Pre-emption Under SAT Act 1950:
The word ‘pre-emption’ was derived from Latin ‘prae’ means before and ‘empto’ or ‘emption’, which means ‘buying’. Generally Pre-emption means a right of opportunity of purchasing land in priority to other people, which is ensured by Law. Section 96 of the State Acquisition and Tenancy Act, 1950 (SAT Act) states the provision regarding the Right of Provision. In this article we will discuss Pre-emption only under the SAT Act, 1950.
Who Can Apply & Period of Limitation:
(1) If a portion or share of a holding of a raiyat is sold to a person who is not a co-sharer tenant in the holding, one or more co-sharer tenants of the holding may, within two months of the service of the notice given under section 89, or, if no notice has been served under section 89, within two months of the date of the knowledge of the sale, apply to the Court for the said portion or share to be sold to himself or themselves:
Provided that no application under this section shall lie unless the applicant is-
(a) a co-sharer tenant in the holding by inheritance; and
(b) a person to whom sale of the holding or the portion or share thereof, as the case may be, can be made under section 90:
Provided further that no application under this section shall lie after expiry of three years from the date of registration of the sale deed.
(2) In an application under sub-section (1), all other co-sharer tenants by inheritance of the holding and the purchaser shall be made parties.
(3) An application under sub-section (1) shall be dismissed unless the applicant or applicants, at the time of making it, deposit in the Court-
(a) the amount of the consideration money of the sold holding or portion or share of the holding as stated in the notice under section 89 or in the deed of sale, as the case may be;
(b) compensation at the rate of twenty five per centum of the amount referred to in clause (a); and
(c) an amount calculated at the rate of eight per centum simple annual interest upon the amount referred to in clause (a) for the period from the date of the execution of the deed of sale to the date of filing of the application for preemption.
Notice to the Purchaser:
(4) On receipt of such application accompanied by such deposits, the Court shall give notice to the purchaser and to the other persons made parties thereto under sub-section (2) to appear within such period as it may fix and shall require the purchaser to state what other sums he has paid in respect of rent since the date of sale and what expenses he has incurred in annulling encumbrances on, or for making any improvement in respect of the holding, portion or share sold.
(5) The Court shall, after giving all the parties an opportunity of being heard after holding an enquiry as to rent paid and the expenses incurred by the purchaser as referred to in sub-section (4), direct the applicant or applicants to deposit a further sum, if necessary, within such period as the Court thinks reasonable.
Joint of a new Co-sharer:
(6) When an application has been made under sub-section (1), any of the remaining co-sharer tenants may, within the period referred to in sub-section (1) or within two months of the date of the service of the notice of the application under sub-section (4), whichever be earlier, apply to join in the said application; any co-sharer tenant who has not applied either under sub-section (1) or under this sub-section, shall not have any further right to purchase under this section.
Determination of Application:
(7) On the expiry of the period within which an application may be made under sub-section (6), the Court shall determine, in accordance with the provisions of this section, which of the applications filed under sub-section (6) shall be allowed.
Apportioning the Amount payable by the new co-sharer:
(8) If the Court finds that an order allowing the applications made under sub-section (7) is to be made in favour of more than one applicant, the Court shall determine the amount to be paid by each of such applicants and, after apportioning the amount, shall order the applicant or applicants who have joined in the original application under sub-section (6) to deposit in the Court the amounts payable by him or them within such period as it thinks reasonable; and if the deposit is not made by any such applicant within such period, his application shall be dismissed.
Order by the Court:
(9) On the expiry of the period within which a deposit, if any, is to be made under sub-section (8), the Court shall pass orders-
(a) allowing the application or applications made by the applicant or applicants who are entitled to purchase under, and have complied with the provisions of, this section;
(b) apportioning the holding or the portion or share of the holding among them in such manner as it deems equitable when such orders are passed in favour of more than one applicant under sub-section (8);
(c) refunding money to any one if entitled to such refund of any money from the amount deposited by the applicant or applicants under sub-sections (3) and (5);
(d) directing that the purchaser be paid out of the deposits made under sub-sections (3) and (5);
(e) directing the purchaser to execute and register deed or deeds of sale within sixty days in favour of the person or persons whose application or applications have been allowed; and no tax, duty or fee shall be payable for such registration.
Registry by the Court:
(10) If the purchaser fails to execute and register deed or deeds of sale in pursuance of the directions under clause (e) of sub-section (9), within sixty days in favour of the person or persons whose application or applications have been allowed, the court shall execute and present deed or deeds of sale for registration within sixty days thereafter in favour of such person or persons whose application or applications have been allowed.
The Right, Title & Interest:
(11) From the date of the registration of sale deed or deeds under clause (e) of sub-section (9) or under sub-section (10), the right, title and interest in the holding or portion or share thereof accruing to the purchaser from the sale shall, subject to any orders passed under sub-section (9), be deemed to have vested, free from all encumbrances which have been created after the date of sale, in the co-sharer tenant or tenants whose application or applications to purchase have been allowed under sub-section (9).
(12) The Court on further application of such applicant or applicants may place him or them, as the case may be, in possession of the property vested in him or them.
(13) No apportionment ordered under clause (b) of sub-section (9) shall operate as division of the holding.
(14) An application under this section shall be made to the Court which would have jurisdiction to entertain a suit for the possession of the land in connection with which the application is brought.
(15) An Appeal shall lie to the ordinary Civil Appellate Court from any order of the Court under this section.
(16) Nothing in this section shall be deemed to apply to homestead land.
Pre-emption under Mohammadan Law:
(17) Nothing in this section shall take away the right of pre-emption conferred on any person by the Mohammadan Law.
(18) Nothing in this section shall apply to any transfer of any portion or share of a holding of a raiyat or any application under section 96 of this Act, made prior to coming into force of the State Acquisition and Tenancy (Amendment) Act, 2006.]