Tata moves Supreme Court on Singur land

June 28th, 2011 - 10:26 pm ICT by IANS  

Mamata Banerjee New Delhi, June 28 (IANS) Tata Motors Tuesday moved the Supreme Court against the “undue haste” being shown by the West Bengal government in returning the land acquired for its now-abandoned small car factory in Singur to local farmers.

The move came after the Calcutta High Court refused the company’s plea to restrain the West Bengal government from the land distribution.

Taking note of the petition filed by Tata, a vacation bench comprising Justices P. Sathasivam and A.K Patnaik posted the matter for hearing Wednesday.

In his plea, the counsel for Tata stated that the company is seeking a direction for the state government not to create a third party interest in the land.

“Direct the government to hand over possession of land to Tata pending adjudication of the matter,” says the petition.

The petition also states that the act is a “colourable exercise of legislation in violation of the provisions of the constitution”.

The Calcutta High Court Monday rejected the company’s plea to restrain the state government from returning land in Hooghly’s Singur to farmers from whom it was taken by the Left Front regime for the company’s plant.

Calcutta High Court gave its order, after the company had filed a fresh petition, seeking an ex-parte (in the absence of the other party) interim relief.

After this prayer was rejected by a single judge bench, the company approached before the double bench seeking to move an ex-parte appeal as well as oral submission, but neither of the pleas was accepted.

The court had also refused to pass an interim stay order observing that the Tata Motors Limited petition had no specific statement as to when the process of land distribution would start.

It further noted the petitioner had submitted that if the prayer was not allowed and the land distributed, the original petition challenging the Singur Land Rehabilitation and Development Act, 2011 would become infructuous.

The Singur Land Rehabilitation and Development Act, which came into force June 21, provides for scrapping the land lease to the company by the erstwhile Left Front government for the now-abandoned small car plant.

The company challenged the act that vested the land in the government, which evicted the automobile giant from the plant.

The state assembly June 14 passed the bill that was designed to meet the ruling Trinamool Congress’s pre-assembly poll promise of returning 400 acres land to the farmers from whom the Left Front government allegedly took it against their will.

The Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress had spearheaded an agitation between 2006 and 2008 demanding the return of 400 acres land to farmers who were forced to give up land for the car project. The Trinamool won the assembly election held in April-May.

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