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SilverLine: How can state issue order to acquire land when survey is on, asks Kerala HC

“Obviously, therefore, the senior government pleader must explain how this was done even when the survey as per the Survey and Boundaries Act was under way,” the court said.

Published: 07th January 2022 06:24 AM  |   Last Updated: 07th January 2022 06:24 AM   |  A+A-

Kerala High Court

Kerala High Court. (File Photo| A Sanesh, EPS)

By Express News Service

KOCHI: The Kerala High Court on Thursday directed the state government to explain how orders were issued to acquire 1,221 hectares of land in various villages across the state for the SilverLine project even as the survey as per the Survey and Boundaries Act was under way.

Justice Devan Ramachandran issued the order on a petition filed by Binu Sebastian and four others from Ettumanoor, Kottayam, seeking a directive to the state government not to proceed with any survey for demarcating boundaries and fixation of alignments for any railway project in petitioners’ properties.

When the petition came up for hearing, the court noted that one aspect of concern was that in the government orders, the extent of land required to be acquired was mentioned, along with the details of the block number, survey number and villages. “Obviously, therefore, the senior government pleader must explain how this was done even when the survey as per the Survey and Boundaries Act was under way,” the court said.

The petitioners said officials under the special tahsildar, land acquisition, Kottayam, had entered their properties and took steps to demarcate the boundaries. They contended that as per Section 11 of the Railways Act, only the Centre government and its instrumentalities were authorised to issue the notification for the land acquisition, survey, measurement, valuation, enquiry, for any railway project.

However, the state government had issued the notifications disregarding the provisions of law. The petitioners sought to quash the operation of the government orders and all further proceedings for land acquisition for the project.

The petitioners also sought a directive to the state government and the Kerala Rail Development Corporation not to proceed with any survey, for demarcation of boundaries, fixation of alignments for any railway project until appropriate notifications are issued as contemplated in the Railways Act 1989. The court adjourned the case to January 12.



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