A plan conceived by the Director of Town and Country Planning in 1991 to lay a 100-foot road near the bypass road here under the Ponmeni Part-III Development Extension Scheme has run into rough weather due to non-acquisition of land for the last 18 years.

Allowing a writ petition filed in the Madras High Court Bench, Justice R.S. Ramanathan quashed an order passed by the Municipal Corporation Commissioner and permitted a couple to construct a private hospital on 19,120 sq.ft. of land, which was originally part of the proposed 100-foot road.

Not justified

The judge said that the Commissioner was not justified in refusing to grant building approval for the hospital citing the 1991 plan. He said that a land should have been released from proposed acquisition process if it had not been acquired within three years of the notification issued in the district gazette.

He rejected the Special Government Pleader’s contention that the acquisition could not be carried out in view of the huge cost involved. The pleader said that it was planned to ask the land-owners to give away a portion of their properties to the government through gift deeds as and when they approached the officials for approval of their lands.

On the other hand, petitioner’s counsel M. Ajmal Khan argued that the officials cannot continuously create an encumbrance on a property and that they were bound to release the property from the acquisition process if it had not materialised within three years as per Section 38 of the Town and Country Planning Act, 1971.

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