Order of the Punjab-Haryana High Court regarding exchange of Shamlat land, village Drari, district Sahibzada Ajit Singh Nagar, Punjab, 02/02/2021

  • 02/02/2021

Order of the Punjab-Haryana High Court in the matter of Baljit Singh Vs State of Punjab & Others dated 02/02/2021.

The petitioner, Baljit Singh is the inhabitant of village Drari, tehsil and district S.A.S. Nagar, Mohali had filed the application against the order of June 9, 2020 passed by the Punjab government - whereby approval has been accorded for the exchange of Shamlat land of village Drari (admeasuring 42 kanals 8 marlas) with the land belonging to a private developer (admeasuring 42 kanals 8 marlas). The applicant said that the Shamlat land belonging to Gram Panchayat of village Drari was of very high commercial value as it was abutting the 200 feet wide PR-9 road going towards the Mohali International Airport, whereas the land belonging to private developer was away from the said road and low lying and prone to flooding and was less valuable.

The petitioner had also sought direction of quashing the resolution of July 23, 2019 and December 4, 2019 passed by the Gram Panchayat of village Drari regarding exchange of Shamlat land with the land of the private developer. As per the petitioner, the said action of the Gram Panchayat was totally illegal being in violation of Rule 5 of Punjab Village Common Lands (Regulation) Rules 1964.

The Punjab-Haryana High Court directed that the resolutions passed by the Gram Panchayat as well as the decision of the Punjab government - according approval to the exchange of land was detrimental to the interest of the inhabitants of the village Drari. The Gram Panchayat land is abutting 200 feet wide PR-9 road which approaches the Mohali International Airport and is highly valuable being useful for industrial as well as commercial purpose, as compared to the land which the Gram Panchayat would get in its exchange from the private developer. Viewed from any angle, the exchange of the land of the Gram Panchayat cannot be justified, it being only for the benefit of the private developers and thus it cannot be sustained, the High Court order of February 2, 2021 said.