  

Documents how to be dealt with at the trial

  1.  

Documents admitted by the opposite party to be endorsed and numbered

  1.  

Inconvenience caused by neglect of foregoing directions

  1.  

Objections as to the admissibility or relevancy of the document

  1.  

Mode of proof of documents

  1.  

Examination of witnesses identifying documents

  1.  

Signature by the pen of another

  1.  

Proof of registered documents

  1.  

Certified extracts from Settlement records bearing on the case should be placed on the records

  1.  

Revision of record before judgment

  1.  

Return of documents

Section H -- Production of Revenue Records

  1.  

Requisitions of Appellate Courts to be sent to Deputy Commissioner

  1.  

Production by special Kanungo, or Patwari

  1.  

Duty of courts in such matters

  1.  

Duties of Appellate courts in calling for revenue records

  1.  

Inconvenience resulting from a neglect of the orders pointed out

  1.  

Deputy Commissioners to bring to the notice of the Financial Commissioner the case of any officer who systematically fails to comply with the orders on the subject

Section J ---- Attendance of Patwaris in Revenue Courts

  1.  

Patwaris not to be unnecessarily summoned

  1.  

Patwaris not to be summoned during Girdawari time

  1.  

Patwaris to be summoned through the Tehsildars. Courts to furnish patwaris with certificates showing attendance

  1.  

During Settlement, Patwaris to be examined by Commission

Section K ---- Commissions and Letters of Request

  1.  

General

  1.  

Expenses of Commissioner

  1.  

Issue of Commission to Revenue officials

  1.  

Issue of Commissions for local investigation, etc

  1.  

Duties of Commissioner so appointed

  1.  

Selection of Commissioners

  1.  

The same

  1.  

Deleted

  1.  

Letters of Requests to a foreign country

  1.  

The same

Section L. ---- Hearing of Suits, Adjournments, Examination of witnesses, etc.

  1.  

Notice of day of trial and adjournment

  1.  

Adjournments on payments of costs

  1.  

Witnesses should be examined on the day on which they attend

  1.  

Court to note when each party has used his case

  1.  

Examination of witnesses how to be conducted

  1.  

Cross-examination

  1.  

Re-examination

  1.  

Questions by the Court

Section M. --- Judgments and Decrees

  1.  

General instructions as to the judgment

  1.  

Evidence and final order to be recorded legibly

  1.  

Judgments must be written and announced within 14 dates from the date on which arguments and heard

  1.  

Decree

  1.  

Standard forms of decree prescribed in certain cases

  1.  

Powers of the Court to be disclosed

  1.  

Preparation of decrees

  1.  

Decrees based on compromise

Section N ---- Appeals

  1.  

General

  1.  

Copy of decree to be filed

  1.  

Vernacular copies of English orders not required

  1.  

Terms `Appellant` and ` Respondent` not be used

  1.  

Appellate files transmitted in vernacular

  1.  

rules are made by the Financial Commissioner

Section O. --- Abatement of Proceedings

  1.  

Death, Marriage or Insolvency of parties

Section P. --- Miscellaneous

  1.  

Rent Suits

  1.  

Notice of sale of right of occupancy

  1.  

Tenures to be accurately described

  1.  

Surveys and boundaries

  1.  

References to the High Court under Section 100

  1.  

Court hours, holidays and cause lists

  1.  

Petition Paper

  1.  

Preparation of Records, size and quality of paper

  1.  

Chronological abstract of order to be attached to certain files

Form of Chronological Abstract of Orders

  FINANCIAL COMMISSIONER`S OFFICE, PUNJAB STANDING ORDER NO. 3

General Procedure of Revenue Officers and Courts

 

Section A ----- Procedure of Revenue Officers 

1.  Revenue Officer and Revenue Court distinguished - A revenue court is simply a revenue officer acting in a judicial instead of an executive capacity. There are, therefore, the same classes of revenue courts as of revenue officers, and ordinarily a revenue officer of any grade is a revenue court of the same grade and his jurisdiction in the one capacity is co-extensive with his jurisdiction in the other. [Section 77(2) of Punjab Tenancy Act, XVI of 1887].

The distinction between revenue and civil courts is more one of agency, than of Procedure. With respect to their respective jurisdiction, paragraphs 792-810 of the Land Administration Manual and Chapter 2-B of the High Court Rules and Orders, Volume 1, should be consulted. 

2. Procedure of Revenue Officers - Land Revenue Rules 34 to 44 and Rules 2 to 11 of the Tenancy Rules prescribe the Procedure of Revenue Officers and should be consulted.  Briefly, they prescribe that the statements and pleadings made by or on behalf of parties to a revenue proceeding, whether oral or written, shall be as brief as the nature of the case admits; and shall not be argumentative. Every written application or statement filed by a party shall be drawn up and verified in the manner provided by the Civil Procedure Code for written statements in suits. In fixing dates, etc., the Revenue Officer is to follow the Procedure of revenue courts and the provisions of the Civil Procedure Code in respect of commissions also apply in the case of proceedings before a Revenue Officer. In proceedings before a Revenue Officer under the Punjab Tenancy Act, 1887, the Revenue Officer shall make with his own hand a brief memorandum of statements of parties and witnesses at the time when each statement is made. In every proceeding in which an order is passed on the merits after inquiry, the Revenue Officer making the order shall also record a brief statement of reasons on which it is founded. A revenue Officer may at his discretion award expenses of witnesses not exceeding the sum to which they would be entitled in civil courts. In proceedings in which costs have been incurred the final order shall apportion the costs, which will be recoverable in the manner prescribed in section 70 of the Land Revenue Act, 1887. Revenue Officer’s orders of ejectment from and delivery of possession of immovable property shall be enforced in the manner provided in the Code of Civil Procedure, and in enforcing of these orders Revenue Officer shall have all the powers in regard to contempts, resistance and the like which a civil court may exercise. 

3.   If the memorandum made by a Revenue Officer under Land Revenue Rule 40 or Tenancy Rule 7 or his orders is in English, he may have it translated into the official language of the court. Such a translation should invariably be made if the proceedings have not been conducted in the official language of the court.

 

4.         Procedure of Revenue Courts - General. Power to make special rules of Procedure for revenue courts is given by Section 88(1) of the Tenancy Act, but it has not been exercised. In the absence of any special rules the Procedure of the revenue courts is governed by the Code of Civil Procedure and the Rules and Orders of the High Court as far as these are applicable [Section 88(2) ibid.]

The instructions contained in Chapters 1-A to 1-H, 1-J to 1-L, 9, 10-A 10-B, 11-B and 14-E, of Volume 1, Chapter 7 of Volume IV of the High Court Rules and Orders, as amended from time to time should be followed with special care so far as they pertain to the Revenue Courts. Some of these instructions with the necessary modifications making them applicable to the Revenue Courts are reproduced in this Standing Order.

 

4-A.  The Revenue Officers/Revenue Courts should send history sheets of all the Revenue cases/revenue suits over one year old to the Financial Commissioner, Revenue, through the Commissioner of Division concerned indicating the reasons of delay. The history sheets shall be prepared as prescribed in the High Court rules and orders for submission to the High Court.

 

Section B ---- Reception of plaints and applications

 

5. Time and hour of presentation. Plaints and petitions should be received on every day, which is not an authorized holiday, during office hours.

 

6. How filed. Plaints and petitions must be filed, except, when otherwise specially provided by any law for the time being in force, by the party in person or by his recognized agent, or by a duly authorized and qualified legal practitioner. Recognized agents are defined in Order III, Rule 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure. As to appointment of a pleader, the provisions of Rule 4, ibid (C.P.C) should be carefully studied.

 

7. Preliminary examination. Every plaint or petition should, if possible, specify the provision of law under which it is presented. The Presiding Officer of the Court should note, or cause to the noted, on the back of the plaint, the date of presentation, and whether it has been presented by the plaintiff in person, or by his duly authorized agent or pleader. The court fees should be forthwith examined and cancelled in the manner prescribed in this behalf.

 

8. Responsibility regarding court-fees, stamps. The instructions contained in the High Court Rules and Orders, Volume IV, Chapters 4 and 5 should be observed mutatis mutandis by all revenue courts.

The Punjab Government have laid it down that the ministerial officials of the court concerned. i.e., the Superintendent Grade III in the case of Commissioner and the Reader in the case of Deputy Commissioner and other courts, shall be personally responsible for seeing that plaints and petitions are properly stamped in all simple and undisputed cases. In cases of doubt regarding the correctness of the court- fee due, he should take the orders of the Presiding Officer. Personal responsibility shall be enforced against the ministerial officer in all cases that he failed to refer to the Presiding Officer for orders, and against the Presiding Officer in other cases. This shall, however, be subject to the proviso that personal responsibility should only be enforced against the Presiding or Ministerial Officer, as may be, where obvious mistakes were made and not in cases in which a genuine doubt was possible regarding the correctness of the court- fee due.

The Deputy Commissioner should impress upon the Presiding Officer of Subordinate Revenue Courts and their Readers, etc., their personal responsibility in this matter and make them understand that as a consequence of this responsibility all Government losses in Stamp Revenue will be dealt with in accordance with the F.D. Memo No. 30161-F, dated 30th September, 1929, and the provisions contained in the Punjab Stamp Losses and Defalcation Rules, 1935.

Serious notice should be taken of failure to cancel stamps by punching. Entries should be made in character rolls of officials who are negligent in this respect.

 

9. Disposal of unstamped petitions to the Financial Commissioners. When an unstamped petition is presented to the Financial Commissioner which is to be transferred to a sub-ordinate officer, a slip will be attached to the effect that no action should be taken on the petition until it is stamped with the prescribed Courts fees stamp under Schedule II (i) (c) of the Court-Fees Act. VII of 1870.

 

Section C--- Examination of the Plaint

 

10. Examination of the plaint - On the presentation or receipt of a plaint, the court should examine it with special reference to the following points viz.: -

(i)          whether the name of court to which the suit is brought is given in the plaint [Order VII, rule 1 (a)];

(ii)         whether the plaint contains the name, description and place of residence of the plaintiff [Order VII, rule 1 (b)];

(iii)        whether it contains the name, description and place of residence of the defendant, so far as they can be ascertained [Order VII, rule 1 (c)];

(iv)        whether any of the parties to the suit are minors and, if so, whether they are properly represented [Order VII, rule 1(d)];

(v)         whether it contains the facts constituting the cause of action and when it arose [Order VII, rule1 (e)];

(vi)        whether the suit is within the jurisdiction of the court or must be returned for presentation to the proper court [Order VII, rule 1(f) and 10];

(vii)       whether the plaint states the relief which the plaintiff claims [Order VII, rule 1(g)];

(viii)      whether it contains the amount allowed or relinquished if the plaintiff has allowed a set off or relinquished a portion of his claim [Order VII, rule 1(h)];

(ix)        whether it contains a statement of the value of the subject-matter of the suit for the purpose of jurisdiction and or court-fees so far as the case admits [Order VII, rule 1(i)];

(x)         whether there is, prima facie, any non-joinder or mis-joinder of parties, or mis-joinder of causes of action;

(xi)        whether the plaint is duly signed and verified;

(xii)       whether the plaint is liable to be rejected for any of the reasons given in Order VII, Rule11;

(xiii)      whether the documents attached to the plaint (if any) are accompanied by lists in the prescribed form and are in order;

(xiv)      whether the plaintiff has filed a proceeding containing his address for service during the litigation as required by Rule 19 of Order VII as framed by the High Court;

 (xv)      instructions contained in paragraph 11 below should also be borne in mind at the time of the examination of plaints.

 

11. Rules of pleadings noticed. The provisions of the Code with regard to the pleadings (which term includes the plaint and written statements of parties) should be carefully studied. The principal rules of pleadings may be briefly stated as follows: -

a)      The whole case must be stated in the pleadings, that is to say all material facts must be stated (Order VI, Rule 2);

b)      Only material facts are to be stated. The evidence by which they are to be proved is not be stated (Order VI, Rules 2, 10, 11,and 12);

c)      The facts are to be stated concisely;

d)      Every pleading is to be signed by the party or person duly authorised by the party, and also by his pleader, if any (Order VI, Rule 14);

e)      Save as otherwise provided for by law for time being in force, every pleading is to be verified at the foot by the party or by one of the parties pleading (Order VI, Rule 15);

f)        The person verifying the pleading is bound to state by reference to the numbered paragraphs of the pleading what he verifies of his own knowledge, and what he verifies upon information received and believed to be true [Order VI, Rule 15(2)];

g)      It is obligatory that the verification should be signed by the person making it stating the date on which and the place at which it was signed [Order VI, Rule 15(3)];

h)      It is not necessary to allege the performance of any condition precedent; an averment of performance is implied in every pleading (Order VI, Rule 6);

i)        It is not necessary to set out the whole or any part of a document unless the precise words, thereof are necessary. It is sufficient to state the effect of the document as briefly as possible (Order VI, Rule 9);

j)        It is not necessary to allege a matter of fact which the law presumes, or as to which the burden of proof lies on the other side (Order VI, Rule 13);

k)      When misrepresentation, fraud, undue influence, etc., are pleaded, necessary particulars must always be given (Order VI, Rule 4);

l)        When a suit is prima facie time-barred, the ground on which exemption is claimed must be stated (Order VII, Rule 6); 

If the plaint is prolix or indefinite or omits to give the necessary particulars or to specify the relief claimed precisely or is defective in any other respect it should be returned to the party or his counsel for such amendment as may be necessary in the actual presence of the Presiding Officer after he has signed the endorsement. The Court has wide Powers in this respect (see Order VI, Rules 5, 16 and 17). Where amendment is directed, an order should be recorded by the court indicating the particulars about the necessary amendment and fixing a date for filing the amended plaint.

 

12. Joinder of parties and causes of action. When the plaintiffs or defendants are more than one, the plaint should be examined with a view to see, if there is prima facie any misjoinder of parties or causes of action.

(i)                      It should appear in the plaint that the persons (if more than one), who sue together as plaintiffs, all, either jointly, severally, or in the alternative, claim the right which is the object of the suit to vindicate. If all the persons jointly entitled to the right, which according to the plaint, has been infringed, cannot be got to sue together, this fact should be stated in the plaint, together with the grounds of refusal, if known. If the plaintiff wishes to use on behalf of or, for the benefit of such persons, he must apply for the permission of the Court under Order 1, Rule 8(1), Civil Procedure Code.

(ii)                     Similarly, it should appear in the plaint that the right to the relief claimed exists against all the defendants either jointly severally or, in the alternative, in respect of the subject-matter in dispute. If the cause for suing one defendant is different from that for suing another, the plaint should be returned for amendment on the ground that the plaintiff has joined causes of action which ought not to be joined in the same suit. Different causes of action against different defendants or groups of defendants cannot be brought into one suit. Under Order 1, Rule 5, however, it is not necessary that every defendant should be interested as to all the reliefs claimed in any suit against him.

(iii)                   Order II, Rule 3, of the Code of Civil Procedure, only permits a plaintiff to unite in the same suit several causes of action against the same defendant or the same defendants jointly. It follows, therefore, that where the defendants are not jointly liable for the several sums which the plaintiff claims from each, or for other relief sought, the provisions of Order II, Rule 3 cannot be applied, and each distinct cause of action must form the subject of a separate suit. Several plaintiffs having distinct causes of action against the same defendant or defendants cannot join in one suit.

(iv)                   The general rule to be observed is that, while no suit may be defeated by mere misjoinder of parties and the rights of the parties actually before the Court may always be disposed of, distinct causes of action can only be joined in one suit where the parties are identical, subject to the provisions of Order II, Rules 4 and 5 and section 15 to 25, of the Code of Civil Procedure.

(v)                    In suits which cannot be properly disposed of unless all persons interested in the matter are before the Court Order 1, Rules 8(2) and 10(2) of the Code enable the Court to add necessary parties, when it discovers that they have been omitted by the plaintiff.

 

13.             Scrutiny of plaint relating to agricultural land when plaintiffs is illiterate - If the plaint relates to agricultural land and the plaintiff is illiterate, it should be scrutinised with special care, according to the following directions: -

Every such plaint shall be accompanied by a statement, in the prescribed form, setting forth the particulars relating thereto recorded in the settlement record and in the last jamabandi. It should also include a copy of Khasra Girdawari of the harvest concerned if the suit is under the Punjab Tenancy Act. This statement shall be verified by the signature of the Patwari of the Circle in which the land concerned is situate. Where by reason of partition, river action or other cause, the entries in the settlement record and in the last jamabandi do not accord, a brief explanation of the reason should be given in the column of remarks. Where the suit is for a specific plot with definite boundaries, it shall also be accompanied by a map, drawn to scale, showing clearly the specific plot claimed, or in relation to which the decree is to be made, and so much of the fields adjoining it, also drawn to scale, as may be sufficient to facilitate identification. The specific plot and adjoining fields shall be numbered in accordance with the statement and the map shall be certified as correct by the Patwari or other person who prepared it. Where, however, the suit is for the whole of one or more khasra numbers as shown in the Settlement map, or a share in such numbers, and not for a specific portion thereof no map will be required unless it is necessary for other reasons to show the boundaries of such Khasra numbers.

 

 

Section D---- Issue and Service of Processes

 

14. Court to determine the form of summons. In order V, Rule 5 of the Code of Civil Procedure, it is laid down that the Court shall determine, at the time of issuing the summons, whether it shall be for the settlement of issues only, or for the final disposal of the suit, and the summons shall contain a direction accordingly. Thus, the question of what form of summons is to be issued is one which the Court is bound to consider and determine in each particular case.

 

15. Summons to the defendant. Summons should be clearly and legibly  written and signed and the seal of the Court must be affixed. Order V, Rule 1(3) of the Code requires that the summons shall be signed by the judge or such officer as he appoints. In Courts, provided with Tehsildar Peshi/Private Secretary (Judicial) or Superintendents Grades III and IV or a Reader, he may be authorized to sign summonses; in all other Courts the Presiding Officer should himself sign them. The signature should in all cases be fully and legibly written. The summons must be framed so as to require the defendant to produce any document called for by the plaintiff, or on which the defendant intends to rely in support of his own case, and must state whether the case is fixed for the settlement of issues only, or for final disposal. It must also have attached thereto one of the copies of concise statements of the plaint which the plaintiff is bound to file with the plaint. Before issuing the summons, the Court should satisfy itself that the form selected is that appropriate to the order made under Order V, Rule 5, of the Code.

No Court can rightly proceed to hear a suit ex parte until it has been proved to the satisfaction of such Court that the summons to the defendant to appear has been duly served, that is, has been served strictly in such manner as the law provides. The nature of the proof of service which the Court ought to require in such cases has been noticed in Rule 7, Chapter 1-D, of the High Court Rules and Orders, Volume 1.

 

16.             The Revenue Courts should note that the rules for the service of summons on a person residing within or without India, differ. The two sets of Rules are contained in Rules 21-23 and Rules 25-26, Order V, of the Civil Procedure Code, which should be carefully studied.

 

(i) Service within India. If the process has to be served within the jurisdiction of another Court but within the same district, the agencies located at tehsils will be employed, the processes being transmitted by post, from one agency to another, if the process has to be served in another district, but within the state, it should be transmitted by post to the Collector through the Collector for services and return. But no Court should refuse to serve any process received for service within its jurisdiction from a Court in another district or State, merely by reason of the process not having been sent through the Collector. In issuing processes to districts in other States, they should be forwarded for execution to the Deputy Commissioner of the district in which service of such process is desired, except where they are to be served within one of the Presidency towns (Order V, Rule 22, Civil Procedure Code) when they should be transmitted for service to the Judge of the Court of Small Causes.

(ii) Service by post. The attention of the Revenue Officers and Revenue Courts is specially drawn to the provisions of section 20 of the Punjab Land Revenue Act and section 90 of the Punjab Tenancy Act, 1887, under which a summons may be served by registered post. This mode of service has proved speedy and useful and may be freely resorted to in addition to, or in substitution for, any other mode.

(iii) The Financial Commissioner is pleased to make the following rules under section 155(1) (C) of the Punjab Land Revenue Act regarding service of Revenue Processes: -

 

RULES

 

           (1) Rules regarding service of revenue processes. Notwithstanding the separation of Revenue from the Civil Courts; Revenue Courts and Revenue Officers shall send the processes issued by them, for which process fee is charged, to the Civil process serving agency for service and execution.

     (2) The control over income derived from process-fees in all Revenue Courts and Revenue Offices and the expenditure on establishment, etc., from this source, shall be retained by the High Court. The Commissioner and the Subordinate Revenue Courts and Officers shall maintain the registers and accounts prescribed by the Rules and Orders of the High Court and submit the annual returns in the prescribed form.

     (3) The Revenue Courts and Officers of the Punjab are for the purpose of levying process-fees divided into three grades as shown in the annexed table: -

Grade

 

             Revenue Courts

First

  

   Financial Commissioners.

Second

  

  Commissioners.

Third

  

  Collectors and Assistant Collectors.

The process fee shall be levied in accordance with the rules framed by the High Court of Punjab State under section 20(1) (ii) of the Court Fees Act, 1870, as contained in Chapter 5-B of the High Court Rules and Orders, Volume IV.

Service of the processes of the Courts in India in places beyond India:

 

17. Service by post to the general rule. Order V, Rule 25, of the Code of Civil Procedure, provides generally, that if that if the defendant resides out of India and has no agent in India empowered to accept the service, the summons shall be addressed to the defendant at the place where he is residing, and forwarded to him by post, if there be postal communication between such place and the place where the Court is situate. In practice, all summonses so sent should, where possible, be sent by registered post, and should be “registered acknowledgment due”

 

18. Service in foreign territory generally. Provisions for service of summonses in foreign territory are contained in Order V, Rule 26. Under this rule the State Government is also empowered to declare by notification that any summons issued by the Court of the State may be served by any court in foreign territory although such Court has not been established or continued by the Central Government. This rule is inapplicable to British or other territories not under or connected with the Indian Government, such as Ceylon, the Straits Settlement, and similar places. The general direction contained in Order V, Rule 25, would apply in all such cases (see above paragraph.)

 

19. Deleted.

 

20. Service in foreign territories, where no special arrangements exist. When service by post under Order V, Rule 25, has failed and it is desired to proceed under Order V, Rule 26, Civil Procedure Code, the summons should be submitted to the Commissioner of the Division for transmission to the State Government. They should never be sent direct to the Court of Foreign territories. Before issuing summons, the Court should enquires from the postal authorities the time that it normally takes for a letter to get to the required place the must then double that time and add not less than two months to it in fixing the date of hearing for the case. But in no case should less than 4 months be allowed for such services.

In forwarding such summonses to Collectors, for transmission to the Commissioner, subordinate Courts must certify that service by post has been tried and failed and also state in what manner it has failed.

On receipt of summonses from subordinate Courts, it will be the duty of the Superintendent Grade IV or Reader to the Collector before transmitting the same to the Commissioner, to examine the summonses carefully and bring the defect, if any to the notice of the Collector, who should send the same back for correction if necessary to the Court issuing the summonses.

Summonses, notices and other judicial documents intended for service in foreign countries should always be accompanied by translations in the language of the country in which service is to be effected, at the expenses of the party at whose instance summonses, etc., are issued. Wherever possible, summonses should be typewritten in English and must be checked and legibly signed by the Presiding Officer of the Court who will be held personally responsible for their nearness and accuracy.

 

Paras 21-30. Deleted.

 

Other Countries

31. Section 29 of the Code of Civil Procedure lays down that the Summonses and other processes issued by ---

(a)                    any Civil or Revenue Court established in any part of India to which the provisions of Code of Civil Procedure do not extend; or

(b)                    any Civil or Revenue Court established or continued by the authority of the Central Government outside India; or

(c)                    any other Civil or revenue Court outside India to which the Central Government has, by notification in the Official Gazette, declared the provisions of this section to apply,

may be sent to the Courts in the territories to which this code extends and served as if they were summonses issued by such Courts. It has further been laid down on Order V, Rule 26(b) that where the Central Government, by notification in the Official Gazette, declare in respect of ay Court situate in any such territory, that service by such Court of any summonses shall be deemed to be valid service.

Apart from such arrangements Courts in India must be guided by Order V, Rules 25 and 26 of the Code of Civil Procedure.

 

32. Interrogatories. In the case of all foreign territories interrogatories should be transmitted through the channels prescribed for summonses.

 

33. Cases in which Indian Officers or Soldiers are concerned. Unnecessary delay in the cases in which Indian officers or soldiers or members of the Military Reserves are concerned should be avoided, and the attention of Revenue Officers is drawn to Chapters 6-A administration 6-B of the High Court Rules and Orders, Volume 1. In disposing also of Revenue business, such as partition cases and appointments of lambardars, in which one of the parties to the case is an Indian officer or soldier on leave for a limited period, this fact should be taken into consideration by the Revenue Officer in fixing the order in which the cases shall be set down for hearing and an attempt should be made to decide such cases within the period for which the officer or soldier has obtained leave to be present at the hearing.

 

34. Defendant to present a written statement. It is laid down in Order VIII, Rule I, of Code of Civil Procedure, that a defendant may, and if so required by the court shall, at or before the first hearing or within such time as the Court may permit, present a written statement of his defence. Ordinarily it is advisable to require which written statement and the Court should at the time of issuing summons call for a written statement from the defendant of the date fixed for his appearance. In most cases, there should be no difficulty in presenting such written statement on the date fixed, and no adjournment should be given for the purpose except for good cause shown, and in proper cases, costs should be awarded to the opposite side. Laxity in granting adjournments for the purpose of filing written statements should be avoided, and it should be noted that in extreme cases contumacious refusal to comply with the Court’s order is liable to be dealt with under order VIII, Rule 10, Civil Procedure Code.

 

35. Written statement to be accompanied by documents relied upon. Rule 1 of Order VIII (as amended by the High Court) further requires the defendant to produce with the written statement all documents in his possession or power on which he bases his defence or claim to set-off, if any. If he relies in support of his case on any other documents, not in his possession or power, he must annex a list thereof to the written statement. With the written statement, the defendant must also file his address for service during the litigation.

 

36. Plaintiff may also be called upon to file a written statement. When the defendant has filed a written statement, the Court may call upon the plaintiff to file a written statement in reply. Under Order VIII, Rule 9 the Court has power to call upon both parties to file written statements at any time and this power should be freely used for elucidating the pleas when necessary, especially in complicated cases. In simple cases, however, examination of the parties, after the defendant has filed his written statement, is generally found to be sufficient.

 

37. Each defendant should, as a rule, file separate written statement. In all cases where there are several defendants the Court should, as a rule, take a separate written statement from each defendant, unless the defences of any defendants filing a joint written statement are identical in all respects. There may be different defences based upon a variety of circumstances and these should not be allowed to be mixed up together in a single statement merely because all the defendants deny the plaintiff’s claim.

 

38. Set-off. Written statement called from the parties may be on plain paper, but when the defendant claims in his written statements any sum by way of set-off under Order VIII, Rule 6, Civil Procedure Code, the statement must be stamped in the same manner as plaint in a suit for the recovery of that sum.

 

39. General and special rules as to written statements. A ‘written statement’ is included in the definition of ‘pleading (vide Order VI, Rule 1)’, and should conform to the general rules of pleading given in order VI as well as the special rules with regard to written statements in Order VIII. All admissions and denials of facts should be specific and precise and not evasive or ambiguous. When allegations of fraud, etc., are set, the particulars should be fully given. When any legal provisions is relied on, not only the provision of law relied upon should be mentioned, but also the facts making it applicable should be stated. For instance, when a plea of res-judicata is raised, not only the provision of law (e.g. section 11 of the Civil Procedure Code) should be mentioned, but also the particulars of the previous suit which is alleged to bar the suit, be given.

 

 

Section F. ---- Settlement of Issues

 

40 Necessity of framing correct issues. The trail of the suit falls into two broad divisions, --- the first part leading up to and including the framing of issues and the second consisting of the hearing of the evidence produced by the parties on those issues and the decision thereof. Issues are material propositions of facts and law, which are in controversy between the parties and the correct decision of a suit naturally depends on the correct determination of these proposition. The utmost care and attention, is, therefore, needed in ascertaining the real matters in dispute between the parties and fixing the issues in precise terms. In most cases the main difficulty of the trail is overcome when the correct issues are framed. A few hours spent by the Court at the outset in studying and elucidating the pleadings may mean a saving of several days, if not weeks, in the later stages of the trial. In some Courts, the framing of issues is left to the pleaders of the parties concerned. This practice is illegal and must cease.

In suits brought under the Punjab Tenancy Act, considerable reliance has to be placed on the revenue records, and the failure of the court of scrutinize the entries recorded in the latest jamabandi and khasra girdawari of the harvest concerned (abstracts of which are produced with the plaints) often leads to the framing of wrong issues or to laying the burden of proof on the wrong party. Such mistakes subsequently cause unnecessary delay in the disposal of cases and financial loss to the parties. It is, therefore, of great importance that the entries recorded in the columns of ownership and cultivation of the revenue records should be carefully examined before framing the issues and allotting the burden of proof.

 

41. Main foundation for the issues. The main foundation for the issues is supplied by the pleadings of the parties, viz., the plaint and the written statements. But owing to the ignorance of the parties or other reasons, it is frequently found that the facts are stated neither correctly nor clearly in the pleadings. The Code gives ample powers to the Court to elucidate the pleadings by different methods prescribed in Orders X, XI and XII of the Code and in most cases it is essential to do so, before framing the issues.

 

42. Procedure in framing issues. On the date fixed for the settlement of issues, the Court should, therefore, carefully examine the pleadings of the parties and see whether, allegations of the fact made by each party are either admitted or denied by the opposite party, as they ought to be. If any allegations of fact are not so admitted or denied in the pleadings of any party, either expressly or by clear implication, the court should proceed to question the party or his pleader and record categorically his admission or denial of those allegations (Order X, RuleI).

 

43.The same. Order X, Rule 2, of the Code empowers the Court at the first or any subsequent hearing to examine any party appearing in person or present in Court or any person, accompanying him, who is able to answer all material questions relating to the suit. This is a most valuable provision, and if properly used, results frequently in saving a lot of time. To use it properly the Court should begin by studying the pleas and recording the admissions and denials of the parties under Order X, Rule I, as stated above. The Court will then be in a position to ascertain what facts need further elucidation by examination of the parties. The parties should then be examined alternatively on all such points and the process of examination continued until all the matters in conflict and especially matters of facts are clearly brought to a focus. When there are more defendants than one, they should be examined separately so as to avoid any confusion between their respective defences.

 

44. The same. In examining the parties or their pleaders, the Court should insist on a detailed and accurate statement of facts. A brief or vague oral plea, e.g., that the suit is barred by limitation, or by the rule or res-judicata, should not be received without a full statement of the material facts and the provision of law on which the plea is based. Similarly, when fraud, collusion, custom, misjoinder, estoppel, etc., is pleaded, the facts on which the pleas are based should be fully elucidated. Any inclination of a party or his pleader to evade straightforward answers or make objections or pleas which appear to the Court to be frivolous, can be promptly met, when necessary, by an order for a further written statement on payment of costs of the opposite party, on that part of the case at any rate, if he failed to substantiate his allegations.

 

45. Amendment of pleadings. The examination of the parties frequently discloses that the pleadings in the plaint or written statement are not correctly stated. In such cases, these should be ordered to be amended and the amendment initialed by the party concerned. If any misjoinder or multifariousness is discovered, the Court should take action to have the defect removed.

 

46. Discovery ‘inspection’ and ‘admission’. The provisions of Order XI and Order XII of the Code with regard to ‘discovery and inspection’ and ‘admissions’ are also very important for the purpose of ascertaining the precise cases of the parties and narrowing down the field of controversy.

These provisions are little understood and are not utilized at present as much as they should be. The Courts should make themselves conversant with them and encourage the parties to make use of them, especially in long and intricate cases. It should be noted that under Section 30 of the Code, the Court has power to make orders suo motu, as regards delivery of interrogatories for the purpose of discovery, inspection and admission. If these provisions are properly used, they will result in a saving of considerable cost to the parties and also curtail the duration of the trial.

 

47. Drawing issue. When the pleadings have thus been exhausted and the Court has before it the plaint, pleas, written statements, admissions and denials recorded under Order X, Rule 1, examination of parties recorded under Order X, Rule 2, and admission of facts or documents, made under Order XII of the Code, it will be in a position to frame correctly the issues upon the points actually in dispute between the parties. Each issue should state in interrogative form one point in dispute. Every issue should form a single question and as far as possible issue should not be put in an alternative form. In other words each issue should contain a definite proposition of fact or law which one party avers and the other denies. An issue in the form, so often seen, of a group of confused questions is no issue at all, and is productive of nothing but confusion at the trial. A double or alternative issue generally indicates that the court does not see clearly on which side or in what manner the true issue arises, and on whom the burden of proof should lie, and an issue in general terms such as ‘Is the plaintiff entitled to a decree’ is meaningless. If there are more defendants than one who make separate answers to the claim the Court should not against each issue the defendant or defendants between whom and the plaintiff the issue arises.

 

48. Burden of proof. The burden of proof as to each issue should be carefully determined and the name of the party on whom the burden lies, stated opposite to the issue.

Section G. --- Documentary Evidence

 

49. Main provisions with regard to production of documents. The main provisions of the Code with regard to the production of documents by the parties are as follows: -

a)      According to Order VII, Rule 14, when the plaintiff sues upon a document in his possession of power, he shall produce it in Court when the plaint is presented and deliver the documents itself or a copy thereof to be filed with the plaint. If he relies on any other documents, whether in his possession or power or not, as evidence in support of his case he shall enter such documents in a list to be annexed to the plaint. If the documents are not so produced or entered in the list, they cannot be proved at a later stage without the leave of the Court, unless they fall within the exception given in sub-rule 2 of Rule 18 of Order VII.

b)      Order VIII, Rule 1 (as amended by the High Court), similarly required the defendant to produce with his written statement any documents upon which his defence or claim to set-off is founded. The defendant must also annex to the written statement a list of all documents on which he intends to rely ---- whether in his possession or power or not in support of his defence or claim to set-off.

c)      Order XIII, Rule 1, lays down that the parties shall produce at the first hearing of the suit documentary evidence of every description in their possession or power on which they intend to rely, and which has not been already filed, in Court and all documents which the Court has ordered to be produced. If the documents are not so produced at the first hearing they cannot be produced at the later stage unless good cause is shown to the satisfaction of the Court.

 

 

50. List of documents must be filed. Whenever any documents are produced by the parties in the Course of a suit, whether with the plaint or written statement, or at a later stage, they must always be accompanied by a list in the form given below. In column 3, the Court should note the manner, in which the document was dealt with, i.e., whether it was admitted in evidence or rejected and returned to the party concerned, or impounded, as the case may be.

List of documents produced by plaintiff/defendant under Order XIII, Rule 1, C.P.C.

IN THE COURT OF                                               AT                                           DISTRICT.

SUIT TO   ………………………………… of 19

……………………………………………… Plaintiff

                                                                     Versus

………………………………………………Defendant.

List of documents produced with the plaint (or at first hearing) on behalf of plaintiff (or defendant).

 

 

 

This list was filed by                                this                              day of               19

 

SI.

No.

 

Description

and date,

if any, of the

document

 

What the document is intended to prove

 

If brought on the record, the exhibit mark put on the document

 

If rejected, date or return to party, and signature of party or pleader to whom the document was returned

 

 

 

Remarks

1

         2

         3

4

 

       5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                     

Signature of party or pleader    producing the list

Note. ---- Judicial Officers should instructed all petition-writers practicing in their Courts to prepare lists in the above form for all documents intended to be produced in Court.

 

51. Documents should be produced at the first hearing. The Court should formally call upon the parties at the first hearing to produce their documents and should make a note that it has done so. Forms have been prescribed by the High Court for the examination of the parties with reference to their documents and these should be invariably used. If the printed forms are not at any time available, the questions prescribed invariably used. If the printed forms are not any time available, the questions prescribed therein should be asked and the questions as well as the answers noted. If these instructions are strictly carried out, there will be no justification for plea frequently put forward by ignorant litigants with regard to the late production of a document that they had brought the documents at the first hearing but were not called upon to produce it.

 

52. Documents produced at a later stage. The above provisions as regards the production of the documents at the at the initial stage of a suit are intended to minimize the chances of fabrication of documentary evidence during the course of the suit as well as to give the earliest possible the notice to each party of the documentary evidence relied upon by the opposite party. These provisions should, therefore, be strictly observed and if any document is tendered at a later stage, the Court should consider carefully the nature of the document sought to be produced (e.g., whether there is any suspicion about its genuineness or not) and the reasons given for its non-production at the proper stage, before admitting it. The fact of a document being in possession of a servant or agent of a party on whose behalf it is tendered is not itself a sufficient reason for allowing the document to be produced after the time, prescribed by Order XIII, Rule 1. The Court must always record its reasons for admission of the document in such cases, if it decides to admit it (Order XIII, Rule 2).

 

53. Documents with a suspicious appearance or executed on unstamped or insufficiently stamped paper. Should any document which has been partially erased or interlined, or which otherwise presents a suspicious appearance, be presented at any time in the course of proceedings a note should be made of the fact and, should a well-founded suspicion of fraudulent alteration of forgery subsequently arise, the document should be impounded under Order XIII, Rule 8 and action taken under sections 340, 342 and 344 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. Similarly, should any document be presented which appears to have been executed on unstamped paper or insufficiently stamped paper, action should be taken under sections 33 and 35 of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899.

 

54. Distinction between mere production and admission in evidence.  Courts should be careful to distinguish between mere production of documents and their ‘admission in evidence’ after being either ‘admitted’ by the opposite party or ‘proved’ according to law. When documents are ‘produced’ by the parties they are only temporarily placed on the record subject to their being ‘admitted in evidence’ in evidence in due course. Only documents which are duly ‘admitted in evidence’ form a part of the record while the rest must be returned to the parties producing them (Order XIII, Rule 7).

 

55. Exhibiting of documents. Every document ‘admitted in evidence’ must be endorsed and signed or initialed by the Judge in the manner required by Order XIII, Rule 4, and marked with an exhibit number. Documents produced by the plaintiff may be conveniently marked as Ex. P.1., Ex. P.2, etc., while those produced by the defendant as Ex. D-1, D-2, D-3, etc. to ensure strict compliance with the provisions of Order XIII, Rule 4 (the importance of which has been emphasized by their Lordships of the Privy Council on more than one occasion, e.g., Indian Law Reports 38 Allahabad 627 at page 633) each Revenue Court should be supplied with a rubber stamp in the following form: -

                         Suit No.                                                                        of                        19

Title                          Plaintiff                          Versus                                                   Defendant

Produced by

On the                                                              day of                                                       19

Nature of document

Stamp duty for Rs.                                                                                                P. (is not) correct

Admitted as Exhibit No.                                                                                                   Collector.        

 

The entries in the above form should be filled in at the time when the document is admitted in evidence under the signature of the Revenue Officer. Details as to the nature of the document and the stamp duty paid upon it are required to be entered in order that Courts may not neglect the duties imposed on them by section 33 of the Indian Stamp Act II of 1899. Revenue Officers should see that all Courts subordinate to them are supplied with these stamps.

 

56. Documents how to be dealt with at the trial. Every document which a party intends to use as evidence against his opponent, must be formally tendered by him in evidence in the course of proving his case. If a document has been placed on the record it can be referred to for the purpose. If it is not on the record, it must be called from and produced by, the person in whose custody it is.

No application for the production of a Court record should be entertained unless it is supported by an affidavit and the Court is satisfied that the production of the original is necessary (Order XIII, Rule 10).

 

57. Documents admitted by the opposite party to be endorsed and numbered. (a) If the opponent does not object to the document being admitted in evidence an endorsement to the effect must be made by the revenue officer with his own hand and, if the document is not such as is forbidden by the legislature to be used as evidence, the revenue officer will admit it, cause it, or so much of it as the parties may desire, to be read and then endorse and stamp it in the manner already described. Otherwise it must be proved in accordance with law before it is so endorsed and stamped. The endorsement and stamp will show that the document is proved. It is to be remembered that the word ‘proved’ used in the context here means ‘that judicial evidence has been led about it’ and does not imply ‘proof’ in an absolute sense.

(b) Document object to be the opposite party. If, on the document being tendered, the opposite party objects to its being admitted in evidence two questions commonly arise: first, whether the documents is authentic, or, in other words, is that which the party tendering it represents it to be; and second, whether supposing it to be authentic, it is legally admissible in evidence as against the party who is sought to be effected by it. The latter question, in general, is a matter or argument only; but the first must, as a rule, be supported by such testimony as the party can adduce. It may be noted here, that, under Order XII, Rule 2, of the Code of Civil Procedure, either party may, by a notice through the Court invite the other party t inspect the documents specified in the notice at a specified time the place, and admit, within forty-eight hours from the time fixed for such inspection the genuineness of such documents: that unless such notice be given no costs of proving the document should ordinarily be allowed; and that if on the other hand, notice is given and the admission is, without sufficient cause, withheld, the party refusing to admit the document must bear the expense of proving it whatever may be the result of the suit.

 

58. Inconvenience caused by neglect of foregoing directions. Owing to the neglect of the foregoing directions as regards endorsing and stamping of documents it is often impossible to say what papers on the file constitute the true record; copies of extracts from public or private records or accounts, referred to in the judgment as admitted in evidence, are often found to be not ‘proved’ according to law, and sometimes altogether absent.

 

59. Objections as to the admissibility or relevancy of the document. All legal objections as to the admissibility of a document should, as far as possible, be promptly disposed of, and the Court should carefully note the objection raised and the decision thereon.

The Court is also bound to consider, suo motu, whether any document sought to be proved is relevant and whether there is any legal objection to its admissibility. There are certain classes of documents, which are wholly in-admissible in evidence for certain purposes, owing to defects such as want of registration etc., (see e.g., section 49 of the Indian Registration Act.) There are others in which the defect can be cured, e.g., by payment of penalty in the case of certain unstamped or insufficiently stamped documents.

 

60. Mode of proof of documents. As regards mode of proof, the provisions of the Indian Evidence Act should be carefully borne in mind. The general rule is that documents should be proved by primary evidence, i.e., the document itself should be produced in original and proved. If secondary evidence is permitted, the Court should see that the conditions under which such evidence can be let in, exist. If an old document is sought to be proved under section 90, the Court should satisfy itself by every reasonable means that it comes from proper custody. Under the Bankers` Books Evidence Act, 1891, certified copies can be produced, instead of the original entries in the Books of Banks, in certain circumstances, and a similar privilege is extended under Rule 78 of the Punjab Co-operative societies Rule, 1963, to entries in books of societies registered under the Punjab Co-operative Societies Act, 1961.

 

61. Examination of witnesses identifying documents. There are certain points which the Courts should bear in mind, when the signature or attestation of document is sought to be proved.

Before a witness is allowed to identify a document he should ordinarily be made, by proper questioning, to state the grounds of his knowledge with regard to it. For instance, if he is about to speak to the act of signature, he should first be made to explain concisely the occurrences which led to his being present when the document was signed; and if he is about to recognise a signature on the strength of his knowledge of the supposed signer’s handwriting, he should first be made to state the mode in which this knowledge was acquired. This should be done by the party who seeks to prove the document. It is the duty of the Court, in the event of the witness professing ability to recognize or identify handwriting, always to take care that his capacity to do so is thus tested, unless the opposite party admits it.

 

62. Signature by the pen of another. The signature of one person which purports, or which appears by the evidence, to have been written by the pen of another is not proved until both the fact of the writing and the authority of the writer to write the same on the document is proved.

In the case if an illiterate person it should be proved that he understood the contents of the document.

As regards proof of thumb-marks, see Chapter 9, ‘Finger Impressions’ of Volume IV, High Court Rules and Orders, 1966.

 

63. Proof of registered documents. Attention is invited to the proviso added to section 68 of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872, by Act XXXI of 1926, which lays down that it shall not be necessary to call an attesting witness in proof of the execution of any document, not being a will, which has been registered in accordance with the provisions of the Indian Registration Act, 1908, unless its execution by the person by whom it purports to have been executed is specifically denied.

 

64. Certified extracts from Settlement records bearing on the case should be placed on the records. It frequently happens that, although the Wajib-ul-Arz or Riwaj-i-Am or other Revenue record is referred to by the parties and by the Court itself, as affording most important evidence, there is no certified extract or copy with the record of the entries relied on. Not only has there been no formal proof of such copy, but often, when there is any copy at all, it is incomplete, or so carelessly written as to be unintelligible.  It becomes necessary to call for originals, thus causing damage to the records themselves, and delay and inconvenience to the parties to the suit. It is the duty of Appellate Courts to see that the Courts subordinate to them have proper extracts or copies of relevant entries in Settlement records made, verified and placed in the record.

 

65. Revision of record before judgment. (i) It is the duty of the Court before proceeding to judgment under Order XX, Rule 1 of the Code of Civil procedure, finally to revise the record which is to form the basis of its judgment and to see that is contains all that has been formally admitted in evidence, should be returned to the parties.

(ii) Duties of Appellate Courts in such matters. Appellate Courts should examine the records of cases coming before them on appeal with a view to satisfying themselves that subordinate Courts have complied with the provisions of the law on the subject; and should take serious notice of the matter when it appears that any Court has failed to do so.

 

66. Return of documents. Documents admitted in evidence can be returned to the persons producing them, subject to the provisions of Order XIII, Rule 9(as amended by the High Court by notification No. 563-G, dated the 24th November, 1929). If an application is made for return of a document produced in evidence before the expiry of the period for filing an appeal or before the disposal of the appeal (if one is filed) care should be taken to require a certified copy to be placed on the record, and to take an undertaking for production of the original, if required.

 

Section H ---- Production of Revenue Records

 

67. Requisitions of Appellate Courts to be sent to Deputy Commissioner. Requisitions by Commissioners for original revenue records will be addressed to the Deputy Commissioner, who will take measures to transmit such records to the Court calling for them. Such Court will be responsible for the safe custody of the records, and if in any case a record is found to have been damaged in the Court of the Commissioner or Financial Commissioner, the Deputy Commissioner will report the fact to the Court concerned and to the Financial Commissioner within twenty-four hours of its being returned.

 

68. Production by Special Kanungo, or Patwari. Original Revenue records will be produced in Courts of first instance by the Special Kanungo, or Patwari deputed for the purpose in accordance with the instructions contained in Chapter 9, Volume 1, of the High Court Rules and Orders as amended from time to time.

 

Briefly, the procedure to be followed in such cases is as under: -

                                 I.      The Court in which the suit is pending issues a summons to the Special Kanungo, or Patwari deputed for the purpose who, after preparing his excerpt, goes to the Court on the date fixed, taking with him the revenue records from which the excerpt has been complied. He is then placed in the witness box. Counsel thus has the opportunity of comparing the excerpt with the original, and of examining him on any points he chooses.

                              II.      Parties who desire to summon the Special Kanungo or Patwari concerned as a witness with his records must be required to state succinctly and in writing the point on which information is required, and the application must be sent along with the summons to the Special Kanungo or Patwari concerned. The Court must see that the application is in a readily intelligible form before they issue it, and the practice, where it occurs, of sending for the Special Kanungo or Patwari concerned to tell what is required must be discontinued though Courts may also issue written instructions, or supplement or correct the application.

                            III.      Courts must be on their guard against using the Special Kanungo or Patwari concerned for purposes for which he is not intended. e.g., he is not to be required to give opinion, he is not to be used as a local Commissioner, or to be asked to provide instances in support of or to refute an alleged custom. Courts must also see that, if Special Kanungo or Patwari  is required, he is summoned for the first hearing after issues are framed and not, as sometimes happens at present, at the end of the case. They must also never fail to ask him on oath whether the excerpt is in accordance with the revenue records.

                           IV.      The excerpt prepared by the Special Kanungo is not evidence unless proved and cannot be used as such. His cannot be allowed to go to outlying Courts because he cannot take the revenue records with him, and without that there would be no check over his excerpt. It is, however, very desirable that outlying Courts should be able to utilize the Special Kanungo, and as the best practicable methods of securing that object, Presiding Officers of outlying Courts may issue either interrogatories for the Special Kanungo or an open Commission to a senior official at headquarters ordinarily and, unless there is some special reason to the contrary, District Revenue Officer or an officer not below the rank of an Extra Assistant Commissioner. This official, who will have other duties and is described in the instructions as the officer-in-charge, will then comply with the directions given, summon the Special Kanungo, record his statement on oath and make the return to the Court. In this connection attention is drawn to Order XXVI, Rule 18 (1), of the Code of Civil Procedure. The issue of a Commission should not become a source of unnecessary delay, and the officer-in-charge should in the absence of very strong reasons proceed in the absence of parties if they do not appear. Parties should be informed that their appearance at headquarters is optional if interrogatories are issued.

 

69. Duty of Courts in such matters. In every case it is the duty of the Court to insist: -

(a)                 on the plaintiff filing with the plaint the statement referred to in paragraph 13 supra;

(b)                on each party filing certified copies or extracts of all relevant entries on which it relies.

 

 

70. Duties of Appellate Courts in calling for revenue records. Appellate Courts should refrain from calling for original records unless it is absolutely necessary for a determination of the case and if the necessity arises from the neglect of the Court of first instance to comply with the instructions here issued, such Court should be severely dealt with by the Appellate Court in the exercise of the functions of administrative control vested in it.

 

71. Inconvenience resulting from a neglect of the orders pointed out. Where Revenue Courts neglect to make the parties supply proper copies or extracts of relevant entries, inconvenience is caused (1) to the Revenue authorities in being required to produce original records unnecessarily; and (2) to Appellate Courts from the fact that all evidence necessary for a proper decision of the case is not actually on the records, and that references are made to revenue records which must be called for before the appeal can be decided. The revenue records themselves moreover often sustain injury in being sent from Court to Court, while the work of the Revenue Department may be delayed by their records being retained for long periods by Revenue Courts. At the same time, the Revenue authorities of districts should clearly understand that one of the chief objects of the more important standing records-of-rights is to supply reliable evidence for the decision of land suits by Revenue Courts; that the requirements of such Courts must be complied with; and that such records must be freely available to Courts engaged in investigating and deciding questions affecting land or interests in land.

 

72. Deputy Commissioners to bring to the notice of the Financial Commissioner the case of any officer who systematically fails to comply with the orders on the subject. The Financial Commissioner will be prepared to take proper notice of the action of any Revenue Court which disregards the directions as to the manner in which original revenue records are to be referred to, and Deputy Commissioners as Collectors, should bring to the notice of the Financial Commissioner through the usual channel, the case of any officer who systematically fails to comply with the orders on the subject.

 

Section J. ---- Attendance of Patwaris in Revenue Courts

 

73. Patwaris not to be unnecessarily summoned. Officers presiding over Revenue Courts should be careful to see that Patwaris are not summoned unnecessarily to give merely formal evidence regarding entries in the village records and annul papers, information as to which could be as well obtained from an inspection of the records in the District Office. It should be remembered that Patwaris have very important duties to perform, and that the discharge of these duties should not be hindered by making them attend Court except when examination as witnesses is really necessary. It is of great importance that they should not be called away at times appointed for harvest inspections. In view of these considerations the instructions are given, in the succeeding paragraphs.

 

74. Patwaris not to be summoned during Girdawari time. Officers presiding over Revenue Courts should not summon Patwaris (except in cases of great urgency) during the times when the principal crop girdawaris are going on, viz., 22nd September to 7th November and 22nd February to 7th April.

Patwaris should be summoned only when their presence is absolutely necessary in the opinion of the Courts and the evidence of the Kanungo is insufficient. The question whether urgency exists will be decided by the Revenue Court.

 

75. Patwaris to be summoned through the Tehsildars. Courts to furnish Patwaris with certificates showing attendance. When Revenue Court requires the attendance of a Patwari at a time other than that above referred to, such Court should forward the summons to the Tehsildar as principal revenue authority of the Tehsil to which the Patwari belongs. The Tehsildar should serve the summons with as little delay as possible. A Certificate should be furnished by the Court to every Patwari who attends, in obedience to summons, showing the date of his appearance before the Court and date on which he was dismissed.

 

76. During Settlement, Patwaris to be examined by Commission. When a settlement is in progress it is especially undesirable that Patwaris should be summoned to attend in the Revenue Courts; and when they are required to give evidence which cannot be obtained in the manner indicated in the preceding paragraph, this should usually be obtained by the issue of a commission under Order XXVI, Rule 4(1) (c) of the Code of Civil Procedure. Such commissions should ordinarily be addressed to the Settlement Tehsildar of the Tehsil, but any wish expressed on this point by the Settlement Officer should be responded to, and the period to be ordinarily allowed for the execution of commission should be arranged in consultation with him.

The Revenue Court issuing the commission should always not thereon the date to which the case has been adjourned, the officer to whom the commission is sent should then be careful either to return the commission by that date, or to inform the Court, before such date, of the circumstances which will prevent the return of the commission within the time fixed and what further time will be required.

 

Section K. ---- Commissions and Letters of Request

 

77. General. The general law as to Commissions and Letters of Request is contained in Sections 75 to 78 and Order XXVI of the Code of Civil Procedure, and the forms to be used are Nos. 7 to 8 of Appendix H of Schedule 1 of the said Code.

 

78. Expenses of Commission. Applications for the issue of commissions should be made as early as possible. Notice of any such application should be given to the other side. If, the application is granted, the Court should fix a sum for the expenses of the Commission, which should ordinarily, provide a reasonable fee to the Commissioner. If, at any time the sum so fixed is found to be insufficient, it may, for special reason, be increased by the Court. When the Commission is executed to the satisfaction of the Court, the full sum fixed should be paid to the Commissioner; but where the Commission is not executed at all or not fully or satisfactorily executed or the work done turns out to be less than was expected, it will be in the discretion of the Court to direct a less amount to be paid, or to make any other order in the matter which it thinks just and proper in the circumstances.

 

79. Issue of Commission to Revenue officials. The following directions relate to the issue of commissions to Revenue officials: -

                                 I.      No Revenue Court, of grade lower than the Court of the Collector, shall issue a commission to a Revenue Official to make a local investigation or to examine accounts or to make a partition of immovable property, not paying revenue to Government, except with the previously obtained sanction of the Deputy Commissioner.

                              II.      When a commission is issued under the preceding rule to any Revenue official below the rank of Tehsildar, moderate fees, may be allowed by the Court issuing the commission, if such Court is satisfied with the manner which the commission has been executed, and considers the services rendered sufficiently onerous to deserve remuneration;

Provided that in the case of commission issued by a Court subordinate to that of the Collector, no fees shall be allowed except with the approval of the Deputy Commissioner, and of such amount as he considers appropriate.

 

80. Issue of Commissions for local investigation, etc. Whenever it becomes necessary in the course of a suit to appoint a Commissioner to make a local enquiry or to examine accounts (see Order XXVI), the Revenue Officer who makes the order for such appointment should write the order with his own hand, and specify therein: -

a)      the precise matter of the enquiry;

b)      the reason why the evidence bearing on that matter could not reasonably be taken in the usual way at the trial in Court.

 

81. Duties of Commissioner so appointed. The Commissioner’s duties should be strictly limited by the order to such matters as taking accounts and depositions of witnesses, inspecting the land or other subject of dispute and reporting to the Court, either by means of a map or plan, or in writing, or both, the existing physical features of the subject inspected, its boundaries and situation, relative to other subjects, and so on, as the case may be. The functions of the Commissioner are thus limited to procuring evidence and information for the purpose of the trial; and this evidence, including the maps, reports, and record of evidence made by the Commissioner must be adduced in open Court before the parties and placed on record like all other evidence. The Court has no power to depute to the Commissioner the final determination of any issue between the parties.

 

82. Selection of Commissioners. Great care should be exercised by the Courts in selecting persons for appointment as Commissioners for the purpose of making local inquiries; and Deputy Commissioner should exercise strict supervision over the action of Subordinate Courts in this respect. The habitual employment of the same persons should not be encouraged. The issue of commissions to petition-writers and persons who hang about the Courts should not be permitted.

 

83. The same. Courts Readers or other ministerial officers should never be appointed to make local investigation, such as finding out the market value of the property, etc. Such Commissions should be issued wherever possible to retired Revenue Officers or professional men, such as engineers, contractors, auctioneers and accountants.

Commissioners to examine accounts should be selected from men competent in the particular form of accounts. It is absolutely futile to issue commissions in a particular form of account to a person who is unable even to read the script in which those accounts are written.

 

84. Deleted.

 

85. Letters of Requests to a foreign country. Letters of Request for execution in a foreign country should invariably be sent through the State Government. They should be accompanied by a complete list of questions to be put to the witness. Translations of the Letter of Request and of the interrogatories and cross-interrogatories and of any other document about which the witness is to be examined, should in all cases be furnished by the party at whose instance the letter of Request is issued in the language of the country in which the commission is to be executed and shall be transmitted with the Letter of Request. In cases where both parties are to be represented at the examination, the letter of Request might further ask that the agents of the parties be permitted to ask such further questions in examination and cross-examination as they may be advised.

 

86. The same. As the foreign authorities responsible for executing Letters of Request, etc., are entitled to the payment of any out-pocket expenses actually incurred in obtaining the evidence for Indian Courts, the Courts should therefore satisfy themselves before sending any document for execution that in case of such a demand being made the money will be forthcoming.

 

Section L. ---- Hearing of Suits, Adjournments, Examination of witnesses, etc.

 

87. Notice of day of trial and adjournment. Notice of day of trial, reasonably sufficient to enable the parties to attend with their witnesses, should be given beforehand. It is the business of the parties respectively to take all the reasonable steps to have all their witnesses present in Court on the day fixed. The Court should, on application and deposit of process-fees within proper time, issue the requisite summons as soon as possible so as to secure their attendance on the day fixed for hearing. The day fixed for the trial should not be changed except for sufficient cause, and in dealing with applications for adjournment the interests of both parties ought to be considered when the day of trial is changed otherwise than with the consent of all parties, reasonable notice of the change should be given as in the first instance. The Court should in every instance, at the time of granting adjournment, record its reasons for so doing, and make an order as to the cost thereof.

Revenue judicial cases especially in which parties have engaged counsel should not, as far as possible, be taken up on tour without giving notice sufficiently in advance to the parties of the place of hearing. The record should show that due notice of date and place has been given and served upon the parties.

 

88. Adjournments on payments of costs. It has been observed that a number of Courts grant an adjournment merely because the party at fault is prepared to pay the cost of adjournment. Subordinate Court should bear in mind that the offer of payment of the costs of adjournment is not in itself a sufficient ground for adjournment. The provision of Order XVII, Rule 3, also deserves notice in this connection. If a party to suit to whom time has been granted for a specific purpose as contemplated by Order XVII, Rule 3, Civil Procedure Code, fails to perform the act or acts for which time was granted without any good cause the rule gives the Court discretion to proceed to decide the suit ‘forthwith’ i.e., without granting any adjournment. In such cases a further adjournment should not ordinarily be granted, merely because offer is made for payment of costs. In some Courts, it is apparently assumed that if such an adjournment is not granted the case will be remanded by an Appellate Court. There are, however, no valid grounds for this assumption. If the record makes it clear that a further adjournment has been refused because of the negligence of the party concerned, such refusal would not in itself justify an Appellate Court in remanding the case. An adjournment granted otherwise than on full and sufficient grounds is favour and in suit favour can be shown to one party only at the expenses of the other.

No hard and fast rule can, however, be laid down. Each case must be judged on its own merits.

 

89. Witnesses should be examined on the day on which they attend. Revenue Courts should endeavour to hear the evidence on the date fixed; much expense and inconvenience being caused by postponements ordered on insufficient grounds, before the witnesses in attendance have been heard. Under Order XVII, Rule 1, of the Code, when the hearing of the evidence has once begun the hearing of the suit should be continued from day to day until all the witnesses in attendance have been examined, unless the Court finds the adjournment of the hearing to be necessary to be recorded by the Judge with his own hand.

 

90. Court to note when each party has used his case. It is frequently urged in appeals that a party has had a witness in attendance whom the lower Court has omitted to examine. It is often impossible to ascertain from the record whether this is the case, and it would be equally impossible to ascertain it by a remand. It is, therefore, directed that, as regards both plaintiff and defendant, when the examination of the last witness produced in Court by either party is closed, such party shall be distinctly asked if he has any more witnesses to produce; that the question, and reply shall be noted on the record, and that if more witnesses are named, the Court shall either examine them or record its reasons for not doing so. If either party states that he desires additional witnesses to be summoned, the Court should record the fact of the application and pass an order thereupon.

 

91. Examination of witnesses how to be conducted. In the examination of witnesses, question ought not to be put in a leading form, nor in such a form as to induce a witness, other than an expert, to state a conclusion of his reasoning, an impression of fact, or a matter of belief, in the place of describing what he actually observed. The questions should be simple, should be put one by one, and should be framed so as to elicit from the witness, as nearly as may be in chronological order, all the material facts to which he can speak of his own personal knowledge. A general request to a witness to tell what he knows or to state the facts of the case should as a rule not be allowed because it gives an opening for a prepared story. Where the party calling witnesses is not aided by a counsel, and is unable himself to examine properly his witnesses he may be asked to suggest questions and examination may be conducted by the Court.

 

92. Cross-examination. When the examination-in-chief is concluded, the opposite side should be allowed to cross-examine the witness, or, if unable to do so, to suggest questions to be put by the Court. In cross-examination leading questions are permissible.

 

93. Re-examination. -Then should follow, if necessary, re-examination for the purpose of enabling the witness to explain answers which he may have imperfectly given on cross-examination and to add such further facts as may be admissible for the purpose.

 

94. Questions by the Court. When the examination, cross-examination and re-examination are conducted by the parties or by their pleaders, the presiding officer ought not, as a general rule, to interfere except when necessary, e.g., for the purpose of causing questions to be put in a clear and proper shape, of checking improper questions, and of making a witness give precise answers. At the end, however, if these have been reasonably well conducted, he ought to know fairly well the exact position of the witness with regard to the material facts of the case, and he should then put any questions to the witness that he thinks necessary. The examination, cross-examination, re-examination and examination by Court (if any) should be indicated by marginal notes on the record.

 

 

Section M. --- Judgments and Decrees

 

95. General instructions as to the judgment. When the trial in Court is over the Revenue officer should proceed at once, or as soon as possible, to the consideration of his judgment. It is essentially necessary that he should do so while the demeanour of the witnesses and their individual characteristics are fresh in his memory. He should bear in mind that his first duty is to arrive at a conscientious conclusion as to the true state of those facts of the case about which the parties are not agreed. The oral and documentary evidence adduced upon each issue should be carefully reviewed and considered in the judgment. The judgment should contain a concise statement of the pleadings, the points for determination, the decision thereon, and the reasons for such decision. The judgment should be dated and signed in open Court at the time of pronouncing it, and should be pronounced in open Court at a time fixed for the purpose. When a judgment is not written by the presiding officer with his hand, every page of such judgment should be signed by him. It should contain the direction of the Courts as to costs.

 

96. Evidence and final order to be recorded legibly. Judgments (when not typewritten) should always be written in clear and legible manner. If they are not so written, such a copy should be made and placed with the record.

When a revenue officer has occasion to decide any case in accordance with any rules or orders of Government or of the Financial Commissioners, or under any section of an Act of the Legislature, he should make a reference in his order to such rules, orders or Acts and in recording his order he should as far as possible use the actual wording of such rules, orders of Acts.

 

97. Judgments must be written and announced within 14 dates from the date on which arguments and heard. Instances have occurred of Judgments not being written until a considerable time after final arguments in case have been heard. The practice is open to grave objection, and in any case in which judgment is not written and pronounced within 14 days from the date on which arguments were heard, a written explanation of the delay must be furnished by the Subordinate Court concerned to the Deputy Commissioner. This is not meant to encourage a practice of reserving judgments; on the contrary, judgments should ordinarily be written as soon as arguments have been heard. It is only in the exceptional case where the Court has to consider many rulings and cannot conveniently give judgment at once, that there is any justification for judgment being reserved.

 

98. Decree. The decree should be framed by the Revenue Officer with the most careful attention to its object. It must agree with the judgment and be not only complete in itself but also precise and definite in its terms. It should specify clearly and distinctly the nature and extent of the relief granted, and what each party affected by it, is ordered to do or to forebear from doing. Every declaration of right made by it must be concise, yet accurate every injunction, simple and plain.

 

99. Standard forms of decree prescribed in certain cases. Standard forms of decree for use in the following classes of Revenue Court cases have been prescribed by the Financial Commissioner: -

                                 I.      --Claims for right of occupancy.

                              II.      --Claims to contest notice of ejectment.

                            III.      – Claims for enhancement of rent.

                           IV.      -Claims to declare void transfer of right of occupancy.

 

100. Powers of the Court to be disclosed. Every judicial officer hearing or deciding a suit, proceeding or appeal, shall ensure that the record and the final orders of judgment and the decree, shall disclose the powers which such officer exercised in hearing or deciding such suit, proceeding or appeal.

 

101. Preparation of decrees. The following directions relate to the preparation of decrees: -

           (i) In decrees for possession of agricultural land it should be stated whether possession is to be given at once, or after the removal of any crop that may be standing on the land at the time when the decree is executed, or on or after any specified date;

          (ii) in Appellate Courts the language used in filling in the decretal order, shall conform the action recognized by law, and shall direct that the decree of the lower Court be either ‘affirmed’, ‘varied’, ‘set aside’, or ‘reserved’. In each case in which a decree is affirmed the terms thereof shall be recited, so as to make the Appellate decretal order complete in itself. In varying a decree the relief granted in lieu of that originally granted shall be fully and accurately set out. Where a decree is reversed on appeal, the consequential relief granted to the successful party shall similarly be stated. Every decretal order shall be so worded as to be capable of execution without reference to any other document, and so as to obviate misunderstanding on the part of the persons concerned.

          (iii) When any parties added or substituted in the course of the suit, care should be taken to see that their names are properly shown in the decree sheet.

 

102. Decrees based on compromise. When a decree is to be passed on the basis of a compromise, the Court should order the terms of the compromise to be recorded in accordance with the provisions of Order XXIII, Rule 3, Civil Procedure Code, and then pass a decree in accordance with the terms. When, however, the compromise goes beyond the subject-matter of the suit, a decree can be passed only in so far it relates to the suit. As regards the proper form of decree in the latter class of cases, the directions of their Lordships of the privy Council in ‘Hemant Kumari Debi versus Midnapur Zamindari Company’ (46 I.A. 240 and 244, and I.L.R.18 Cal. 485) should be followed. When any of the parties to the case are minors, care should be taken to see whether the compromise is to their benefit and record a finding to that effect if the compromise is sanctioned and made the basis of a decree.

 

Section N. ---- Appeals

 

103. General. The instructions contained in Chapters 14-B, and 14-D of Volume 1 of High Court Rules and Orders should be observed mutates mutandis by all Revenue Appellate Court.

The provisions of Order XLI, Rule 11, of the Code of Civil Procedure, which enables the Appellate Court to dispose of the registered appeal by confirming the decision of the lower Court on a fixed date in the presence of the Appellate, without sending for the records and without summoning the respondents, is very important one, and Appellate Courts should be careful to see that its object is not defeated and respondents put to all cases. It should be observed, that when a decision is confirmed under Order XLI, Rule 11, of the Code, the confirmation must be notified to the lower Court. Such confirmation falling without the definition of ‘decree’ in section 2 of the Code, and being as such, appealable, a formal decree should be framed in every case disposed of under the provisions of Order XLI, Rule 11.

 

104. Copy of decree to be filed. Appellants should always file, with the petition of appeal and the copy of the judgment appealed against, a copy of the decree appealed against.

 

105. Vernacular copies of English orders not required. It is not necessary to file copies of orders in vernacular as well as in English. Where the English order is the original, it will suffice to file a copy of the order in English, on duly stamped paper without its counterpart in vernacular.

 

106. Terms ‘Appellant and ‘Respondent’ not be used. As confusion frequently arises from the use of words ‘Appellant’ and ‘Respondent’ in two successive Appellate Courts, especially when the parties appealing belong to different sides, Appellate Courts should not use these terms, but always ‘plaintiff’ and ‘Defendant’ throughout their proceedings. If the later terms are used, no mistake can possibly arise.

 

107. Appellate files transmitted in vernacular. In cases of appeal to the Financial Commissioner files should not be transmitted under English Docket or covering letter; nor will they be so returned except in cases of importance or general interest.

 

108. The following rules are made by the Financial Commissioner in regard to the transmission of Appellate Court’s orders to lower Courts: -

                                  i.      The Commissioner will send copies of all his judgments on appeal to the Collector, who will transmit the copies to the original Court for information and return direct to the Record-keeper, to whom the original records will be sent at once.

                                ii.      The collector will similarly send copies of all his judgments on appeal to the original Court for information and return direct to the Record-keeper, to whom the original records will be sent at once.

                               iii.      Translations of judgments will be sent if any non-English knowing officers ask for them. If they are sent, they will be attached to the English copies, and the same procedure will be followed.

 

Section O --- Abatement of Proceedings

 

109. Death, Marriage or Insolvency of parties. (a) In Revenue Officers, cases the death of one of one of the parties to a revenue proceeding, or, in a proceeding to which a female is a party, her marriage does not cause the proceedings to abate. And the Revenue Officer before whom the proceeding is held shall have power to make the successor-in-interest of the deceased person or of the married female a party thereto.

         (b) In Revenue Court cases, procedure to be followed in the event of death, marriage, or insolvency of parties is laid down in Order XXII, Civil Procedure Code. Proper steps must be taken to bring the legal representatives of the persons concerned (the Receiver in the case of a person who is declared an insolvent) on the record within the period on limitation. Otherwise, the suit is liable to abate wholly or partly in certain cases. The abatement takes place automatically and a formal order of abatement, though not essential, should be usually recorded. The abatement can be set aside on an application by the aggrieved party, if sufficient cause is shown (Order XXII, Rule 9).

            There is not abatement if a party dies after the conclusion of the case but before judgment. In such cases judgment may be pronounced and will take effect as thought had been pronounced while the party was alive. 

In certain cases, the abatement of a suit as against one defendant results in the dismissal of the whole suit. Reference may be made in this connection to I.L.R. 10 Lahore 7 (F.B.).

 

Section P. --- Miscellaneous

 

110. Rent Suits. Paragraph 804 of Land Administration Manual and Section 70(1) of the Punjab Tenancy Act, should be strictly observed; and in case no application for grant of compensation is put in, a note should be made by the Court that the tenant was so directed.

In suits for enhancement of rent the Revenue Court should invariably state in tabular form in its judgment the area involved and the present land revenue and cesses, together with the rent or malikana as the case may be. If there has been a recent re-assessment of land revenue, the previous land revenue, cesses and malikana (if any) should be stated also.

 

111. Notice of sale of right of occupancy. In connection with the sale of a right of occupancy in execution of a decree or order of Court under Section 55(2) of the Punjab Tenancy Act, 1887, the following form of notice for issue to the landlord concerned is prescribed: -

_______________________District.

NOTICE OF SALE OF RIGHT OF OCCUPANCY in execution of a decree or order of Court issued to the landlord pursuant to the provisions of sub-section (2) of section 55 of the Punjab Tenancy Act, 1887, by the Court of ___________________held at __________________in the district aforesaid.

Landlord on whom this notice is to be served.

 

Tenant whose right of occupancy is to be sold.

 

Tenancy to which this notice relates.

(Give for each field included in the tenancy, its number and its area; also the total area of the tenancy and the estate and Tehsil in which situate).

A.B. (with father’s name, caste and residence)

 

C.D. (with father’s name, caste and residence).

 

Notice is hereby given to A.B., the landlord of the tenancy above described, that the right of occupancy of C.D., the tenant, will be sold by this Court at ________ o’clock of the ___________ day of ____________19______________in execution of the decree described below, and the landlord is hereby informed that if at any time before the close of the day on which the sale takes place he pays to the Court or to the Officer conducting the sale sum equal to one-fourth of the highest bid made at the sale he shall be declared to be the purchaser of the tenant’s right of occupancy at the amount of that bid.

 

Dated at the Court of          (Seal and signature of the Court)

This day of _____ 19

(Particular of decree in execution of which this sale is ordered)

 

 

112. Tenures to be accurately described. The attention of Revenue Officers is invited to the necessity of describing accurately the tenures dealt with in their administrative and judicial proceedings. It is very common for an undivided share in a holding to be described as if it were a stated area of a land held separately. Care should be taken to eliminate misdescriptions of this nature from revenue proceedings. If a person holds an undivided share in land, his interest should always be so described; and the use of the words which imply that he holds separately a definite area should be carefully avoided. Plaints, applications and reports which contain errors of this nature should be returned for correction.

 

113. Surveys and boundaries. When time has been granted by the Civil Court to a party in suit for the purpose of making an application under section 101 of the Land Revenue Act, 1887, and such application is made, the Revenue Officer should endeavour to dispose of the application as promptly as the circumstances of the case will allow.

 

114. References to the High Court under Section 100. Direct references to the High Court of the kind provided for in Section 100 of the Punjab Tenancy Act, 1887, may be made by Commissioners and Collectors, and the rules published in chapter 15 of the Rules and Orders of the High Court, Volume 1, should, so far as they are applicable, be observed by Commissioners and Collectors in making these references and all Revenue Courts should similarly observe these rules in making these references under Section 99 ibid.

 

115. Court hours, holidays and cause lists. The attention of Revenue Officers is invited to the instructions laid down in Chapter 1-A of the High Court Rules and Orders, Volume I, in regard to the means to be adopted of informing litigants of the hours of business of Court holidays and cause lists, with the object of reducing the number of dismissals of cases in default of appearance of plaintiffs or appellants. Revenue Courts and Officers should conform to the practice thus laid down for Civil Courts.

 

116. Petition Paper. With regard to the paper employed in formal petitions to Revenue Courts and Offices the practice of Civil Courts should be followed. The paper required should be obtained by Collectors from the Controller of Printing and Stationery, Punjab, quarterly on regular indents. The paper is to be sold to the public at ten Paise per sheet, and the rules for the supply, custody and sale of non-postal stamps given in the Punjab Stamp Manual, apply mutatis mutandis to the water-marked plain paper.

 

117. Preparation of Records, size and quality of paper. Instructions for the preparation of Revenue Judicial Records, and the size and quality of paper to be used in all Revenue Courts and Offices are reproduced below: -

(1)                           Petition paper to be used for all copies, petitions and applications. The instructions conveyed in Chapter 16, Part A, Rule 1 of the Rules and Orders of the High Court, Volume IV, regarding the use of the standard pattern water-marked plain paper supplied by the Controller of Printing and Stationery, Punjab, should be strictly followed in Revenue Court and Offices. All copies of Revenue documents and all applications and petitions should be written on this paper, and copyists and petition-writers should be required to comply with this direction. The paper is to be used and kept flat at its full size (131/2”x81/2).

(2)                           Official foolscap paper. The official foolscap half sheet, which is very nearly the same size as the petition paper alluded to in the last paragraph should be used for all English portions of the record, and should also be kept flat.

(3)                            Unbleached double foolscap paper of 24 1bs. should be used for the autograph records of officers who do not write their records in English. For ordinary purposes paper of 20 1bs. should be used. The varieties of paper are obtainable from the Controller of Printing and Stationery, Punjab, along with other articles of Stationery. Blank books can also be obtained form that office and should always be used for registers.

(4)                           ‘B’ quality paper to be used for vernacular portion of the record. The remainder of the vernacular portion of the record should be written on ‘B’ quality paper as supplied by the Jail Department folded to quarter sheet.

(5)                           Instructions to prevent waste. In order to prevent waste and injury and improve the vernacular records, attention should be paid to the following matters: -

a)      In all cases, depositions of witnesses should be written continuously instead of on separate sheets, a clear space of 3 or 4 inches being left between the end of one and the beginning of the next deposition (if on the same sheet).

b)      The practice of writing orders and other matters across the top and along the sides of a page should be avoided.

c)      In all vernacular proceedings an eighth margin should be left on each side of the paper so that writing should not be obliterated by fraying at the edges.

d)      Files in use of Revenue Offices should be placed between stiff wooden or cardboard protectors, of the size of the standard file, when tied together, so that the strain of the cloth or other covering or of the string of tape does not fall on the papers within. It is not intended that the file of each case should be placed between stiff covers, all that is necessary is to tie each file with broad tape or nawar instead of string, but each bundle of files should, until packed away in the Record Room, be kept between stiff covers to prevent fraying, folding, etc.

e)      The record and papers should be placed at their full size in envelopes of the size of the file.

f)        Exhibits should be folded to as nearly as possible the same size and placed in envelopes of the size of the file.

 

 

118. Chronological abstract of order to be attached to certain files. All revenue Courts are required to enter on a separate sheet or sheets in the annexed form, a short abstract of every order passed in the course of the proceedings in a case. The entries are to be made consecutively according to the dates of the orders, and the sheet is to be the first paper entered in the index of papers. The entries so made are to be in addition to the usual record of the orders in their proper places in the file, and are intended to facilitate the tracing by Appellate Courts of the course of procedure in a case.

 

Form of Chronological Abstract of Orders

In the Court of …………………….. at ………………………

      Case No.                     of

Date of order

                      Abstract of Order

 

 

      Generally, this abstract is not necessary in Revenue Officers’ and miscellaneous cases, but partition, boundary and muafi cases are exceptions to this general rule.

======================================================

STANDING   ORDER   No. 28

(Land Acquisition No. 28)

 

LAND ACQUISITION

 

1.        Original issue, dated  the 26th June, 1909

2.        First reprint, dated the 27th January, 1911

3.        Second reprint, dated the 5th May, 1920

4.        Third reprint, dated the 22nd January, 1926

5.        Fourth reprint, dated the 18th August, 1934

6.        Fifth reprint, dated the 22nd January 1952

7.        Sixth reprint, dated the 3rd June, 1963

8.        Revised on 9th March, 1985

9.        Amended on 13th March, 2000

10.      Amended on 18th April, 2008

 

            In connection with this standing order Chapter XIV of the Land Administration Manual should be consulted.

 

            This standing order deals with the acquisition of land for public purposes, whether the land be taken up by private negotiation or in accordance with the provisions of Act I of 1894 and Amendment Act, 1984 of the Act ibid.

 

CONTENTS

 

Section

Para

Subject

 

 

Letter dated 13/3/2000 in regard to amendment

A

 

Cases of Acquisition to which the provisions of Act I

 of 1894  are not applicable

 

1

Proceedings under Land Acquisition Act – Inappropriate

 

2

Transfer of State Lands and Buildings between Central and State Governments.

 

3

Acquisition of Land owned by Municipal Corporation/ Councils

 

3A

Transfer of Nazul land other than land owned or occupied by the Municipal Committee/Municipal Corporation

 

3-B

Transfer of Inferior evacuee land

 

3-C

Transfer of surplus Evacuee land

 

3-D

Land in possession of Military Department

 

4

Procedure when land required by the Irrigation Department in possession of the Forest Department

 

5

Procedure when land required by Irrigation Department is un-classed forest

 

6

Transfer of land already in possession of one department to another department of the State Governments

 

6A-1

6A-2

6A-3

Rules regarding Credits and Debits Punjab Government Finance Department No.1246-SB, dated 17th June, 1926

 

6-B

Award in case of Government land included in a notification under the Land Acquisition Act

 

6-C

Transfer of land from a commercial department – valuation to be accepted by the department to which the land is transferred

 

6-D

Heads to which sale proceeds of land should be credited

 

6-E

Loaning of land to Government Department

B         

 

PROCEDURE  FOR  ACQUISITION  OF  LAND  FOR  PUBLIC  PURPOSES

 

7

Site Selection

 

8

Two ways of acquiring land

 

9

Preparation  of  data  for  notification  u/s 4

 

10.

Preparation  of  a  notification  under  section  4

 

11

Issue  of  No  Objection  Certificate  (NOC)

 

12

Scrutiny  for  N.O.C. by DC/ SLLAB

 

13

Constitution of  District  Land  Price  Fixation  Committee (DLPFC)

 

14

Procedure  for  District  Land  Price  Fixation  Committees

 

15

Guidelines for District Land Price Fixation Committee

 

16

Valuation of fixtures/structures, trees etc.

 

17

Procedure  for  the  concerned  department – Approval of market rate

 

18

Rate to be finalized before notification under section 6

 

19

Administrative department competent to examine the record of Land Acquisition Collector

B (I)

 

PROCEDURE  OF COLLECTORS AFTER ISSUE OF NOTIFICATION UNDER SECTION 4

 

19A

Act XXXVIII of 1923- The disposal of objections

 

19-B

Special provision in case of urgency

C

 

ACQUISITION  BY  PRIVATE  NEGOTIATION

 

20

Advantages of Acquisition by private negotiation

 

21

Initial proceedings when acquisition is by private agreement

 

22

Duties of Deputy Commissioners when acquisition is by private agreement

 

23-I

Abstract of title to be obtained

 

23-II

Original documents to be examined

 

23-III

Precautions to be taken in the case of minor vendors

 

24

Procedure for concluding a bargain by private negotiation

 

25 I

Conclusion of negotiation

 

25-II.A

Signatures of Deputy Commissioner, when necessary

 

26-I

Statement required at the time of payment

 

27

Payments how made

 

27-A

Payments – when to make

D        

 

COMPULAORY  ACQUISITION  UNDER

ACT  I   OF  1984

 

28

General instructions

 

29

General Instructions

 

30-I

Notification under section 6

 

30-II

Form of Notification

 

31-I

Explanation  to  accompany  the  draft  notification

 

31-II(a)

Departments to whom  the  notifications  are  to  be  sent

 

31-II(b)

Department to whom application are to be sent – Acquisition of land for central government departments -

 

31-A I

Proceedings in the acquiring Department

 

31-B

Time limit for declaration under section 6  

 

32-I

Procedure after issue of notification under section 6

 

32-II

When a special officer or additional clerical staff should be applied for

 

32-III

Results of negotiations to be intimated to the collector

E

 

PROCEDURE OF  COLLECTORS  AFTER  ISSUE  OF  A  NOTIFICATION  UNDER  SECTION  6

 

33

Procedure of acquiring officer empowered under section 7

 

34-I

Land to be marked out

 

34-II

Treatment of discrepancies in measurement

 

35

Form of notice under section 9

 

36-I

Statement of values and owners

 

36-II

Report giving data for estimate of market value

 

36-III

Copy of field map to be filed with the proceedings  

 

37

Report when to be completed

 

38

Notice to departmental officer

 

39

Opportunity to be given to the departmental officer to make representations to acquiring officer

 

40

Deleted

APPROVAL OF AWARDS

 

41

Authorities competent to approve the award

 

42

Deleted

 

42-A

Acquiring department to decide whether to acquire the land or abandon acquisition  

 

42-B

Deleted

 

42 C

Land Acquisition Officer to report to Collector of the District

 

43

Deleted

 

43-A

Points to be examine by the authorities approving the award

 

44

Collector’s powers to require cases to be referred to him before awards

 

45

Rules for the payment of compensation

 

46

Acquiring Officer an agent of Government and not a judicial officer. – Government of India Circular No.9-292, dated the 28th June, 1906

 

47

Opportunity of withdrawal to be given to acquiring department

G

 

F- THE   AWARD

 

48

Land acquired for a local body or company

 

49-(I)

Procedure of acquiring officer on hearing claims for compensation

 

49- (II)

Matters to be considered by the acquiring officer in compensation

 

50 -I

Price – how to be fixed

 

50-II

Add

 

51

Persons who may claim compensation on the ground that his land is injuriously affected

 

52 (I)

Treatment of revenue assignments

 

52-II

Reduction in Revenue to be made from rent roll

 

52-III

Treatment when assignment is petty or where considerable

 

53

Cash Compensation how to be calculated

 

54

How the award is to be drawn up

 

55

Statement showing compensation for each holding

 

56

Announcement of the Award

 

57

Proceedings under separate notifications

 

58

Compensation in form of land in lieu of cash  

 

58-A

Treatment of such cases

 

59

Collector’s power to award land in lieu of cash

 

60

Value of such land how to be adjusted

H

 

REFERENCE  TO  THE  COURT

 

61

Reference under section 19 now made

 

62

Departmental Officer to be informed

 

63

Representation of Government in court

 

64

Deleted

K

 

TAKING POSSESSION

 

65

When possession may be taken

 

66

Liberal treatment in cases of sudden dispossession

 

67

Possession before the award when permissible

 

68

Possession prior to notification when permissible

 

69

Avoid taking possession prior to award

 

70

Collector alone may take possession

L

 

PAYMENT  OF  COMPENSATION  AFTER  AWARD  BY  THE COLLECTOR

 

71

Payment of compensation when made

 

 

(a)

PROVISION OF FUNDS

 

72 (I)

Provision of Funds when land taken up by Collector of district

 

72-II.

 Provision of funds when land is acquired by special officer for Public Works Department

(b)

PROCEDURE IN MAKING PAYMENTS

 

73(1)

Statement to be forwarded to the Accountant General

 

74

Methods of making payments

 

75 (I)

Direct payments

 

75 II

By order on treasury

 

75-III

Rules concerning payment by money orders

 

75-IV

Rules concerning payments by cheque

 

75 –V

By treasury deposit

 

76 (I)

Audit

 

76-II

Audit of Accounts

 

76-III

Procedure for the Accountant General

 

76-IV

CDA to substitute for AG for Military works

 

76-V

Accounts Officers to substitute for AG for other works

 

77

Audit, adjustment and recovery of payments on behalf of bodies financially independent of Government

M        

 

PAYMENT OF COMPENSATION AFTER AN AWARD BY A COURT

 

78-I

Payment of compensation

 

78-II

Communication of charge in appointment

 

78-III

Payments into court how made, paragraph 9, Government of India resolution No.2209-A, dated 10th May 1895

 

78-IV

Compensation in excess to be paid in the court

 

78-V

Payments when to be made by the Collector of the district

 

78-VI

Investments

N.

 

REDUCTION  OF  LAND  REVENUE

 

79

Yearly statement of reduction of revenue

 

80

Reduction how calculated

 

81 (I)

Revenue demand on acquired land when payable. 3510

 

81-(II)

Land to contribute to revenue or exempted from the revenue

 

81-III

Land revenue for lands acquired for PSUs  

 

81-IV

 Land revenue for lands acquired for a private body  

 

82

Reduction from which crop to be reckoned

O

 

TEMPORARY OCCUPATION

 

83-I

Procedure for temporary occupation

 

83-II

What land may be acquired temporarily

 

83-III

When by Private negotiations

 

83-IV

Copy of agreement to be sent to the Collector  

 

84

Now paid for

 

85-I

Titles of owners and former occupants

 

85-II.

Land revenue, how treated

 

85-III

Suspension of land revenue  

P

 

ABANDONMENT OF LAND TAKEN UP PERMANENTLY OR TEMPORARILY

 

86

Procedure to be followed when lands temporarily occupied are abandoned  

 

87

Deleted

 

87A

Utilization of acquired land when surrendered

 

88

Land owing department to comment on the rendition price

 

89

Collector to prepare a assessment

 

90

Sums realised from the sale, how dealt with

Q. 

 

DISPUTES AS TO BOUNDARIES OF LAND ACQUIRED OR OCCUPIES FOR PUBLIC PURPOSES

 

91

Boundaries of Government lands to be demarcated and checked

 

92

Disputes as to boundaries how to be settled

 

93

Who should institute suits against encroachers

R.

 

SPECIAL  RULES  RELATING  TO  THE  ACQUISITION  OF  LAND  FOR  RAILWAYS*

(a)

GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS

 

94

Temporary or permanent Acquisition

 

95

Classification of railway land

 

96

Paragraph 22 of the Indian Railway code

 

97

Cancelled

(b)

PROCEDURE FOR ACQUISITION OF LAND

 

98

Application for land

 

99

Paragraph 702 of the Indian Railways Code

 

100

Paragraph 702 of the Indian Railway Code

 

101

Paragraph 705 of the Indian Railway Code

 

102

Estimates preliminary to putting Land Acquisition Act into force

 

103

Paragraph 708 of the Indian Railway Code

 

104

Paragraph 709 of the Indian Railway Code

 

104-A

Form for preparing land estimates  

 

105

Paragraph 711 of the Indian Railway Code

 

105-A

Act XXXVIII of 1923 Notification under section 4

 

105-B

Act XXXVIII of 1923, Disposal of Objections

 

106

Procedure in cases of urgency

 

107

Where land is granted free of cost, Government undertake to secure to the railway only empty possession

(c)

PROCEDUE AFTER THE ACT IS PUT INTO FORCE

 

108

After publication of declaration

 

109

Valuation for purposes of the award

 

109-A

Taking possession

 

110

Revised estimates

 

110-A

Completion Reports 

(d)

 

MANAGEMENT OF LAND

 

111

Paragraph 810 of the Indian Railway Code

 

112

Methods of Management

 

113

Paragraph 816 of the Indian Railway Code

(e)

RELINQUISHMENT OF LAND

 

114

Paragraphs 801, 823 and 824 of the Indian Railway Code

 

115

Paragraph 825 of the Indian Railway Code

 

116

Paragraph 826 of the Indian Railway Code

 

116-A

Paragraph 827 of the Indian Railway Code

 

117

Cancelled

 

118

The terms of disposal

 

118-A

Refund of capitalized value of Land Revenue. Paragraph 831 of the Indian Railway Code

 

118-B

Paragraph 832 of the Indian Railway Code

 

119

Paragraph 833 of the Indian Railway Code

(f)

LAND PLANS AND SCHEDULE

 

120

Paragraph 640 of the Indian Railway Code

 

121

Cancelled.

 

122

Paragraph 641 of the Indian Railway Code  

 

123

Paragraphs 642-650 of the Indian Railway Code

 

124

Paragraph 651 of the Indian Railway Code

 

125

Paragraph 682 of the Indian Railway Code

 

126

Paragraph 653 of the Indian Railway Code

 

127

Cancelled

(g)

ADJUSTMENT  OF  CHARGES  ESTABLISHMENT  AND  CAPITALISED  ABATEMENT  OF  LAND  REVENUE

 

128

Incidence of cost of land taken up at the cost of a Railway

 

129

Incidence of cost of the land taken up for railways entitled to receive land free of cost

 

129-A

Cancelled

 

130

Legal procedure

S

 

REGISTERS AND  RETURNS

 

131-A

Misalband Register

 

132

Register of decided cases

 

133

Register showing land restored

 

134

Extracts to be forwarded to offices concerned

 

135

Standard English & bilingual form

 

 

Appendix   A – model form of sale deed

 

 

Appendix   B - Notes of land transfer rules

 

 

Appendix   C – Model form of transfer of land

 

 

Appendix  D – Pert Chart – Ordinary cases

 

 

Appendix –E – Pert Chart – Emergent cases

 

No. 1/55/78-LR-I/1979

GOVERNMENT OF PUNJAB

DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE

(LAND REVENUE BRANCH)

 

To

                                                                                                                       

 

All the Heads of Departments,

Commissioners of Divisions,

Deputy Commissioners and

Sub Divisional Magistrates

in the State of Punjab.

 

 Dated, Chandigarh, the 13th March 2000.

 

 

Sub:     Amendment of Financial Commissioner's Standing Order No. 28 relating to   Acquisition of Land. - An Explanatory Note.

 

Sir,

 

            The question of providing adequate compensation to the landowners for compulsory acquisition of their lands has been engaging the attention of the Government for quite some time now.  The Land Acquisition Act, 1894 provides that a landowner should be paid the market value (plus interest and solatium) for the land compulsorily acquired.  It is, however, observed that as per procedures set forth, what the landowners actually receive in the first instance is only a fraction of the market price.  This is primarily because of the out-dated and faulty procedures followed in assessing the market value of the land.  The Land Acquisition Collectors base their awards on prices of land worked out by the Deputy Commissioners, who in turn base these rates on 'Chhant' i.e. the average sale price of one year as per registration deeds. Even then the sale deeds having unusually high rates are ignored and the situation is worsened by a tendency amongst the farmers to undervalue their land to save on stamp duty, and in urban areas, by a temptation to reduce liability on account of capital gains. The aggrieved landowners have to wage a long and costly battle in different courts to get their legitimate dues. After litigation often lasting 10-15 years, what the landowners manage to get falls far short of the market value. Very often even after securing favourable verdicts from the courts, the farmers have to wait for many years to get the price.  In the meantime, land prices soar up and the farmers whose lands are acquired are altogether unable to purchase any alternative land at reasonable price.  In Punjab, particularly, farmers have a great attachment for land and it is difficult for land owners to get reconciled to its loss particularly when this is the only way of life they are familiar with.  Therefore, in the type of situation which presently prevails, acquisition brings in its wake a sense of physical loss and emotional insecurity.  The money received in instalments is invariably frittered away on unproductive expenditure.

 

2.                     Based on this experience, it was decided that the existing procedures should be streamlined to ensure that in case of compulsory acquisition the owners not only get the full market price but are also assured that this price is paid in lumpsum in the first instance itself, and there should be no need for the landowners to waste time and money in going to courts to get their dues through endless litigation.  An assurance  was also given by the Chief Minister, Punjab, on the floor of the House making a commitment that procedures would be simplified to ensure payment of correct market price to the landowners.  In the background of this commitment, the Revenue Department had presented a Memorandum to the Council of Ministers in June, 1997 making certain recommendations.  Based on the decisions taken by the Council of Ministers, two sets of instructions were issued by the Revenue Department on 14th July, 1997, one for setting up of District Land Price Fixation Committees (DLPFCs) for recommending prevailing market rates and the second for raising the powers of the Collectors to sanction the award from the existing limit of Rs. 7.00 lacs to Rs. 30.00 lacs, and for eliminating the level of the Divisional Commissioner in the sanction of the award.

 

3.                    The DLPFCs have been in existence for more than two years now. While the working of these Committees has generally been welcomed by landowners, it has met with mixed reaction in official circles. Very often the recommendations of the DLPFCs are sketchy and non-speaking giving an impression of arbitrariness in price fixation. Fears have also been expressed at times by the acquiring departments that these recommendations are too liberal and jeopardize their budgetary estimates. The non-official members of the Committee explain that although they are generally aware of the market price in their areas, it is for the official members to present data necessary for justifying -their decision in a proper manner. Whatever may be the shortcomings in the working of the District Land Price Fixation Committees, the fact remains that the official data does not give a clue to the correct land prices. The information which was collected in this connection revealed that invariably the land awards are enhanced by the courts to more than five to six times of the original price fixed by the Land Acquisition Collector after a period of litigation spreading over ten to fifteen years. Although these figures contained a substantial element of solatium and interest on the enhanced price the fact remains that they result in serious imbalances in budgetary calculations, and non- payment has sometimes invited strictures and even attachment of government property by Courts.  The artificially low prices reflected in the 'chhant' at the initial stage also result in a temptation to acquire more land than necessary, resulting in unwarranted dislocation of local population.

 

4.                    Since compensation has to be determined on the basis of market price the only  guiding  factor can  be as to what is the price  on which an owner would be willing to sell his land and what is the price a buyer would be willing to pay if acquisition proceedings were not  to take place.  Therefore some element of subjectivity based on individual perception is bound to creep in.  It is, therefore, all the more necessary that the basic guidelines for determining the land  prices should be laid down so that there are no serious imbalances in the budgetary calculations, the farmers get enough not to indulge in repeated litigation and at the same time the tendency to acquire more land  than necessary is avoided.  With this objective in view the matter has been considered by the Council of Ministers in its meeting dated 12th January, 2000 and detailed procedures have been laid down for the guidance of the DLPFCs and officers connected with land acquisition.  Part  ‘B’  of the Financial Commissioner’s Standing Order No. 28 has been recast in the  light of the decisions taken by the Council of Ministers. The intention is to make available detailed data and other information formally so that the deliberations of the DLPFCs are more meaningful, transparent and self-speaking.  Some consequential amendments flowing out of these decisions have also been incorporated.

 

 5.                   The Council of Ministers has also agreed to streamlining of procedures and elimination of unnecessary levels to cut down delays. Presently, concerned departments are issuing their own notifications under Sections 4, 6 and 17 of the Land Acquisition Act and most of them have their own Land Acquisition Collectors also.   Now that the prices are also to be guided by the DLPFCs, the repeated references to the Financial Commissioner Revenue at various stages of acquisition proceedings have been dispensed with. Henceforth, the awards to be announced under Section 11 of the Act shall also be approved by the Administrative Department concerned.  Thus the Revenue Department will only function as the Nodal Department for administration of the Act and notify Land Acquisition Collector under the Act in cases where they are not notified as such ex-officio.   It is expected that this will cut down delays to a very large extent and also make the role of the Administrative Secretary more meaningful and his supervision more effective.

 

            It may be seen that in the past the cases used to come to the Revenue Department at three stages, first at the stage of seeking No Objection Certificate (NOC) where the FCR presided over the meetings of the State Level Land Acquisition Board (SLLAB), the second at the time of approval of the Collector’s rates and the third prior to the announcement of the award.  Now, a reference will be made to the Revenue Department only at the initial stage for placing before the SLLAB and the matter will come to SLLAB again only if there is a difference of opinion between the recommendations of the DLPFC and the Administrative Department concerned.

 

 

6.                An important decision which has been taken by the Council of Ministers is that ordinarily, officers not below PCS shall be appointed as Land Acquisition Collectors and officers borne on the cadre of the Revenue Department shall be utilized to render specialized assistance with reference to revenue laws and collection and compilation of the relevant data/information.  The Council of Ministers has also decided that for purposes of Sections 11 and 15-A of the Land Acquisition Act, the word "Government" shall mean Government in the concerned    department   and    the   "authorized   officer"  shall imply   the Administrative Secretary concerned. As a corollary to this, no officer below the rank of the Administrative Secretary shall exercise the powers of the Government. This implies that the powers of Government presently delegated to the departmental heads e.g. Chief Engineers in the Irrigation and Drainage departments under sections 4, 6 and 17 of the Act shall stand withdrawn.

 

7.                      Another significant decision that has been taken is that it shall be no longer necessary to obtain an  NOC from the DC/SLLAB before the issue of notification under Section 4 of the Act.  The collection of data for acquisition and preparation of draft notification is itself a time consuming process. There is also generally a long time lag between site selection, submission of data to SLLAB, approval by SLLAB and the notification under section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act. This leads to land speculation and raises the cost of acquisition in the form of hastily raised structures, benami transactions and trading by property  dealers and middlemen.  This leaves both the landowners and the Government at a disadvantage. Therefore, it has been decided that the practice of obtaining NOC from the DC/SLLAB before the issue of notification under section 4 of the Act should be discontinued.  Instead, notification under section 4 shall be issued immediately after site selection and preparation of detailed data for such notification, and NOC would be applied for immediately after the notification.

 

8.                     As  brought out in para 4  above, the guiding  factor for determining  the   basis  of  market  price would  be what is the price at which an owner would be willing to sell his land and what is the price a buyer would be willing to pay, if acquisition proceedings were not to take place. With increase in urbanization and the land becoming a scarce commodity, locational factors like proximity to a road, a town, an urban agglomeration or even the direction in which a city is expanding have assumed far greater importance than whether a land is ‘chahi’ or 'barani' or even 'Banjar.'  Theoretically, two adjacent ‘chahi' and 'barani' 'taks’ may carry different values for compensation purposes on the basis of 'Chhant’ but there may be hardly any difference in their market price.  Moreover, with development of sophisticated means of irrigation, and advanced watershed management, in a large number of cases now whether the land is 'barani’ or 'chahi’ depends largely on the capital and financial resources at the disposal of the owner or the size of his holding.  A distinction in pricing on the basis of its quality/class may place a premium on economic affluence of the land owner and may also leave a lot of discretion in the hands of the Land Acquisition Collector.  Therefore, the distinction between various classes of land such as 'chahi’ and 'barani' etc. would no longer be considered relevant unless there are strong reasons to act otherwise. Thus a distinction would have to be made if the land is rocky or there are steep hills, 'pahar’, deep depressions and sand dunes, which in the normal course would fetch very little market price as their land use would be very much restricted and the cost of development would be high; Shares of  khewatdars in "nadis" would also fall in the same category.

 

9.           To   make the meetings of the DLPFC   more purposeful its constitution has   been made more broad based. The district level representative of the acquiring Department/Public Sector Undertakings concerned shall now be associated with every meeting of the DLPFC as also with the site visit, if conducted.  Provision has also been made to arm these Committees with detailed data for purposes of meaningful deliberations. Though the S.D.Ms shall be the conveners of these Committees, the overall guidance and coordination is required to be provided by the concerned DCs.

 

            It has come to notice in the past that in a large number of cases a lumpsum amount is recommended by these Committees for each 'quality’ or class of land.  When justification for this figure is sought the amount is merely split into price, solatium, and interest by backward calculation.  It needs to be reiterated that as per legal provisions market price is to be computed on the date of notification under section 4   and not on the date recommendations are made by DLPFC.  A lumpsum amount should only be proposed if it represents negotiated price, and even here, it should be ensured that it is  not too exorbitant as to make a deal with just cause.  It may, however, be kept in view that negotiations may turn out to be cheaper in the long run, as there would be a saving of solatium and interest (unless payment is heavily delayed after that) as also litigation. It may be noted that there is no bar for such negotiation at any stage of the proceedings in compulsory acquisition. The services of DLPFC should be utilised by the Department if there is any hesitation on its part to attempt negotiations single-handedly. The reasons for absence of non-official members shall also be clearly brought out in the proceedings indicating efforts made to ensure their presence.

 

10.        It has been decided to delete pare 87 of the Standing Order No. 28.  The provision was probably inserted in a situation where Government surrendered land voluntarily and that too soon after compulsory acquisition. This provision would be misplaced in a situation where prices have steeply escalated with the passage of time or the original owners have encroached upon the acquired land just because it has not been fully utilised. Even if this land is to be surrendered to the original owners, as  per Rules of Business of the Government of  Punjab, approval of the Council of Ministers would be required in each case after  consultation with Finance Department   as alienation of public land is involved.  In this connection  paras  493,  494,  495 and  495-A of the Land Administration  Manual which are essentially in the form of guidelines shall be separately amended being archaic.

 

                        A number of other paras of Standing  Order No. 28 have also been deleted being irrelevant in  the changed context.  A copy of amended Standing Order No.28 is enclosed. 

 

11.                   The Council of Ministers has decided that the Revenue Department will only function as nodal department for the administration of Land Acquisition Act, 1894.   Further, with a view to improve the content and quality of the Awards the Financial Commissioner Revenue would get the important verdicts given by various Courts compiled through some agency for the guidance of the Land Acquisition Collectors. The feed back from the Administrative Departments as well as from the field officers in this connection would be very much welcome !

 

Yours faithfully,

          Sd/-

      (RAJINDER SINGH)

Under Secretary Revenue, Punjab.

 

STANDING  ORDER

(Land  Acquisition  No. 28)

PART  A

 

A.                 A.                 Cases of Acquisition to which the provisions of Act I of 1894 are not applicable

 

1.         Proceedings under the Land Acquisition Act I of 1894 inappropriate - When it is proposed to transfer land in possession of Government, from one Government to another, or from one department to another, proceedings under Act I of 1894 are inappropriate.

 

            Land of this description may fall under the following categories :-

(1)        Land in possession of the Government of India;

(2)        Land in possession of the State Government :-

(a)                (a)                Nazul land;

(b)               (b)               Inferior evacuee land;

(c)                (c)                Other surplus evacuee land;

(d)               (d)               State Government lands (recorded generally in revenue record as

Provincial Government lands);

            Land under the possession of various departments such as Irrigation, Forests, etc.

 

2.         Rules regulating transfer of State lands and buildings between Central and State Governments, Government of India, Finance Department resolution No.D-3428-A, dated the 10th December, 1925 - Where some land under the ownership of the Central Government is surplus to its requirements and the same is required for any public purpose by the State Government, necessary reference for the purpose will have to be made to the Central Government in the Ministry concerned.  Such lands are normally transferred by the Central Government at market price.  A reference for the purpose may be made by the Collector or the Department requiring the land to the Revenue Department indicating the area of land which is required to be transferred alongwith relevant extract from the Jamabandi, the purpose for which it is required, and whether the scheme for which it is required has been sanctioned and included in the Plan or the budget.  It should also be accompanied by an estimate of the market price from the District Collector.

 

2.1     Certain surplus camping sites under the Ministry of Defence are available at some places which the Ministry of Defence may be prepared to transfer to the State Government at the market price.  The District Collectors while examining the proposals for land acquisition at those places should specifically examine whether the surplus camping sites cannot be utilized for the purpose.  This will save available agricultural land being acquired land also save the Government payment of 30% solatiums charges payable in the case of compulsory acquisition.

 

2.2       The proposals for transfer of surplus State Government land to the Central Government are normally received from the concerned Ministry in the Central Government.  Where a Collector or the Department of the State Government takes up the case for such transfer as the Central Project would be in the interest of the State, the proposal for the same should also be sent by the Administrative Department concerned or the Collector as the case may be, to the Revenue Department indicating the area of land proposed to be transferred, with copy of the relevant extracts from the Jamabandi and the purpose for which it is to be transferred.  The proposals should also be accompanied by an estimate of market price of the land from the District Collector.  Normally such transfers are to be made at the market price.  Where the Collector or the Administrative Department considers that the land should be  transferred free or at a concessional rate, the detailed justification for the same may be indicated in their proposal alongwith the assessment of the market price so that the financial implication of the proposal is available with Government while taking the decision.  These proposals should also include a report from the District Collector that the land is not required for any purpose by a Department of the State Government and its transfer will not adversely affect the utilization of other land under the ownership of the State Government where only a part of a compact area is proposed to be transferred.

 

3.         Acquisition of land owned by the Municipal Committee/Municipal Corporations - Where nazul land is vested or occupied by a Municipal Committee/ Municipal Corporation, the following procedure will be adopted :-

 

(a)               If the Municipal Committee or Municipal Corporation is merely custodian of the land on behalf of Government or land had been given to the Municipal Committee/Municipal Corporation by the Government for a specific purpose for which it  no longer needs it, the provisions of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, are of course inapplicable.  The Committee/Corporation should be consulted to see if there is any objection to the transfer, e.g., the land may have been leased out for a period or its retention may be necessary in the interest of the public.  If there is no objection or the Municipal Committee/Municipal Corporation does not need the land for the purposes for which it was given, the Government can resume the land and transfer departmentally or dispose it of as it likes.

 

(b)               If, however, the ownership of the land vests in the Municipal Committee/Municipal Corporation under the provisions of Section 56 of the Punjab Municipal Act, 1911, a notification might be required and compensation will have to be paid under the Land Acquisition Act but the ordinary course would be to ask the Municipal Committee/Municipal Corporation to proceed under section 59 of the Municipal Act, and the compensation would be settled by private negotiation.

 

            Other nazul land town sites in colonies and undeveloped land are in charge of the Deputy Commissioner, and the department for which land is required should apply to the Financial Commissioner through the Deputy Commissioner and the Commissioner.

 

3-A.     Transfer of Nazul land other than land owned or occupied by the Municipal Committee/Municipal Corporation - Nazul land situated beyond 2 miles of the Municipal limits is normally transferred to members of Scheduled Castes or landless persons of backward classes or sold in restricted auctions limited to members of Scheduled Castes.  The Nazul lands situated within the Municipal limits or two miles beyond are not transferred on the basis of possessions but these are disposed of in the following manner :-

 

(a)                In the first instance, this land should be retained by the Revenue Department, if it is required for its  own schemes/projects.  If it is not needed by the Revenue Department, then this land should be transferred to that Department for whose scheme/project it is suitable and is immediately required.

 

(b)               If land is not required for any Government Department then it should be transferred to the Municipal Committee/Corporation, or Improvement Trust or a Public Sector Undertaking, if they pay the current market price of this land.

 

(c)                If land is not disposed of in the above manner stated at (a) and (b) above, it shall be disposed of through open auction after fixing the current market price as reserve price.

 

3-A.1   Where nazul land falling within the Municipal limits (which is not owned by or under management of a Municipal Committee/Corporation) and upto 2 miles beyond the Municipal limits is required by any department for its own use or for a Public Sector Undertaking under its control, or by Local Government Department for a Municipal Committee, Corporation or Improvement Trust, it may refer the matter to the Revenue Department, alongwith particulars of the land proposed to be transferred, assessment of its market price from the District Collector and ‘No Objection Certificate’ for the transfer from the Collector.

 

3-B.   Transfer of Inferior evacuee land - The Policy regarding disposal of inferior evacuee land situated within the Municipal limits and upto 2 miles beyond the Municipal limit is similar to the one indicated in the above para in regard to Nazul land.  In case of such land also similar procedure may be followed where a Department requires such inferior evacuee land for its own purpose, or for a Public Sector Undertaking under its control, or in the case of Local Government Department for a Municipal Committee, Municipal Corporation or Improvement Trust.

 

3-C.     Transfer of surplus Evacuee land - Similar procedure may be followed where a Department requires any surplus evacuee land for its purpose, or for a Public Sector Undertaking under its control or in case of Local Government Department for a Municipal Committee, Municipal Corporation or Improvement Trust.

 

3-D.     Land in possession of Military Department - In all cases of land in cantonments, camping grounds in the vicinity of forts or otherwise occupied for military purposes, the consent of the defence authorities is necessary before it can be entered upon or occupied, or before any work can be commenced thereon.  The detailed procedure to be followed when land held for military purposes is required for railway purposes is laid down in Government of India’s Circular No.2650-RG, dated the 2nd September, 1913, viz., the sanction of the Government of India in the Army Department should be obtained (through the Quartermaster General in India) by the General Officer Commanding the Division or independent Brigade and should be generally observed in the acquisition of such land for any civil department of Government.

           

4.         Procedure when land required by the Irrigation Department in possession of the Forest Department - When lands, which are desired to be acquired on behalf of the Irrigation Department and are in possession of the Forest Department, the following procedure shall be observed :-

 

(1)               As soon as any such scheme is proposed an intimation shall be given to the local Forest Officer.

 

(2)               An index map and schedule of the land proposed to be acquired shall, as soon as is practicable be forwarded by the Superintending Engineer to the Conservator of Forests.  The index map and schedule will be similar to those prepared for and to be notified under the Act, the heading only of the schedule being altered.

 

(3)               If the land proposed to be acquired is not situated in a reserved or protected forest and is required merely for canal water-courses or banks or the like subsidiary purposes, the local forest officer may make it over to the canal officer concerned in anticipation of the sanction of the Financial Commissioner, Revenue for which he shall apply through the Conservator of Forests and Secretary to Government Punjab Forest Department.

 

(4)               In any other case, as for instance, where the land is required for colonization or when it is situated in a reserved or protected forest, the sanction of the Financial Commissioner, Revenue must not be anticipated.  In particular, no scheme for alienating land may be taken up by the Irrigation  Department until the Conservator’s consent shall have been obtained and in case of his not concerning in the proposal, the matter shall be referred by the Irrigation Department for the decision of Government in the Revenue Department.

 

5.         Procedure when land required by Irrigation Department is unclassed forest. The procedure prescribed in paragraph 4 in respect of lands required by the Irrigation Department which are in the possession of Forest Department applies, mutatis mutandis, to the case of unclassed forest or other undeveloped agricultural lands similarly required which are in the possession of the Deputy Commissioner.  This intimation will be given to the Deputy Commissioner; the index map land schedule will be forwarded through the Commissioner to the Financial Commissioner; land required for merely subsidiary purposes will be made over by the Deputy Commissioner in anticipation of Government sanction, for which he will apply through the Commissioner and Financial Commissioner, Revenue and no scheme for alienating land may be taken up by the Irrigation Department until the Financial Commissioner, Revenue’s consent shall have been obtained.

 

6.         Transfer of land already in possession of one department to another department of the State Government. Except as otherwise provided for forest lands in paragraph 4, the department for which land is required should, after consulting the local authorities of the department in possession of the land for the purpose of ascertaining whether there is any objection on their part to the transfer apply to the Revenue Department for the necessary transfer order.  Orders for transfer are passed by Financial Commissioner, Revenue if there is no difference of opinion.  If there is a difference of opinion between the two departments  the matter would be taken to the Council of Ministers by the Revenue Department after incorporating the views of the concerned department in the memorandum.

 

6A-1.   Rules regarding Credits and Debits Punjab Government Finance Department No.1246-SB, dated 17th June, 1926 - When any land or building is transferred from one department of the State Government to another the transfer shall be free of all charges, save as provided in the sub-paragraphs that follow.

 

6A-2.   If any land or building is transferred to or from a commercial department for which regular revenue and capital accounts are kept, the full market value of the land or building transferred shall be debited or credited as the case may be, to such department.

 

The only commercial department for the purposes of para 6A-2 are Colonization Department and the Irrigation and Power Department (Major Works and also Minor Works for which regular capital and revenue accounts are kept) of the State Government.

 

6A-3.   The following rules regulate the proper credits and debits to be made in case of transfer of land and buildings to or from a commercial department.

 

(a)        No credit or debit is to be made when the transfer is between non-commercial departments.

 

(b)        When the transfer is from a commercial department to a non-commercial department, no credit or debit is to be made unless the cost of the land or buildings  transferred  was previously debited to the capital head of the transferring department.  If the cost of land or buildings transferred was previously debited to the capital head of the transferring department, the credits will be made to the transferring department and the debit in accordance with the instructions contained in Schedules I and II of paragraph 6-D.

 

(c)        When the transfer is from a commercial to a commercial department, there should always be debit to the latter but the credit will be given to the transferring department or some other head in accordance with the instructions contained in Schedules I and II of paragraph 6-D.

 

(d)               When the transfer is from a non-commercial department to a commercial department there should be a debit to the latter and a credit to the transferring department in accordance with the instructions contained in Schedules I and II of paragraph 6-D.

 

6-B.     Award in case of Government land included in a notification under the Land Acquisition Act - Where land owned by Government is included in a notification issued under the Land Acquisition Act, the award shall deal with the Government land in the same manner as if it were privately owned, except that in the award statement no cash payment will be shown the transaction being recorded as a payment by book-transfer.

 

6-C.     Transfer of land from a commercial department – valuation to be accepted by the department to which the land is transferred - Where land is taken up for a commercial department by transfer, the transfer applied for will not be sanctioned until the valuation made by the Deputy Commissioner, has been accepted by the department to which it is proposed to be transferred.  When sanctioning the transfer the sanctioning authority will inform: (i) in the case of land transferred from the Railway, Canal or Colonization Department, the Chief Accounts Officer or the Chief Auditor of the Railway concerned or the Accountant-General and (ii) in the case of other land the Accountant-General and Deputy Commissioner concerned.  The Accounts Officer will raise necessary debit and credit to the heads specified in paragraph D.  The value of the forest land, whether under the control of Forest Department or of the Deputy Commissioner will not be credited to the Forest Department, but to V-Land Revenue but the timber on the land to be transferred if not previously disposed of should be separately valued and its value debited to the transferee department concerned and credited to the Forest Department.  It will usually be preferable to arrange for the Forest Department to dispose of the timber before transfer where it is possible to give sufficient time for this to be done.

 

            Government of India letter Nos. 538-A, dated 19th September, 1912 and 379-A, dated 16th April, 1913, Punjab Government letter No.79 (Forests), dated 17th February, 1911.

 

6-D.     Heads to which sale proceeds of land should be credited - The following Schedules show the heads to which the sale-proceeds of Government land and buildings are creditable.

 

Schedule I.—Sale-proceeds of land, etc. 

Head to which creditable

 

*(i) When the cost of the land was originally debited to the capital account or to the revenue account of any project for which regular capital and revenue accounts are kept.               

The capital or revenue account of the project, as the case may be (as recoveries of expenditure).

(ii) When the cost was originally debited to a capital expenditure head outside the revenue account even though no regular capital and revenue accounts are kept for the work covered by the capital expenditure.

The capital expenditure head originally debited (as recoveries of expenditure).

(iii) When the cost was originally debited within the revenue section of the accounts to any service of revenue department for which no capital and revenue accounts are kept.  

The receipt head relating to the department concerned or, in the case of department not having a corresponding receipt head “XXXV—Miscellaneous— Miscellaneous.”

(iv)       When the cost was not so debited—     

            (a)   the rights of Government in             agricultural land not covered by

                   clause (b).

V-Land Revenue.

            (b)   Nazul lands in the Uttar Pradesh,        the Punjab and Madhya Pradesh        and lands in the Punjab equipped        at the cost of provincial revenues        for resale for building purposes.

XXXV—Miscellaneous—Sale of lands and houses.

    

*NOTE:- In the case of land acquired by Government on payment for Companies, Railways or Government lands made over to such Railway by other Government Departments or Railways where the cost was originally debited to “subsidized companies land” or “guaranteed companies land”, the sale-proceeds are creditable to “subsidized companies” on receipt sides.

 

(c)        All other items--

XXXV—Miscellaneous—Miscellaneous Head to which Creditable.

Schedule II—Sale-proceeds of buildings including the actual area occupied by or auxiliary to a building—

(a)        When the cost of the building was originally debited to the capital account or to the revenue account of the project for which regular capital and revenue accounts are kept.

The capital or revenue accounts of the project as the case may be(as recoveries of expenditure).

(b)        When the cost of the building was originally debited to a capital expenditure head outside the revenue accounts even though no regular capital and revenue accounts are kept for the work covered by the capital expenditure.

The capital expenditure head originally debited (as recoveries of expenditure).

(c) When the sale affects irrigation, navigation, drainage and embankment works for which capital accounts are not kept.

XIV – Irrigation, Navigation, Embankment and Drainage Works for which no capital accounts are kept.

(d)       When the sale is of building the cost of which was originally debited within the revenue section of the accounts to any service or revenue department for which no capital or revenue accounts are kept.

The receipt head relating to the department concerned or, in the case, of department not having a corresponding receipt head “XXXV—Miscellaneous-Miscellaneous”.

(e)  In all other cases --

 

(i)  If sold in the Public  Works Department, Army Department, Indian Marine or Military Engineer Services.

XXX—Civil Works

XXXVI—Army;

XXXVII—Marine;

XXXVIII—Military Engineer

Services, respectively;

(ii) If sold by civil agency.

XXXV—Miscellaneous sale of land and houses.

 

NOTE:-Any special and non-recurring receipts unconnected with expenditure previously debited to a capital head falling under Schedules I and II of this rule may be credited to the Major Head “XI—Extraordinary Receipt” if the State Government desires to distinguish them from the ordinary revenues of the year, provided that the amount involved is so large as to justify this special treatment.

 

6-E.    Loaning of land to Government Department - In some districts the practice exists of taking over lands required for heads or channels of inundation canal “or for other specific purpose, e.g. construction of Schools, Hospitals, Seepage, Drains, etc.” without payment on the condition that when the land is no longer required for the purpose mentioned, it shall be restored to the former owner.  In such cases it is only necessary to obtain a written agreement from the owner of the land being loaned to Government rather than acquired.  “A Model form of the agreement is at appendix C”.

 

B.         PROCEDURE  FOR  ACQUISITION  OF  LAND  FOR  PUBLIC  PURPOSES

7.         Site Selection:  When it is necessary to provide land for a public purpose the acquiring department shall explore the possibility of utilizing available surplus Government lands and carry out a detailed exercise with reference to record of public properties available in the department as well as with the department of Revenue.  The assistance of the Deputy Commissioner concerned may be obtained for this purpose.  The department shall also draw up a list of its own properties in the concerned district-both vacant and under occupation and examine how much of this has been fully utilized and why the remaining cannot be utilized instead of proceeding with fresh acquisition.

 

8.         Two ways of acquiring land - In case it is found that acquisition of land is imminent for a public purpose the following two options will be available with the concerned department :--

 

(i)                 Acquisition by private negotiation.

(ii)                Compulsory acquisition under the provisions of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894.

           

            Decision to acquire land by private negotiation or by compulsory acquisition shall be taken at the level of Administrative Secretary of the department.  For negotiations part ‘C’ of the Standing Order may be referred to.  For compulsory acquisition the procedure is laid down in the succeeding  paras of this order.

 

9.         Preparation  of  data  for  notification  u/s 4 :--  When it is decided to acquire certain land by compulsory acquisition, an officer of the acquiring department not below the rank of the district head  shall prepare the following information :-

 

(i)                 Name of the village Hadbast No.  Tehsil and District.

(ii)                Details of Khasra Nos. with area and classification of land as shown in the jamabandi such as Chahi, Barani, Nehri, Pahar, Ghairmumkin abadi, Ghairmumkin Nadi etc..

(iii)              Copies of latest jamabandi regarding these khasra Nos.

(iv)              ‘Aks Shajra’ of the land proposed to be acquired.  This ‘shajra’ should give details of village ‘abadi’ within ‘lal lakir’, roads and canals including any bridges.  Size of ‘karam’ in inches should invariably be indicated in one corner of the Aks Shajra.

(v)               Site Plan of the land to be acquired showing structures/fixtures of high value including buildings, tubewells, mature/valuable trees particularly fruit bearing trees etc.

(vi)              A site plan of the surrounding area showing location of the land with reference to major roads, cities, village abadis/sub-urban areas and other important features.  The scale of the site plan should invariably be indicated.

(vii)            Acquiring department shall also provide a list of its properties in the district-both vacant and under occupation alongwith area in each case.  Justification will also be provided as to why the land available with the department cannot be used for the purpose.

 

Simultaneously  the  department  shall  proceed  to  issue  Notification  u/s  4  of  the  Land  Acquisition  Act, 1894.  It  shall  not  be  necessary  to  obtain  an  N.O.C.  before  issuing  this  notification.

 

10.       Preparation  of  a  notification  under  section  4.

 

(i)         The notification under section 4 shall be prepared by the officer of the acquiring department in the form given below :--

 

“Notification by Government under section 4, Act I of 1894.

 

                   Whereas it appears to the Governor of the Punjab that land is likely to be required to be taken by the Government at the public expense for a public purpose, namely for:-

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------, it is hereby notified  that land in the locality described below is likely to be required for the above purpose.”

 

            This notification is made under the provisions of section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, to all whom it may concern.

 

            In exercise of the powers conferred by the aforesaid section the Governor of Punjab, is pleased to authorize the officers for the time being engaged in undertaking with their servants and workmen to enter upon and survey any land in the locality and do all other acts required or permitted by that section.

 

            Any person interested who has any objection to the acquisition of any land in the locality may within thirty days of the publication of this notification file an objection in writing before the Collector of _____________________________________.

           

(SPECIFICATION)

 

District

Tehsil

Locality/Village

Khasra number with area

 

 

 

 

 

Note:-

 

(ii)        The draft notification shall be accompanied by a ‘Shajra Aks’ of the area prepared on the same scale as the scale adopted by the Revenue Authorities.  The boundaries of the area proposed to be acquired should be clearly demarcated on this ‘Shajra Aks’ which shall , however, not be required to be sent with the gazette notification.

 

(iii)       The draft notification should be accompanied by a statement giving full particulars of any religious buildings, tombs and graveyards on the land.  This procedure may, however, be dispensed with under the orders of the State Government in any case in which, owing to the large area involved or any other cause, the preparation of the necessary statement would cause excessive delay.

 

(iv)       The departmental officer will refer the draft notification to the Collector of the District  in which the land is situated with a view to having the entries therein (e.g. the name of the tehsils, Revenue Estate, Hadbast No., Khasra numbers etc.) checked.  The Collector will check the major points of description, but need not verify areas or refer the notification to the tehsildar or patwari.  After check the departmental officer will forward the notification through his departmental superiors to the Secretary to Government concerned for publication in the Gazette; and in two daily newspapers circulating in the locality wherein land is situated of which at least one shall be in regional language.

 

            The notification must be typed and not in manuscript, it must be in duplicate and the duplicate copy must be unsigned.

 

            As soon as the notification has been approved by Government in the department concerned, it shall be published in the manner set forth in Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894.  A copy of this notification alongwith the ‘Aks Shajra’ shall be pasted at the office of the District Collector and Land Acquisition Collector, at the tehsil office, Patwar Khana and a prominent public place in the village(s) concerned.

 

11.       Issue  of  No  Objection  Certificate  (NOC):

 

11.1          Authorities competent to issue N.O.C. :

 

The State Level Land Acquisition Board (SLLAB) shall be the competent authority for issuance of No Objection Certificate for the following class of cases :--

 

(i)         All cases of land acquisition under the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 involving an area of more than 25 acres;

 

(ii)        Cases of acquisition of area more than 5 acres in and on the periphery of all Municipal Towns.

 

(iii)       All cases of acquisition under the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 involving an area declared surplus under the Punjab Land Reforms Act, 1972.

 

The cases of acquisition of land under the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 for construction of drains for the purpose of flood control or anti-water logging operation are exempted from the requirement of ‘No Objection Certificate’ from the State Level Land Acquisition Board.

 

11.2     In all cases which are not referable to the State Level Land Acquisition Board the competent authority for issuance of N.O.C. shall be the Deputy Commissioner concerned.

 

 

11.3     Constitution of State Level Land Acquisition Board (SLLAB)

 

The State Level Land Acquisition Board shall consist of the following:-

 

             1.        Financial Commissioner, Revenue                                       .. Chairman

             2.        Financial Commissioner and Secretary to Government,

                         Punjab, Agriculture Department                                                ..Member

 

            3.         Principal Secretary, Town and Country Planning

Department                                                                            .. Member

 

4.         Principal Secretary, P.W.D. (B & R)                                                             .. Member

 

5.         Principal Secretary, P.W.D. (PH)                                                                  .. Member

 

6.         Principal Secretary, Finance                                                                          .. Member

 

7.         Principal Secretary, Irrigation and Drainage                                                           .. Member

 

8.         Principal Secretary, Housing and Urban Development                              .. Member

 

9.         Principal Secretary, Local Government                                                        .. Member

 

10.       Director Land Records/Acquisition                                                             .. Member

 

11.       Deputy Commissioner of concerned district                                                            .. Member

 

12.       Spl. Secy. Rev./Addl. Secy. Rev./Joint Secy. Rev.                                       .. Convener

 

 

Note:   The Secretary of the Acquiring Department, if he happens to be the Secretary of a Department other than those constituting the SLLAB, shall be co-opted as a member of the Board for purpose of consideration of the proposal of that department.

 

12.       Scrutiny  for  N.O.C. by DC/ SLLAB.

 

12.1     On receipt of reference for issuance of N.O.C. Deputy Commissioner shall examine the proposal and consult the Chief Agricultural Officer, Divisional Town Planner, Superintending Engineer P.W.D. (Buildings), Superintending Engineer P.W.D. (Roads),  Superintending Engineer (Drainage), Superintending Engineer (Irrigation), Superintending Engineer(Public Health) and also make such inquiry as he may consider  necessary.  In particular, he shall satisfy himself that the:

 

(i)                 Area proposed to be acquired is the minimum required for the scheme and possibility of constructing multi-story buildings has been considered.

 

(ii)                Acquiring department does not have surplus unutilized land available within the district which can be used for the purpose.

 

(iii)              No other Government land is available in the district which can be appropriately used for the purpose.

 

(iv)              No genuine religious place of worship, shrine, tomb, graveyard, Wakf or, any immovable property attached to any such institution, the boundaries of which are contiguous to the site of the same is being acquired.  If so, the acquiring department has consulted at least four legislators of the community concerned before taking action.  Where, however, the number of such legislators is less than four, he/they should be consulted.

 

(v)               The cultivated land particularly irrigated land and orchards are acquired only to the extent absolutely necessary.

 

(vi)              No surplus area declared under the land reforms legislation is being acquired unless it is absolutely necessary.

 

(vii)            The area owned by small landowners (owing less than 5 acres) is acquired only to the minimum extent necessary.

 

12.2   If the case falls within the competence of D.C., he shall, keeping in view the opinion of the said authorities and matters mentioned above, either issue ‘No Objection Certificate’ or suggest any practicable alternative in the Scheme or suggest an alternative site or may express his reservations to the acquisition giving reasons.   If the alternative proposed by the Deputy Commissioner is to be rejected by the acquiring department then cogent reasons shall be recorded before acquisition is further proceeded with.

 

12.3   If the case falls within the competence of SLLAB, Deputy Commissioner shall send his detailed report to A.D. for submission to SLLAB.  An advance copy of this report shall also be sent to the Revenue Department.  Apart from information listed at para 9 and 12.1 above, the SLLAB may require the acquiring department to submit reasonable details of the project to ensure that the financial tie-up exists and that the land is not excessive and shall not be left un-utilized indefinitely.  The acquiring department shall be required to render an account of utilization of its own land within the district.  The SLLAB may also require the acquiring department to indicate utilization of its land elsewhere in the State as in the case of acquisition relating to Industrial Estates and Housing Estates.  The Board may require the department to satisfy about the manner in which the cost of acquisition is proposed to be funded.

 

12.4     The Deputy Commissioner or the SLLAB should issue N.O.C. within a period of three months from the date of receipt of proposal complete in all respects.  In case the proposal is not found defective or incomplete but the decision is not taken within the above said period, it should be presumed that the Deputy Commissioner or the SLLAB as the case may be, has no objection to the acquisition of the proposed land.

 

13.       Constitution  of  District  Land  Price  Fixation  Committee (DLPFC)

 

          For the determination of market price there shall be a Standing Committee at the District level by the name of District Land Price Fixation Committee.  The Committee shall consist of—

 

            1.         Deputy Commissioner                                   .. Chairman

2.                  M.P. of the area;

3.                  M.L.A. of the area;

4.                  (For rural area)

(a)                Chairman, Block Samiti and where there is no Chairman the Block Development and Panchayat Officer;

(b)               Sarpanch of the village concerned

 

(For urban area)

 

Mayor/President of Municipal Corporation/Municipal Committee/Nagar Panchayat.  Where there is no Mayor/President, the Commissioner of the Municipal Corporation or the Executive Officer, as the case may be.

           

5.                  District Revenue Officer;

6.                  Sub-Divisional Magistrate                                         .. Convener

 

            Where the land to be acquired falls in more than one district, the Commissioner of the Division shall chair the meeting of the District Land Price Fixation Committee and in case the land falls in two or more Divisions then the meeting shall be chaired by the Commissioner who is senior amongst them.  Even in that case the main responsibility for guidance and coordination shall rest with the Deputy Commissioner in whose district the major portion of the area to be acquired is situated.

 

            District Land Price Fixation Committee shall also associate the district level representative of the acquiring department/Public Sector Undertaking concerned with every meeting of the Committee as also with the site visit, if conducted.

 

14.       Procedure  for  District  Land  Price  Fixation  Committees.

 

          The proceedings regarding issue of N.O.C. by DC/SLLAB and fixation of market price by District Land Price Fixation Committee shall run simultaneously.  The list of factors that should weigh with DLPFCs while determining the market  price of land can at best be illustrative and not exhaustive.  All data listed for presentation to SLLAB shall also be placed before the DLPFC.  In addition data in relation to sale transactions in the area during one year preceding the notification under section 4 of the Act shall also be furnished as per details below :--

 

Serial No.

No. & date

of  Regist-ration

of the sale

Area

 

Class-

wise

Consideration

Remarks

(i)   Data of sale transactions in the village during the year preceding the Notification u/s 4 of the Act (Give Sl..No. of transactions date wise.)

 

(ii)  Date of sale transactions in the vicinity of the land acquisition (Give distance of the vicinity and name of village, Hadbast etc.)

 

(iii) Average rate per acre of various kinds of land as worked out from the transactions in S.No.(i) above.

 

(iv) Average rate per acre for various kinds of land as worked out from the transactions mentioned in S.No. (ii) above.

 

(v) Particulars of award, if any, announced in the village during last 5 years.

 

(vi) Particulars of Award, if any, announced in the vicinity during the last five years (name of village Hadbast No. distance from acquired land)

 

(vii)Particulars of Court decisions, if any, announced in the village during last 5 years.

 

(viii) Particulars of Court decisions, if any announced in vicinity during the last 5 years. (name of village, hadbast No. distance from acquired land)

 

(ix)Present land use of area proposed to be acquired.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(x) Whether any part of land has any special features such as nearness to abadi or main road to justify higher price ? (Also refer to ‘Shajra Aks’ and site plan and site plan of surrounding area).

 

(xi) Whether there were any special feature in the land sold during the past one year which may justify approval of rates lower than the average rates ?

 

(xii)Video film, if any, of the area taken after notification under section 4.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Date of Award

 

 

 

-do-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Date of decision

 

 

 

-do-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Date of noti-

fication under Section 4

-do-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Date of notification under section 4

 

-do-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Agri-culture

Horti-culture

 

 

Forest/

other trees

 

 

 

Dairying

 

 

Poultry

 

Fisheries

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rates per acre for various classes of land

 

 

-do-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rates per acre allowed

 

 

 

-do-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total area

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other allied Activities

 

Residential

 

Commercial etc.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Remarks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Remarks

 

Any special fruit trees and approx. Nos.,

Any special variety e.g. katha khair approx. Nos.,

 

No. of cattle heads etc.

 

No. of units birds

 

 

Approx. value

-do-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(xiii)     While considering the market value of the land provisions of Section 23 and 24 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 may also be kept in view.

 

15.     Guidelines for District Land Price Fixation Committee - As would be seen from para 14 above, the list of factors which can be considered relevant while arriving at the market price of land can at best be illustrative and can never be exhaustive.  Just as in partition cases a mode of partition is framed in consultation with the parties and certain clauses are listed as relevant/crucial to decision making, in the same manner after the initial scrutiny of the data members of DLPFC should list out important considerations that should determine the price of the area and also list out factors which need to be ignored.  They may even prioritize these factors and visit the site, if considered necessary.  This would give an idea regarding the factors which would be relevant for price fixation in the circumstances peculiar to that particular area.

 

Over the years due to rapid urbanization and the land becoming a scarce commodity, locational factors like proximity to a road, a town, an urban agglomeration and even the direction in which a city is expanding have assumed far greater importance in determining the market price rather than whether  a land is ‘chahi’ or ‘barani’ or even ‘banjar’.  Rather, such a distinction primarily based on kind of land may leave unwarranted discretion in the hand of the Land Acquisition Collector.  For determining market price, therefore, the distinction between various classes of land such as ‘chahi’ and  ‘barani’ can no longer be considered relevant at the time of acquisition unless there are strong reasons to act otherwise. Thus, a distinction may have to be made if the land is rocky or there are steep hills or deep depressions of sand dunes which in the normal course would fetch very low market price and its land use would be very restricted and the cost of development would be high; share of khewatdars in ‘Nadis’ would also fall in this category. There may even be a case for recommending higher rates on the basis of locational advantage e.g., for fields along the main road irrespective of whether the land is ‘chahi’ or ‘barani’ as compared to irrigated/chahi fields in the interior.

 

            As per provisions of the Land Acquisition Act, the market price is to be determined on the date of notification under section 4 and not on the date on which the recommendations are made by the DLPFC.  Therefore, the Committee must insist upon the department to furnish the details of transactions strictly for the period prior to the date of notification under Section 4 of the Act.

 

            DLPFC shall conclude its proceedings in a manner to allow adequate time for taking decision regarding issue of declaration under section 6 and not later than six months from the issue of notification under section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act.  Since these recommendations are to substitute the Collector’s rates as per the earlier Standing Order, they shall be detailed and self-speaking and also contain reference to any difference of opinion expressed by the department.  They should specifically mention the rates recommended earlier for any other area in the districts, make comparisons and justify variation and also mention any recent enhancement in Award made by the Courts in district, vicinity, village or locality.

 

            The onus for conducting meetings of the DLPFC in a purposeful manner will be of the Deputy Commissioners and it will be their duty that all material data is presented to the Committee and their recommendations are justified fully on the basis of facts and figures. A lumpsum amount will only be proposed if it represents a negotiated price. Even then it shall be clarified whether it includes solatium, interest etc. or not.

 

16.       Valuation of fixtures/structures, trees etc.

 

As soon as possible after a notification under section 4 is issued, the Land Acquisition Collector shall obtain report from competent technical officers regarding exact number and valuation of structures, trees, wells, tubewells etc. on the land to be acquired. For this purpose, the Land Acquisition Collector shall ensure that the meetings of the various Technical Committees are held promptly after notification under section 4. Their rough assessment must be made available prior to notification under section 6 to enable the Administrative Department to make up its mind. In case of buildings, XEN, PWD (B&R), in case of tubewells XEN, PWD (Public Health), in case of fruit bearing trees Deputy Director, Horticulture, and for other trees Divisional Forest Officer shall be competent technical officers. In case of buildings, wells, tubewells and other installations falling under jurisdiction of Irrigation Department , Executive Engineers of the Irrigation Department will also be competent technical officers.

 

          The Administrative Department/Public Sector Undertaking may, however, associate its own technical staff with the competent technical officers concerned , and this staff may submit a separate report in case they differ with the recommendations being made by the competent technical officers. To add to the reliability of this data cataloguing /video filming/photography of important structures, fixtures, afforested area or cluster of valuable trees/fruit bearing trees may be resorted to in the presence of a representative of the department and an Executive Magistrate designed by the Deputy Commissioner immediately after the notification under section 4.For large tracts of land e.g. urban estates, and industrial projects, even aerial photography may be resorted to.  The cost of this exercise shall be borne by the acquiring department.  This cost will have to be provided by the department even though at certain stage it chooses not to proceed with the acquisition of the land.  Standard per acre cost can be worked out and accordingly the Administrative Department should place funds at the disposal of Land Acquisition Collector, in the very beginning.

 

17.       Procedure for the concerned department – Approval of market rate :

 

The representative of the acquiring department who was associated with the deliberations of the DLPFC shall independently send his observations to his administrative department, if he so desires.

 

In case the recommendations of the DLPFC are acceptable to the Administrative Department these shall be transmitted to the LAC.  In case the market rates recommended by the Deputy Commissioner/DLPFC are found to be unrealistic the acquiring department may refer them back to the committee for re-consideration stating the grounds necessitating it.  After the matter is reconsidered by the Committee and their revised recommendations are still found to be unacceptable, the matter may be referred to the SLLAB together with reasons for difference of opinion and the entire data relevant for decision making.  It must be ensured that the needful is done prior to issuing a notification under section 6 of the Act.

 

The LAC shall not have power to vary the market rates more than 10% on either side after taking into consideration the other evidence produced before him in case he decides to differ with the market rates transmitted to him.

 

The Land Acquisition Collector will also report to the Administrative Department the objections filed by the landowners and other interested parties.

 

Based on position emerging from paras 14, 15, 16 above, the Administrative Department shall proceed to decide whether a notification is to be issued under section 6 of the Act or not, or whether it is to be modified in any manner or any area is to be left out of the acquisition proceedings.  Rough cost estimates of compensation payable for structures and fixtures must also be made available for the same purpose.

 

18.       Rate to be finalised before notification under section 6  - It is reiterated that each department is expected to ensure that the Collector’s rates are available before proceeding with a notification under section 6 of the Act, as the financial requirements have an important role in decision-making.  There is no bar to a department arriving at a negotiated price with the land owners at any stage in the acquisition proceedings prior to the announcement of the Award.  The procedure is laid down in paras 20 to 27 of the Standing Order.  The procedure is specially effective where drains are dug up under urgency provisions of the Act.  Similarly where structures are to be raised as in the case of Sewerage Treatment Plants and transformers/Power houses of the Electricity Board, and urgency provisions of section 17 have been invoked, negotiations must be attempted immediately.  The services of DLPFCs should be utilized by the Departments if there is any hesitation on its own part to attempt these negotiations single handedly.  In any case there is no point in leaving the exercise of price fixation in such cases till the last minute since land cannot be abandoned once it is put to use.

 

19.       Administrative department competent to examine the record of Land Acquisition Collector - Although the decision on quantum of compensation is considered quasi-judicial, this does not preclude the Administrative Department from exercising appropriate supervision over its Land Acquisition Collector. As per Section 15(A) of the Act the appropriate Government may at any time before the Award  is made by the Collector under Section 11 call for any record whether by way of inquiry or otherwise for the purpose of satisfying itself as to its legality and propriety etc.  This provision gives the Government  power to examine cases where it is considered that any irregularity or illegality by LAC will lead to  announcement of Award for a substantially higher amount.  The department should, therefore, satisfy itself not only about the propriety and quantum of Collector’s Rates but also about the quality and quantum of recommendations/assessment made by the Technical Committees. With proper supervision at this stage it should be possible for the department to avoid manipulation of data and inflated Awards.  Video filming/aerial photography  has already been provided for in para 16.

 

For purpose of section 11 and 15-A of the Land Acquisition Act the word ‘appropriate Government’ shall mean Government in the Department concerned and ‘authorised officer’ shall imply the Administrative Secretary concerned.

 

B (I) PROCEDURE  OF COLLECTORS AFTER ISSUE OF NOTIFICATION UNDER SECTION 4

 

19-A(a) Act XXXVIII of 1923- The disposal of objections.  Any person interested (see note under paragraph 17, supra) in any land which has been notified under section 4 sub-section (I), may within 30 days from the date of publication of the notification,  object to the acquisition of the land or of any land in the locality, as the case may be.  Every such objection must be made to the Collector in writing ; and the following procedure is to be observed for the disposal thereof :-

 

(i)                  When the Collector receives an objection he shall fix a date for hearing it and shall give notice of the date to the objector and to the officer of the department, or to the local body, on whose application the notification under section 4 has been issued.

 

            It will generally be convenient to hear all objections after the limit of thirty days has expired.

 

(ii)                On the date fixed for hearing, if the objector appears either in person or by any person authorised by him or by his pleader, that Land Acquisition Collector shall give him adequate opportunity of making representation in support of his objection and producing evidence that he wishes to produce.  If the objector fails to appear in person or by any person authorised by him in this behalf, the Collector may, if he thinks fit, make, an ex parte enquiry regarding the objection.  In either case, he shall without unnecessary delay , report his opinion as to the validity of each ground of the objection.

 

(iii)               The Collector shall forward his report together with the record of his proceedings direct to the Secretary of the corresponding Department of the State Government, if the acquisition is for a department of the Central Government or a Central Government undertaking and to the Secretary concerned when it pertains to a State subject.

 

(iv)              No costs shall be allowed. 

 

(b)        If the State Government after consideration of the report of the Collector decides to withdraw from the acquisition proceedings, the notification under section 4 of the Act shall be cancelled without delay.

 

NOTE:-THE LAST OF THE DATE ON WHICH THE NOTIFICATION UNDER SECTION 4 IS PUBLISHED IN THE GAZETTE OR THE TWO NEWSPAPERS OR IN THE LOCALITY WILL BE TREATED AS DATE OF PUBLICATION OF THE NOTIFICATION.

19-B.    Deleted.

C.     Acquisition  by  Private  Negotiation

 

20.       Advantages of Acquisition by private negotiation - When the preliminary estimate has been sanctioned by  competent authority it is to be determined whether the land should be acquired,—

 

(1)               by private negotiation; or

(2)               compulsorily under the Act.

 

The advantage of purchase by private negotiations is that the 30% of the market price which has to be paid as solatium for acquisition under the Act is saved.  The risk of a higher price having to be paid subsequently as a result of decisions by the Courts is also eliminated.  In some cases purchase by private negotiations may also be speedier than by acquisition under the Act.  On the other hand, under the statutory procedure there is perhaps less risk of an extravagant valuation and compliance with the necessary formalities ensures the vesting of the land absolutely in the Government free of all encumbrance.  Where there is the faintest doubt regarding the title of the person in possession or where there is any reason to fear that the land may be encumbered to an unknown extent, private negotiation is out of the question. In other cases, decision to purchase land by private negotiations should be taken at the level of the Head of Administrative Department  concerned.  If it is decided to purchase the land by private negotiation, the negotiations should be conducted by the officers of the Department concerned.  The Deputy Commissioners will, however, supply them with preliminary estimate of value and the Collector’s rate just as they would do in a case in which it is proposed to acquire land under the Act.

 

NOTE:-           The State Government will not undertake any acquisition of land by private negotiations for any department of the Government of India or any other State Government.

 

21.     Initial proceedings when acquisition is by private agreement - Even where land is proposed to be acquired by negotiations it is desirable that preliminary notification under section 4 is issued so that in the event of failure of negotiations the land can be acquired under the Land Acquisition Act without further delay.

 

22.       Duties of Deputy Commissioners when acquisition is by private agreement - The Deputy Commissioners shall render to officers of other Departments conducting  private negotiations preliminary estimates in the manner described in part B of this order.  But a Deputy Commissioner shall not carry out private negotiations for any other Department unless the department acquiring the land has itself failed to acquire land by such negotiations and has requested for D.C.’s help in the matter.

 

23-I.    Abstract of title to be obtained - The Officer conducting the negotiations must in each case obtain from the vendor a complete abstract of title extending over the full period of limitation for suits relating to immovable property (twelve years) supported by all documents of title on which the vendor relies, and accompanied by strict proof of all matters and facts forming a link in the chain of his title.

 

23-II.   Original documents to be examined - It is not sufficient to obtain mere copies of documents of title; it is of the prime importance to examine such documents in original where title rests upon that.

 

23-III. Precautions to be taken in the case of minor vendors - If the vendor is a minor he can act only through his guardian and the competence of the guardian should be scrutinized particularly in the case of Muslims.  If there is no guardian, competent to alienate the minor’s rights one would have to be sought from the civil court.

 

24.       Procedure for concluding a bargain by private negotiation- The procedure to be followed in concluding a bargain by private negotiation is as follows :-

 

(a)                Agricultural land - When agricultural land is to be acquired, and the jamabandi entries for 12 years show an undisputed title, and the value of the land does not exceed Rs.2,000 a Deputy Commissioner, may, with the sanction of the Commissioner of the Division acquire the land.  In reporting the matter for sanction, the Deputy Commissioner should submit copies of the jamabandi entries and the draft deed of sale.

 

(b)               Other cases - In other cases the officer concerned must submit to the head of his department a report with full details showing the nature of the land, the persons interested in it, and the nature of their claims.  The report must be accompanied by the proof of title described in paragraph 23-I above and a draft of sale.

 

(c)                A model form of sale deed is annexed as appendix A; but Commissioners and Heads of Departments should submit the draft sale deed to the Legal Remembrancer for approval in every case where a special condition is to be agreed upon and in every other case of doubt.  If the special condition is to be performed before the deed is executed, the officer concerned should see to its actual performance before he executes the deed; and the fact that the condition has been performed, should be recited in the first appropriate blank space in the model form.  Other types of conditions, e.g., restrictive covenants by the vendor where he retains other land adjoining the actual land sold will be unnecessary because the model form conveys all easements, etc., but even in such cases the existence of such a easement, etc., could with advantage, be recited and even emphasized as “special conditions”.

 

            When incorporating any special condition in the model form the circumstances of the proposed condition should be inserted in the space left for the purpose in the recitals and operative portion respectively so as to bring them clearly to the notice of the Legal Remembrancer. Further, the conditions should be defined where necessary in a plan or schedule or both.

 

            These remarks apply mutatis mutandis to covenants undertaken by the President as vendee.

 

25. I     Conclusion of negotiation –    On receipt of the Commissioner’s sanction or the sanction of the head of the department as described in the preceding paragraph, the officer concerned will inform the vendor of his readiness to conclude the transaction on the vendor’s-

 

(a)       handing over possession of the land sold and all former title deeds relating to it, and

(b)      executing and causing to be registered and delivered to such officer a valid deed of sale, on proper stamped paper in the form supplied by such officer at the time and that on the vendor’s complying with those requirements, the purchase money will be paid to him. (Government of India, Home Department - Judicial, No. 485-501,dated the 28th March, 1895).

           

 25-II-A           Signatures of Deputy Commissioner, when necessary - A conveyance in favour of Government ordinarily only requires execution by the vendor. If the instrument in any case contains stipulations binding on Government in favour of the vendor  then the signature of the Deputy Commissioner is necessary.

 

26.I      Statement required at the time of payment - At the time of making  payment to the vendors, the officers concerned shall draw up a statement in the form given below :-

 

Date of statement____________________________________

 

Name of work for which land has been bought_____________

 

No. and date of letter of head of department sanctioning opening of private

 

negotiation : No._______________________dated__________

 

Date of letter sanctioning purchase No.________________dated_______

                       

            Statement showing the price settled by the parties for a plot of land situated in the village of____________________No. in tehsil __________district acquired by private negotiation :-

 

      1.

      2.

      3.

     4.

      5.

      6.

      7.

     8*

Serial No.

Name of person to whom payments due

Area of

land

Khasra

and jamabandi numbers

of land

Abate-ment of land revenue

Total amount due to each person

No. and date of Voucher

No.     Date

Date on which possession was taken

             

  *To be filled in by the auditing office.

 

            Officers acquiring the land are requested to note at the foot of the statement the harvest from which the abatement of land revenue is to have effect.

 

26-II.   With reference to column 5 of the above statement, it must be remembered that the statement showing the reduction in the land revenue (vide paragraph 79 infra) is to be submitted whether the land is acquired by private negotiation or compulsorily.

 

27.       Payments how to make - Payments should be made in accordance with the entry in column 6 of the above statement and receipts or an acquittance roll taken from the vendors in the same way as in the case of acquisition under the Act (see paragraph 75 infra).  The officer purchasing the land will forward the statement prepared under paragraph 26 supra and receipts or acquittance roll to the audit officer with whom he is in account (see para 76 infra) when forwarding to him the account of the month in which payments are made.

 

27-A.   Payments –when to make - In order to avoid any possible claims for interest, payments must be made before or immediately after taking possession.  If for any reason this course is impracticable, the circumstances of the case are to be reported through the Commissioner and Financial Commissioner for the information of the Government in the acquiring department.

 

D.        Compulsory  Acquisition  under

Act I   of  1894

 

28.       General instructions - Where action is taken under this part, i.e., the land is acquired compulsorily it is essential to conclude the transaction with as much expedition as is compatible with accuracy.  When the Collector of the district knows that a notification under section 6 is likely to issue, he should have all preparations complete as regards acquiring officer, establishment forms, etc. so that on issue of the notification the proceedings may begin at once.  Under ordinary circumstances the transaction should not take more than six months after issue of the notification under section 6.  When necessary the service of a special officer should be applied for (vide paragraph 32 infra).

 

29.       General Instruction  - All correspondence should be marked “Land Acquisition” urgent so that the least possible delay be caused in dealing with it in the different offices.

 

30-I Notification under section 6 – A notification under section 6 must issue in all cases in which it is intended to put Act I of 1894 in force.  As in the case of a notification under section 4, it will be prepared by the departmental officer, in the form given below, and sent by him to the Collector of the district for check and should similarly be accompanied by a statement giving full particulars of any religious buildings, tombs, and graveyards on the land.  As in the case of a notification under section 4 this step may be dispensed with under the order of  State Government in any case in which owing to the large area involved or any other cause, the preparation of necessary statements would cause inordinate delay.  The check will be of the same nature as that described in paragraph 17-III, supra.  After it has been checked the draft notification will be drawn up in duplicate exactly in the same way as a notification under section 4.

 

30-II.   Form of Notification - After check the notification will be returned to the departmental officer concerned and forwarded by him to the head of his department for submission to the Secretary to Government concerned for publication in the Gazette.

 

The notification will be in the following form: -

 

Notification by Government in Gazette under section 6, (Act I of 1894).

 

            Whereas it appears to the Government of the Punjab that land is required to be taken by Government on the public expense for a public purpose, namely,____________________________________and _________________________it is hereby declared that the land described in the specification below is required for the above purpose.

 

            This declaration is made under the provisions of section 6 of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, to all whom it may concern and under the provisions of section 7 of the said Act, the Collector of__________, is hereby directed to take order for the acquisition of the said land.

 

            Plans of the land may be inspected in the offices of the Collector of______________________________district and of the Executive Engineer,________________________________,Division_____________________________________________.

 

SPECIFICATION

 

District_________________________, Mauza______________________

Tehsil__________________________, Area in Acres_______________

 

DIRECTIONS AND BOUNDARIES

 

North---------belonging to-----son of-----son of--------------of-----

East-----------belonging to-----son of-----son of--------------of----

South---------belonging to-----son of-----son of--------------of-----

West----------belonging to-----son of-----son of--------------of----

 

NOTE:-           The law requires that the description of land should be specific.  Thereafter, small areas required for hospitals, schools etc.  may be described by their khasra numbers.  But in the case of bigger schemes like the building and roads of irrigation projects, a broad description should be given followed by the demarcation of site which should be completed within 15 days after the issue of the notification.  In such cases the description should, however, be specific and definite and not too general.

 

 

II.A.    Report of Collector w.r.t. objections - The Collector should also prepare and submit confidentially to Government in the acquiring department through his superior officer, a note dealing with the nature of, and weight to be attached to, objections which have already been raised or are likely to be raised by persons directly or indirectly interested or by any section of the public.  If no objections have been raised or are anticipated the fact should be stated, and it should at the same time be explained whether in the event of acquisition the demolition of the buildings or obliteration of the tombs will be necessary.

 

31-I         Explanation to accompany the draft notification: - The Land Acquisition Collector while sending the draft declaration under section 6 to the Head of acquiring Department should certify that he has adequate staff to complete the proceedings within the time schedule prescribed by Government.  He may indicate any short-falls in staff which it is essential to rectify for ensuring that the acquisition proceedings are completed according to the prescribed time schedule.  It will be accompanied by a certificate that private negotiations are considered inexpedient or have been unsuccessful.

 

31-II (a) Departments to whom the notifications are to be sent – Acquisition of land for State Govt. Department: - Heads of Departments will forward the draft notifications direct to the Secretary to Government in the Department concerned primarily with the public purpose for which land is to be acquired and who is responsible for the provision of funds for the acquisition of land.  They should be careful to ensure that notifications for the acquisition of land are forwarded to the proper department of Government as for instance the notifications relating to the works under the management and control of the Public Works Department, Buildings and Roads Branch, shall be forwarded for disposal to the Secretary to Government, Punjab, Public Works Department, Buildings and Roads Branch.  Similarly, all notifications required for the purposes of works under the Irrigation Department shall be forwarded to the Secretary to Government, Punjab, Irrigation and Power Department.  But as acquisition of the land for minor canals is governed by sections 44(3) and 45 of the Punjab Minor Canals Act, 1905, the notifications are issued in the Revenue Department of Government unless the canal in question is exclusively under the control of the Irrigation Branch of the Public Works Department.

            The acquiring Department at the time of issue of declaration under section 6 should take necessary steps to get adequate staff provided to the Land Acquisition Collector concerned or to entrust the work to some other Land Acquisition Collector who may be able to complete the work in the prescribed time schedule.

 

(b)        Department to whom application are to be sent – Acquisition of land for Central Government departments - For acquisition of land for a department of the Central Government, or another State Government, all notifications shall be forwarded to the Department under the Punjab Government corresponding to or doing work similar to that of the department under the Central Government or another State Government, as the case may be, which wishes to acquire land (Government Notification No.F-26(5)/57/J II, dated the 20th February, 1957) unless the Government of India have undertaken to acquire land themselves.  Thus notifications relating to the Income-tax Department and Central Board of Revenue shall be forwarded for disposal to the Excise and Taxation Department for Defence Works to the Home Department for Railways to P.W.D. (B & R) for Food Corporation of India to Food and Supplies Department, etc.

 

The notification relating to the Indian Posts and Telegraphs Departments shall be

forwarded to the Public Works Department, Buildings and Roads Branch.

 

31-A  Procedure in the acquiring Department – I - The acquiring department shall consider the objections, if any, that may have been received under Section 5-A of the Act unless urgency provisions have been invoked and where it finally decides to acquire land, issue declaration under Section 6 of the Act.  Before issue of this declaration the acquiring department should satisfy itself that—

 

(i)                 a  realistic estimate of the compensation to be paid for the land proposed to be acquired has been made in consultation with the Deputy Commissioner concerned.  The market price as indicated by the Deputy Commissioner concerned for this purpose will need to be enhanced by 12 per cent per annum till the date on which the award is likely to be made, besides a solatium at the rate of 30 per cent in order to arrive at a realistic figure about the compensation likely to be payable; and

 

(ii)                adequate provision has been made in the budget for the payment of compensation.  Where the decision to acquire land is taken after the finalization of the budget or the compensation could be paid in subsequent years, a clearance from the Finance Department may be obtained that the necessary funds would be provided for payment of compensation during the year in which compensation would become payable.

 

II.         Since the Land Acquisition Collector will have to tender 80 per cent of the compensation for land estimated by him before taking possession under the urgency provisions, it will be necessary for the acquiring department to make necessary funds available to the Land Acquisition Collector simultaneously with the despatch of declaration under Section 6 for publication.  Any delay in receipt of funds by the Land Acquisition Collector will not only delay the taking over of the possession but may also involve the risk of the declaration being struck down by the courts on the ground that if Government could delay taking over possession, it could also provide opportunity to the affected persons to file objections.

 

31-B.   Time limit for declaration under section 6 - The declaration under Section 6 shall be published in (a) the Official Gazette (b) two daily newspapers circulating in that locality of which at least one shall be in the regional language and (c) substance of such notification is to be notified at conspicuous places in the said locality.  Under the Amendment Act, the declaration under section 6 has now to be issued within one year from the date of publication of notification under Section 4 (In case of notifications which were issued before commencement of the Amendment Act, viz., 24th September 1984, the limit is 3 years from the date of publication of the notification).   The notification under Section 4 will thus lapse if declaration under Section 6 is not published within one year of the publication of Section 4 notification.  In that case, a fresh notification under section 4 will have to be issued and the market price will be taken afresh as on the date of the fresh notification.  Since this involves higher amount of compensation, apart from delay in the execution of the schemes, it is essential that declaration under Section 6 is published before the expiry of this time limit.  It may be noted that the last of the dates on which a declaration is published in (a) the official gazette, (b) two daily newspapers and (c) in the locality will be treated as the date of publication of the declaration.  It has, therefore, to be ensured that the publication of the declaration in all these forms is completed before the expiry of the one year limit.

 

32-I.    Procedure after issue of notification under section 6 -When the notification under section 6 has been published in the Gazette, all further proceedings rest with the Collector or other officer specially empowered by Government to perform the functions of a Collector under section (3)(c) of the Act.

 

32-II.   When a special officer or additional clerical staff should be applied for - When the area of land to be thus acquired is so considerable that the appointment of a special officer or additional staff for the work seems advisable, the collector of the district or head of the department concerned will apply to the Commissioner of the Division or Administrative Department in Acquiring Department, as the case may be who will take such steps for sanctioning of posts of Special Officer or additional staff. The special rules applicable to the special officer will be found in part F below.

 

32-III. Results of negotiations to be intimated to the collector - With a view to guarding against claims, there is no objection to the communication by the acquiring department to the acquisition officer of the results of any negotiations which the acquiring department may have entered into with the parties to be expropriated previous to the opening of proceedings under the Act.

 

E—PROCEDURE OF COLLECTORS AFTER ISSUE OF A NOTIFICATION UNDER SECTION 6

 

33.       Procedure of acquiring officer empowered under section 7 - When the Collector or other officer invested with the powers of a collector has received a direction under section 7 of the Act to take order for the acquisition of the land, he will proceed in accordance with the provisions of section 8 et. Seq.

 

34-I.          Land to be marked out - Under section 8 of the Act the acquiring officer will send to the tehsildar (if necessary through the Collector of the district) a copy of the notification under section 6, and have the land marked out and measured.  At the time of marking out and measuring the land an officer of the Department for which the land is to be acquired should, if possible, be present, and see that the boundaries are correctly aligned.

 

34-II.   Treatment of discrepancies in measurement - Proceedings should not be stayed merely, because when action is taken under section 8, it is found that there is a discrepancy between the land to be acquired and the description or measurements of the land given in notification, provided the notification describes the land with approximate correctness and the owners in this and other areas have had due notice of Government’s intention to acquire the land, the acquisition should be completed, and no revised notification need be issued.

 

35.       Form of notice under section 9 - The notice to persons interested in the land, required to be served under section 9 of the Act, shall be in the form given below:--

 

            Notice to persons interested in land to be acquired under Act I of 1894.

 

            Whereas the under mentioned land is about to be taken up for a public purpose, namely,_______________________________________under notification of the Punjab Government No.______________________published in the Punjab Gazette of__________________________and in two daily newspapers circulating in the locality, namely________________of___________________ and also published in the locality.  All persons interested in the said land are hereby called upon to attend personally or by agent at (place)_________________on the ______________(dated) at _____o’clock to state the nature of their respective interests in the land and the amount and particulars of their claims to compensation for such interests.

 

            This notice is issued under section 9 of Act 1 of 1894.

 

Boundaries:--

            North                          East                                         Extent

            South                          West

           

            Dated                          20                                            Collector

 

36-I.    Statement of values and owners - In order to facilitate the enquiry into the value of the land and into the claim of persons interested the acquiring officer will cause statement in the form given below to be prepared by the tehsildar or other competent revenue officer, as noted in paragraph 471, Land Administration Manual.

FORM (i)

Sr. No.

Khasra number whole or part

Khatauni number

Total area

Of Field (in local measures)

Owner mortgagee, mafidar, or other person interested

Area Taken Up  (in local

measures)

Revenue or  land  taken up

Rent per acre or local measures

Cash    Kind   Class

                        Of

                        land                                                                   

Crops, trees, wells, Or houses  on  land  taken  up

Value of such crops, trees, wells, houses

Remarks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                       

FORM (ii)

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

Sr. No.

Jamabandi

and  Khatauni number

Names of owners, etc.

Names of occupancy tenants

Khasra number, whole or

 part

Total area of land

in holding taken up

 (in acres)

Classes of land taken up

Crops, trees, wells or houses on land taken up

Value of crops, etc. shown in column 3

Reve-nue payable

on the land taken up

Remarks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

36-II.   Report giving data for estimate of market value - These statements will give in a tabular form most of the information necessary to come to a decision as to the compensation to be awarded.  Statement No.1 will give details for each khasra number while statement No.2 will merely give the totals for each holding.

 

36-III. Copy of field map to be filed with the proceedings  - Care should be taken that a copy of the portion of the settlement field map, in which the land taken up is situated with the boundaries of the land marked on it is filed with the patwari’s papers and with the proceedings of the case.

 

37.       Report when to be completed - The statement and the report should be completed and checked before the date fixed in the notice issued under section 9 for the attendance of parties and enquiry into claims.

 

38.       Notice to departmental officer - The acquiring officer must give at least 15 days previous notice of the date fixed under section 9 to the departmental officer acting on behalf of the department for the acquisition of the land, in order that he may have an opportunity of making in person, by agent or by letter, any representation regarding its value, which he may think necessary.  The notice shall be accompanied by a copy of the statements and report prepared under paragraph 36 supra or in cases in which the file is too bulky for copies to be conveniently prepared, the notice shall inform the departmental officer that this is the case and that the file is open to inspection by him or by any other officer named by him, on a day not later than two days before the date fixed in the notice issued under section 9.  In the latter case, however, a note of the value of the land, house, etc., arrived at in the report shall invariably be forwarded along with the notice.

 

39.       Opportunity to be given to the departmental officer to make representations to acquiring officer - Due consideration shall be given by the acquiring officer to any representation the department officer may make in reply to this notice, whether made in person, by agent or by written statement.  It will rest with the department concerned to decide whether there is ground for making any such representation.  The officer acquiring the land is only required to see that due opportunity  for doing so is afforded, and that the representation, if made, is duly considered before an award is made under section 11 of the act.

40.       Para 40, 40-A, 40-B, 40-C deleted.

 

F- APPROVAL OF AWARDS

 

41.     Authorities competent to approve the award - (1) Section 11 (1) of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 inter alia lays down that no award shall be made by the Collector under this sub-section without previous approval of the appropriate Government or of such officer as the appropriate Government may authorize in this behalf. For the purpose of section 11 and 15 (A) of the Land Acquisition Act, 1894, the “appropriate Government” shall mean Government in the Department concerned and “authorised officer” shall imply the Administrative Secretary concerned. The authorities to accord approval to the award have been declared by the Government as under: -

 

 

Sr. No.

Name of Authority

Class of cases for which competent to accord approval

1.

District Collector

All cases where the total amount of award is upto Rs. 50 lacs.

2.

Administrative Secretary

All cases where total amount of award exceeds Rs. 50 lacs.

          2.       In case of building structures, wells, tubewells and other installations falling under the jurisdiction of Punjab Irrigation Department, Executive Engineers of the Irrigation Department will also be competent Technical Officers.

 

42.       Deleted

 

42-A.   Acquiring department to decide whether to acquire the land or abandon acquisition  - The Acquiring Department on the receipt of the reference will have to examine whether in view of the higher cost of the land they would like to reduce the area of land to be acquired or abandon acquisition and select an alternative site.  They should send directly to the authority competent (i.e. Administrative Secretary/Collector) to approve the award their decision in this regard.  If the acquiring department decides to abandon the acquisition, necessary notification for the purpose should be issued by it and copies sent to the authority competent (i.e. Administrative Secretary/Collector) to approve the award and the Land Acquisition Collector.  Where it decides to reduce the area to be acquired, it should indicate the revised area of land to be acquired along with khasra numbers to the authority competent (i.e. Administrative Secretary/Collector) to approve the award and the Land Acquisition Collector so that the award is then announced in respect of the area proposed to be acquired.  The acquiring department may also supply to the authority competent (i.e. Administrative Secretary/Collector) to approve the award any information in their possession which it may consider relevant for the purpose of determining the compensation.

 

42-B    Deleted

 

42 C.  Land Acquisition Officer to report to Collector of the District - The Land Acquisition Collector will report every award made by him to the Collector of the district in which the land, the subject of the award, is situated. The report will show the area, kind of soil, rate per acre, and total amount in each case.

 

The Land Acquisition Collector will indicate in the award at the time of announcement that it has been made with the previous approval of the District Collector, or Financial Commissioner, Revenue, Punjab, as the case may be, in cases where the awards require such approval.

 

 

43.       Deleted.

 

43-A.   Points to be examine by the authorities approving the award -

(a)                Whether the price of land proposed to be allowed for various categories of land are reasonable;

 

(b)               Whether the compensation on account of structures, wells, tubewells, trees, etc. are in accordance with the rates recommended by the technical officers concerned or where these are proposed to be departed from the revised rates, are reasonable; and

 

(c)                Whether the change in classification of land as compared to the entries in the Jamabandi proposed by the Land Acquisition Collector are reasonable.

 

The Land Acquisition Collector and the District Collector while forwarding the draft awards for approval will therefore, indicate clearly the reasons for the proposals in regard to the above-mentioned points in the award.  Where the rates for land in the awards are based on the Collector’s rates, which were not approved by the authority approving the draft award, the basis on which Collector’s rates were approved may also be indicated.

 

44.       Collector’s powers in cases to be referred to him before awards - The Collector of the District shall have the power of requisitioning all cases to be referred to him before an award is given whether it is proposed to exceed the original estimate or not.

 

Government of India, Circular No.10, dated the 12th June, 1913 - While it is open to the State Government to cause, the proceedings of the officer framing the award under Section 11 of the Land Acquisition Act to be laid before a superior authority before the award is actually made, and while it is open to that superior authority to give the Land Acquisition Officer any information which it may have as to the proper valuation of the land, or instructions as to the information which the Land Acquisition Officer is to take into account in framing his award, the superior authority is not competent to direct the Land Acquisition Officer to award any particular amount as compensation.  Such action would virtually result in the award being made by some authority other than the officer holding the inquiry under section 11 of the Act.  But when the Land Acquisition  Officer, after considering all the information placed at his disposal, either in the course of the proceedings under section 11, or extra judicially  by Government or other authority superior to him has finally decided the amount  of the award to be made, the only alternative open to Government is :

 

(i)                  either to withdraw from the acquisition proceedings, or

(ii)                to allow them to proceed on the basis of the Land Acquisition Officer’s award.

 

45.       Rules for the payment of compensation - The rules for the payment of compensation by special officer are given in part L.

 

46.       Acquiring Officer an agent of Government and not a judicial officer. – Government of India Circular No.9-292, dated the 28th June, 1906 - In framing his award, the first essential point for an acquiring officer to remember is that he is acting as an agent of Government and not as a judicial officer.  He need not therefore, be reluctant to receive any evidence not brought before him judicially.  It has been held that the enquiry and valuation made by the Collector are departmental in their character for the purpose of enabling Government to make a tender through him to the persons interested, and that it is open to him, in making his award as to the compensation to be offered, to consider all available information on the question.

 

47.       Opportunity of withdrawal to be given to acquiring department - A second and equally important point is that in certain cases the department for which the land is being acquired be allowed an opportunity of withdrawing from the transaction. It is imperative that such opportunity should be given before possession has actually been taken, as indicated in section 48(1) of the Act, and it is to be  observed that this permits withdrawal even after the award has been announced and compensation paid provided only that possession has not passed.  Once the possession has passed, the Collector’s award becomes binding on Government.  It follows that Government’s power of withdrawal must be exercised at some previous stage of the proceedings.  Such stages would be:-

 

(1)               When the draft award is referred to the acquiring department for comments, --vide para 42 above; and

(2)               before the possession is taken and if the award of the Land Acquisition Collector appears to the acquiring department to be excessive or a reference has been made to the court under Section 18 of the Act and there is strong possibility of higher amount of compensation being allowed by the court.

 

            Consequently possession should not ordinarily be taken by the Collector until the time within which an application for a reference to the court must be made under Section 18 of the Act has elapsed without an application being made except where the acquiring department has ordered the possession to be taken forthwith.

 

            In the interest of Government departments acquiring land, the Collector is further required to inform the departmental officer of the facts, before announcing the award, if his award as finally settled after objection petitions have been heard and draft award approved by competent authority where necessary exceeds by more than 20 per cent of the preliminary estimate of the cost of acquisition prepared before the issue of notification under section 6 of the Act or if the evidence is so conflicting such as to indicate the possibility that a civil court may award a sum of similarly exceeding that estimate.  Further action for payment of compensation and taking of possession must then be postponed until the proper authority in the acquiring department has decided whether the acquisition should be proceeded with or not.

 

            A new provision has been added by the Land Acquisition (Amendment) Act, 1984 by which a land owner who has not made an application for reference of the Collector’s award to the civil court may make an application to the Collector for re-determination of amount of compensation payable to him, if the civil court allows to any other landowner whose land had been acquired under the same notification and who may have applied for such reference compensation at a higher rate, within 3 months of the judgement of the civil court.  The acquiring department will, therefore, have to consider the possibility of the price for the entire land getting increased as a result of the award of the court even if the landowners owning only a part of the land to be acquired may have filed an application for reference.

 

G – THE   AWARD

 

48.       Land acquired for a local body or company - Under Section 25 of the Act as substituted by the Land Acquisition (Amendment) Act, 1984 the amount of compensation to be awarded by the Civil Court shall not be less than the amount awarded by the Land Acquisition Collector. The provision in the Act enabling a reference to be made by the State Government against the award has thus now become infructuous. When a local body or company utilizes under Section 50 of the Act the Services of Government agency, similar considerations apply.

 

49.       Procedure of acquiring officer on hearing claims for compensation -(I)- The award must in all cases be made by the acquiring officer himself and recorded with his own hand.  On the date fixed in the notice issued under section 9 he will cause those persons who are interested in the land to be acquired to appear before him.  He will then prepare two lists, the one showing the names of persons present, the other the names of the absentees.  Unless it appears to him that there is sufficient reason for adjourning proceedings to later date, the case will be conducted exparte so far as absentees are concerned.

 

 49-(II) Matters to be considered by the acquiring officer in compensation - The statements of the persons interested shall then be recorded as to whether they accept the measurements given in the report furnished under paragraph 37 supra and agree to the rates of compensation proposed for the various qualities of land, for trees, houses, standing crops, etc., and to the apportionment thereof. If a holding or field is jointly owned or is mortgaged, the officer acquiring the land will also enquire as to the shares of the compensation to be paid to the several owners and to mortgager respectively.  These points are important and the officer should in no case fail to take them into consideration.  Where compensation is payable on account of standing crops, the amount of compensation awarded should be at the market value of the crops less the amount of land revenue and cesses payable on the land, since under paragraph 82 infra the land revenue will be reduced from the harvest during which the land has been taken up.

 

50.       Price – how to be fixed- (I)-The Collector will pay special attention to the directions given in sections 23 and 24 of the Land Acquisition Act.  The chief matter for determination is the market value of the land at the date of the publication of the notification under section 4, sub-section (1).  The officer acquiring land may consider the prices paid for the land recently  acquired under the Act in the same neighbourhood, if any, or prices paid in private transactions and recorded in registered deeds or judicial proceedings or the letting value of the Land, and the amount of the Government revenue, if any.  His main data, however, will be, of course, the original estimate framed by the Collector of the district in accordance with paragraph 12  supra.  He is not bound to follow this estimate closely but the reasons which lead him to make any important departure from it must be carefully weighed.

 

50-II.   In all cases, however, when the point arises he will do well to take into view the third head in section 23(I) of the Act.  Compensation for damage in consequence of severance is a matter of importance and difficulty.  In the case of Railways or canals with crossings at considerable distances, the compensation may often be unavoidable high.  If land upon acquisition will be severed from its source of irrigation, and the department acquiring the land does not undertake to grant irrigation facilities equal to those previously enjoyed, the difference between the market value of irrigated and non-irrigated land must be taken into consideration for estimating the value of the land so severed. The provisions of sub-section (2) of section 9 of the Act should, however, be borne in mind in cases in which exorbitant claims are made on account of severance (see also paragraph 478 of the Land Administration Manual).

 

51.       Persons who may claim compensation on the ground that his land is injuriously affected - It should be noted, however, that under the present Act no person can claim compensation unless some land has been taken in which he claims an interest, or over which he has an easement.  He cannot claim compensation on general grounds that his land is injuriously affected by the acquisition if no part of it is taken under the Act.

 

52.     Treatment of revenue assignments - (I)-In cases where the Government revenue has been alienated in favour of any one, the value of the loss of revenue to the assignee must be estimated as noticed in paragraph 489, Land Administration Manual.

 

52-(II) Reduction in Revenue to be made from rent roll - In shared villages reduction in revenue due to the acquisition of land for the State should be made from the Khalsa rent roll unless this course is impossible owing to the method of the division of the shares, or for other sufficient reasons.

 

52-(III)   Treatment when assignment is petty or where considerable - Where jagir or muafi land taken up is insignificant in amount and reduction cannot be made from the Khalsa rent roll, compensation must be awarded in cash, in accordance with the directions given below.  But when the amount of jagir or muafi on the land taken up is more than Rs.100 per annum or when such amount is more than one fifth of the total land revenue enjoyed by the assignee, and the reduction cannot be charged to the Khalsa rent roll, the State Government is willing to receive proposals through the Financial Commissioner for the grant of a pension or of a new assignment in lieu of the cash compensation otherwise payable for the assignee’s interest in the land.  Such proposals should not be made as a matter of course, but only when clearly indicated by the circumstances of the case.  When such proposals are not made the matter will be dealt with according to the rules for cash compensation.  Where jagir or muafi land is taken up for union purposes, compensation in lieu thereof must be paid in cash, in accordance with the directions given below.

 

53.       Cash Compensation how to be calculated - In cases where cash compensation is awarded the following rules shall be observed.  If the assignment is for more than one life, or in perpetuity, the compensation is to be calculated at 20 years purchase of the Government revenue assessable on the land.  If the assignment be only for life, the value is to be calculated (excluding months and days) according to the scale laid down by Government for buying out pensions by which a fixed graduated value is given with reference to ages.  The amount thus calculated is to be paid to the encumbrancer and his right is thus extinguished.  Where nazrana is paid annually by the jagirdar, this is really a deduction from the revenue of jagir.  In such a case a proportionate amount of the nazrana should be remitted and the amount of the compensation must be calculated after deducting the nazrana proportionate to the amount of the assignment extinguished.  If the assignment be for the terms of settlement; compensation must be calculated with reference to the number of years the settlement has yet to run; provided that in no case more than twenty years purchase the limit for perpetual grants be allowed.

 

54.       How the award is to be drawn up- When all statements have been recorded, the acquiring officer shall draw up his award, which will indicate the total area of the various qualities of land taken up, the rate and the amount of compensation to be paid on account of land of each quality, the total amount of compensation to be paid on account of crops, trees, houses, etc. the proportion of the compensation to be awarded to mortgagees, and decision on the objections that may have been raised by interested persons.  The extra 12 per cent per annum awarded under Section 23(1.A) and solatium at the rate of 30 per cent under section 23(2) of the Act for compulsory acquisition should not be included in the rates awarded per acre but should be added to the total compensation and shown separately.   It should be noted that Section 23(I) (A) and Section 23(2) of the Act provide for the grant of extra compensation on the market value of the land acquired and not on the total award.  Land as defined in Section 3(a) of the Act would include land, trees and buildings.  But the extra 30 per cent or the extra 12 per cent per annum is not to be added to compensation awarded in consideration of the matter specified in clauses (2) and (6) of Section 23(1).  Nor is it to be added to the capitalized value of jagir revenue granted under paragraph 52 and 53 supra.

 

55.     Statement showing compensation for each holding - Below the general award he shall have drawn up a statement showing the compensation awarded on account of each holding.  This will be in the form given in illustration below: -

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

SN

Jama-bandi and khatauni Nos

Names of owners, tenants etc. with shares

Khasra Nos. out of which land has been taken up

Area in acres of land taken up

Quality of land

 

2/7

Khuda Bakhash, son of Gulam Muhammad, and Izimo, son of Piru, equal share owners Partap Singh 2/5 and Harnam Singh 3/5 occupancy tenants Section 5.

 

--Hussaina, son of Sadiq

        17

        25

        min.

 

       1092

 10.5

2 acres sotar barani

7 acres nahri