WHETHER MUNICIPALITY CAN ALLOT ITS PROPERTY WITHOUT MAKING AUCTION OR TENDER
NO SAYS SUPREME COURT GUIDELINES
In Akhil Bhartiya Upbhokta Congress v. State of Madhya Pradesh(2011) 5 SCC 29, this Court was called upon to examine whether the Government of Madhya Pradesh could have allotted 20 acres land to Shri Kushabhau Thakre Memorial Trust under the M. P. Nagar Tatha Gram Nivesh Adhiniyam, 1973 read with M. P. Nagar Tatha Gram Nivesh Vikasit Bhoomiyo, Griho, Bhavano Tatha Anya Sanrachanao K Vyayan Niyam, 1975. After noticing the provision of the Act and the Rules, as also those contained in M.P. Revenue Book Circular and the judgments of this Court in S. G. Jaisinghani v. Union of India AIR 1967 SC 1427, Ramana Dayaram Shetty v. International Airport Authority of India (1979) 3 SCC 489, Erusian Equipment and Chemicals Ltd. v. State of W.B. (1975) 1 SCC 70, Kasturi Lal Lakshmi Reddy v. State of J&K (1980) 4 SCC 1, Common Cause v. Union of India (1996) 6 SCC 530, Shrilekha Vidyarthi v. State of U. P.(1991) 1 SCC 212, LIC v. Consumer Education & Research Centre (1995) 5 SCC 482, New India Public School v. HUDA (1996) 5 SCC 510, the Court culled out the following propositions:
"What needs to be emphasised is that the State and/or its agencies/instrumentalities cannot give largesse to any person according to the sweet will and whims of the political entities and/or officers of the State. Every action/decision of the State and/or its agencies/instrumentalities to give largesse or confer benefit must be founded on a sound, transparent, discernible and well-defined policy, which shall be made known to the public by publication in the Official Gazette and other recognised modes of publicity and such policy must be implemented/executed by adopting a non-discriminatory and non- arbitrary method irrespective of the class or category of persons proposed to be benefited by the policy. The distribution of largesse like allotment of land, grant of quota, permit licence, etc. by the State and its agencies/instrumentalities should always be done in a fair and equitable manner and the element of favouritism or nepotism shall not influence the exercise of discretion, if any, conferred upon the particular functionary or officer of the State. We may add that there cannot be any policy, much less, a rational policy of allotting land on the basis of applications made by individuals, bodies, organisations or institutions dehors an invitation or advertisement by the State or its agency/instrumentality. By entertaining applications made by individuals, organisations or institutions for allotment of land or for grant of any other type of largesse the State cannot exclude other eligible persons from lodging competing claim. Any allotment of land or grant of other form of largesse by the State or its agencies/instrumentalities by treating the exercise as a private venture is liable to be treated as arbitrary, discriminatory and an act of favouritism and/or nepotism violating the soul of the equality clause embodied in Article 14 of the Constitution."