Sunday, February 5, 2023

Bombay High Court dismisses PIL against illegal land grabbing in Navi Mumbai

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The Bombay High Court has dismissed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed against the illegal grabbing of plots of land, which had been earlier acquired by the City and Industrial Development Corporation for implementation of a scheme for development of Navi Mumbai, by private respondent on the basis of fabricated documents.

The petitioner has approached the High Court seeking inter alia the following relief: –

“(b) This Hon’ble Court be pleased to issue a Writ ofMandamus or any other appropriate writ, order or direction directing the Respondents to register an FirstInformation Report against the said offenders in the above matter.”

The Division Bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice Madhav J. Jamdar has observed that law is well settled by the Supreme Court in the decisions in All India Institute of Medical Sciences vs.Union of India, reported in (1996) 11 SCC 582, GangadharJanardan Mhatre vs. State of Maharashtra, reported in(2004) 7 SCC 768, Minu Kumari vs. State of Bihar,reported in (2006) 4 SCC 359, Hari Singh vs. State of U.P.,reported in (2006) 5 SCC 733, and Sakiri Vasu vs. State Of U.P. reported in (2008) 2 SCC 409, that when the Code ofCriminal Procedure provides remedies if a complaint disclosing cognizable offence is not registered as First InformationReport, the Court ordinarily ought not to entertain a petition and may relegate the complaining party to explore remedies in terms of the Code.

“This is not an extreme case where there is a threat to life of any person or that some person has been bodily injury, yet, upon disclosure of information in relation to a cognizable offence having been committed, the police has not taken any action,” held the High Court.

Even otherwise, merely because a public interest litigation has been instituted would not be sufficient to persuade us exercise our extraordinary writ jurisdiction when other remedies are available, said the Court.

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