Supreme Court says Tamil Nadu is free to bring law against land grab, but overrules two Govts. notifications

The top court agreed with the high court that the notifications were vague.

The Supreme Court on Thursday said that the Tamil Nadu government is free to bring a law against land grab if it feels the need to act against goons forcibly occupying land.

A division bench led by Justice MR Shah made the observation in a judgment that quashed two state government notifications of 2011, setting up 36 land-grabbing special cells in Tamil Nadu and transferring land-grabbing cases to special courts. was approved to do so.

Justice Shah, however, upheld a 2015 Madras High Court judgment that the two notifications did not clearly define the terms ‘land grabber’ and ‘land grabbers’, leaving the police open to abusing their authority. get a chance.

The top court agreed with the high court that the notification was vague and did not contain any norms or guidelines against misuse of police power against innocent citizens. Special cell policemen can pick up anyone and register a case of land grab.

The court compared the notifications to the Andhra Pradesh Land Acquisition (Prohibition) Act, 1982, which is a specific and clearly formulated law.

“The government notification gives unbridled, unguided and arbitrary powers to the police to treat any land case as a land grab case, which will be probed by the special land grab cell. Even a dispute between two private persons, which may be under the Specific Relief Act and/or the Transfer of Property Act, can be considered a case of land grab,” Justice Shah said.

Advocate General of Tamil Nadu R. Shanmugasundaram had argued that the misuse or likelihood of misuse of a provision by the authority cannot be a ground for holding a law arbitrary. The notifications were meant to address complaints of large scale land grabs in Tamil Nadu.

Addressing the state’s concerns, Justice Shah said the court’s decision would not stand in the way of Tamil Nadu bringing in a suitable law against land grab, provided it clearly defines “land grabber” and “land grabber” and ” Define words like “land grab case”. ,