Justice Lokur had questioned that,“How can a three Judge Bench declare Judgement of another bench of equal strength as ‘per-incurium’”.
Chief Justice Dipak Misra has constituted a Five Judge Bench headed by him and Justice AK Sikri, Justice AM Khanwilkar, Justice DY Chandrachud and Justice Ashok Bhushan to put an end to the crisis situation prevalent in the Apex Court with respect to the conflicting Judgments of Three Judge Benches of SC regarding interpretation of Section 24, Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in the Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013.
The Five Judge Bench will hear the matter on March 6,2018.
On February 8, 2018, the 3 Judge Bench comprising Justice Arun Mishra, Justice AK Goel and Justice Mohan M Shantangoudar by a 2:1 majority had declared that the Pune Municipal Corporation & Anr. v. Harakchand Misirimal Solanki, was per incuriam. This judgment was rendered by a Bench headed by the then CJI Lahoti, Justice Kurian Joseph and Justice Lokur.
Justice Mishra, who wrote the judgment on behalf of the Bench noted the submission on behalf of the landowners that since decision of the Pune Municipal Corporation is of Three Judges Bench then propriety requires that the case should be referred to the Larger Bench, but the same issue does not seem sufficiently addressed.
Thereafter, on February 21, another three judge bench of the Supreme Court headed by Justice Madan B. Lokur, requested the other SC benches and High Courts to not to deal with any cases relating to interpretation of or concerning Section 24 of Land Acquisition Acts.
On February 22, 2018 Justice Arun Mishra who had headed the 3 judge bench that held the decision in ‘Pune Municipality case’ as per incuriam, taking note of the order Justice Madan B. Lokur’s bench, which virtually stayed the order, has referred the issue to the Chief Justice of India to constitute a larger bench to decide the issue.
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