The acquisition of land proceedings will not lapse unless the compensation has not been paid and the physical possession has also not been taken.

In the case of Land Acquisition Collector and Anr. vs. B.S. Dhillon & Ors., the Supreme Court of India declared that the acquisition of the land in question did not lapse under Section 24(2) of the Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013.

The High Court had previously declared the acquisition to have lapsed based on a 2014 decision that was subsequently overruled by the Supreme Court in a 2020 Constitution Bench decision. The Court ruled that compensation must be determined under the provisions of the 2013 Act in cases where the award is not made as of January 1, 2014, but that proceedings continue where an award has been passed within five years of that date.

The word “or” used in Section 24(2) between possession and compensation must be read as “nor” or “and,” and the deemed lapse of land acquisition proceedings under Section 24(2) of the 2013 Act only applies where, due to the inaction of authorities for five years or more before the commencement of the Act, neither compensation has been paid nor possession of land has been taken.

Land Acquisition Collector and Anr. …Appellant(s)
B.S. Dhillon & Ors. …Respondent(s)


Sanjiv Narang Adv. is an Advocate on Record in the Supreme Court of India. His qualifications include an LLB from University of Delhi and a Masters degree in Personnel Management from Panjab University,Chandigarh.In his more than 3 decades of experience, he has practiced law at the District, High Court and Supreme Court levels.He also has more than a decade of experience in the field of Management. He is the author of two books namely Laws for Women in India and Innovation, Why What and How.