Punjab and Haryana High Court: Showcasing the spirit of judicial review the Court in a significant decision cancelled the allotment of 350 acres of land to realty bigwig DLF by the Government of Haryana and ordered de-novo process of re- allotment of the land in question for the professed public purpose.

Briefly stating the facts, the PIL revolved around the acquisition of a Gram Panchayat land by the HSIIDC and later allotted to DLF for the purported public purpose of development of recreational and leisure project including a golf course. The petitioner represented by Sudhanshu Makkar termed the acquisition and the allotment as colorable exercise of power and argued that the acquisition by HSIIDC was being done at the behest of DLF to provide the company benefits thus amounting to fraud on public. The State of Haryana represented by H.S. Hooda, Advocate General refuted the arguments.

The Court on examining the facts and arguments declined to reject the petitions for the want of locus standi and observed that the Court cannot wholly ignore the presence of DLF in the State which puts it in the position to exercise a certain degree of influence and as it was proved that the land in question originally belonged to the sister companies of DLF which then later came to be owned by the Panchayat then acquired by the HSIIDC before making the disputed allotment therefore casts a shadow of doubt on the bona fides of the allotment. The Court further observed that the chain of events appearing from the facts are far from being co incidences therefore have impaired the element of public interest.

Om Prakash Mukdam v. State of Haryana, CWP No.2367 of 2012, decided on 03.09.2014  

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