The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted eight weeks time to the Karnataka Government to convene the meeting of the high-level committee (HLC), headed by Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa, to look into the disputes on allotment of land to the Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprises (NICE), which is executing the Bangalore-Mysore Infrastructure Corridor Project.

A three-judge Bench of Justice V.S. Sirpurkar, Justice Mukundakam Sharma and Justice R.M. Lodha passed the order after the Advocate-General Ashok Haranahalli submitted that the HLC meeting could not be convened within 10 weeks as per the January 11 order in view of the municipal elections. He said the present government was extending full cooperation to the company and the project was going on, and one section of the road had been completed.

Senior counsel Dushyant Dave, appearing for NICE, submitted that no progress had been made since the last order and said the government was trying to denotify the lands already allotted to the NICE. The Advocate-General, however, gave an undertaking that till the next date of hearing, the government would not denotify any lands.

The Bench, while recording the Advocate-General's undertaking, said that as a last opportunity it was granting eight weeks time to the government for convening the HLC meeting and for filing the report.

Application by NICE

The Bench, while asking the State to respond to an application filed by NICE, asked the HLC to look into it and give a report in eight weeks.

In its application, NICE had said that compensation had been paid by the company for 776 acres of land but the land was yet to be handed over. The court in January had asked the HLC to look into this aspect.

The State in its application said that the HLC meeting could not be held due to the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike polls and on account of the budget session of the State legislature. It said response to the NICE application could be filed only after the HLC meeting and therefore it was necessary that eight weeks time be granted for convening the meeting and for filing the response.

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