Land Acquired Under National Highways Act Cannot Be Restored To Owner Due To Non-Utilisation: Allahabad HC [Read Order]

Land Acquired Under National Highways Act Cannot Be Restored To Owner Due To Non-Utilisation: Allahabad HC [Read Order]

The Allahabad High Court has ruled that land acquired under the National Highways Act, 1956 cannot be restored to its former owners despite its non-utilisation.

The order was passed by a bench comprising Justice Amreshwar Pratap Sahi and Justice Bachchoo Lal.

The court was hearing a petition filed by one Santosh Devi, who had submitted that land had been acquired from her for the purpose of laying an expressway. She had, however, pointed out that due to alteration in alignment, the land was not being utilised anymore. She had, therefore, sought restoration of the acquired land on this ground.

The court, however, noted the lack of a provision for restoring land on the ground of non-utilisation, observing, “The land has been acquired under the National Highway Act 1956. The said Act does not make any provision for restoration of the land in the event it has not been utilized by the acquiring body.”

It further noted that the petitioner had not submitted any such incident wherein anyone similarly situated had been extended the benefit of restoration.

The court, therefore, rejected the petition, opining, “In the aforesaid circumstances, in the absence of any such legal provision available, the respondents are under no obligation to restore the land for which a mandamus cannot be issued.”

Read the Order Here