Land Acquisition for 'Public Purpose' – A Critical Analysis

51 Pages Posted: 15 Mar 2021

Date Written: july 25, 2018


The definition of ‘public purpose’ is inclusive and not precisely defined in the Act or the constitution of India, which makes it possible for the government to stretch the public purpose definition to its limit and even including acquisition of land for non-profit making private companies. Based on the analysis of the present research work it can be held that the judiciary play's important role in defining the public purpose and keeping a regular check on the misuse of power vested with the state government to acquire land for the public purpose. The judiciary has played a crucial role in evolving new principles with regard to acquisition of land and provided justice to the people.

In spite of judicial interventions and directions, the power of land acquisition in the name of public purpose has been grossly misused by the states. Even the new Act (Right to Fair compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013) has also failed to be a good replacement of the old Land Acquisition Act, 1894 to address the misuse. The role and power of the government as the sole authority in deciding public purpose should be reduced and role of the judiciary to protect the interest of the person whose land is acquired should be increased.

Keywords: Land Acquisition, Public purpose, Eminent Domain, Land bill

JEL Classification: K10, K11, R14

Suggested Citation

anjana, Lalit, Land Acquisition for 'Public Purpose' – A Critical Analysis (july 25, 2018). Available at SSRN: or

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