Landowners move High Court against stay on attachment of government property


Landowners move High Court against stay on attachment of government property BANGALORE: Several landowners of Bantwal taluk on Wednesday petitioned the Karnataka High Court against its order staying a lower court direction attaching the property of the State Government for its failure to pay compensation for the land it had acquired for the construction of a bridge across the Netravathi in Mangalore district. The petitioners, who said they have lost their lands after it was acquired by the State Government, said the Land Acquisition Officer (LAO) had passed an award after their lands were acquired for the construction of a bridge across Netravathi. Dissatisfied by the award, the petitioners had filed an application for reference before the District Court. The court had allowed the reference and enhanced the compensation to the land owners by 22,800 per cent (on the award passed by the LAO). The State Government then filed a petition in the High Court challenging the enhancement. These petitions were dismissed as withdrawn when the Government issued an order to withdraw the case. Subsequently, there were several representations from residents of Bantwal taluk to the Government pointing out to the fraud played on it by some land owners when their lands were acquired. The Government then ordered an inquiry. When investigations pointed to fraud, it filed civil petitions in the High Court which were rejected. It then went in appeal in the Supreme Court by filing a special leave petition. Meanwhile, some of the landowners (claimants to the compensation) filed an execution suit before a Mangalore court seeking attachment of the property of the State Government for its failure to pay the compensation. The Mangalore court allowed the application and directed attachment of the Government property. The Government approached the High Court, apprehending that some of its officers could be arrested for not paying the compensation and also that its properties could be attached. The High Court had stayed the Mangalore court order on attachment of State properties. Justice B.S. Patil adjourned further hearing on the case.

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