Civil Misc. Writ Petition No. 17558 of 2014. Case: Virendra Vs State of U.P.. High Court of Allahabad (India)

Case NumberCivil Misc. Writ Petition No. 17558 of 2014
JudgesTarun Agarwala and Narayan Shukla, JJ.
IssueAtomic Energy Act, 1962 - Section 5; Coal Bearing Areas (Acquisition and Development) Act, 1957 - Sections 15, 3(e), 4, 7
Judgement DateDecember 15, 2014
CourtHigh Court of Allahabad (India)


Tarun Agarwala, J.

  1. The petitioner is a bhumidhar of a land situate at Gata No. 593/36 in Village Khaira Khas, Pargana Sikandarpur Garvi, Tehsil Belthara Road, District Ballia.

  2. In paragraph 13 of the writ petition, it is contended that on the land of the petitioner a lot of sand gets accumulated during the rainy season and that it becomes difficult for the petitioner to till the land after the rainy season. The petitioner contends that he is the absolute owner of the sand, which gets collected on his land and that he has the sole proprietary right on it and, consequently, a writ of mandamus should be issued to the respondents, especially to the District Magistrate to permit the petitioner to excavate the sand from his land, for which the respondents are directed to issue Form MM-11. It was further prayed that the petitioner is ready and willing to pay the royalty as per the Schedule 1 of the U.P. Minor Minerals (Concession) Rule, 1963 (hereinafter referred to as the Rules of 1963).

  3. We have heard at length Sri Dev Brat Mukherjee, the learned counsel for the petitioner and Sri Vishnu Pratap Singh and Sri Alok Kumar Singh, the learned Standing Counsels for the State.

  4. The learned counsel for the petitioner contended that Mines and Minerals Regulation and Development Act, 1957 (hereinafter referred to as the Act of 1957) and the Rules framed therein, namely, The Uttar Pradesh Minor Minerals (Concession) Rules, 1963 only provides for regulation of mining activity in the country and that the aforesaid legislation does not legislate that the minor minerals found in the sub-soil vests with the Central Government or the State Government. It was contended that the Act of 1957 or the Rules of 1963 does not declare proprietary rights of the minerals with the State nor does it contain any provision divesting the owner of minor minerals of his proprietary right.

  5. In support of his contention, the learned counsel for the petitioner contended that with regard to specific minerals the Parliament has made laws divesting proprietary rights of such minerals upon the owner of the land where such minerals were found. In this regard, the petitioner submitted that under the Mines (Nationalization) Act, 1972 and Coal Bearing Areas (Acquisition and Development) Act, 1957 an express declaration under Section 4 and 7 of the said Act has been made providing for acquisition of mines and rights in or over the land from where coal was obtained and that the proprietary rights in mines stood transferred and vested in the State. It was contended that under the Atomic Energy Act, 1962, Section 5 prohibits mining activity of uranium. Similar provisions of prohibiting excavation of oil has been passed by the Central Government under the Oil Fields (Regulation and Development) Act, 1948.

  6. Arguments were made on the question that only the Central Government under Entry 54 of the Union list under the Constitution of India had the power to make laws for regulation of mines and minerals development and that the State Government had no such power to make laws under Entry 23 of the State list. In this regard, the learned counsel submitted that the Supreme Court in Mineral Area Development Authority and others Vs. Steel Authority of India and others, 2011 (4) SCC 450 has referred the matter to a Bench of 9 Judges and that the matter is pending consideration. On this issue, the learned...

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