CHENNAI: The sale of a prime property belonging to a 125-year old trust in Kumbakonam has come under judicial scrutiny, with the Madras high court issuing notice to the Thanjavur district administration and others on Monday.
A division bench comprising Justice Satish K Agnihotri and Justice K K Sasidharan issued notices on Monday, when the PIL filed by A Elangovan of Anaikarai in the district came up for further hearing.
The matter pertains to 5.06 acres of land belonging to the Aranmanai Raman Chettiyar Annadhana Trust in Kumbakonam town. The property was vested with the trust by philanthropist Raman Chettiyar in 1887, and its present value is said to be about Rs 100 crore.
According advocate S Tamilarasan, counsel for the PIL-petitioner, the trust sold the land byauction in 2003 after obtaining an order to that effect from the local sub-court. The market value of the land notwithstanding, it was auctioned off for Rs 1.81 crore in April 2003 to one S Ravichandran. The successful bidder took six months to deposit Rs 25 lakh and another five years for depositing the remaining Rs 1.56 crore.
Alleging violation of mandatory rules in the sale, Tamilarasan said" "As per Civil Procedure Code (CPC) on every sale of immovable property, the person declared to be the purchaser shall immediately pay a deposit of 25% of the amount of his purchase. In default of such deposit, the property shall forthwith be resold. Full purchase money should be paid within 15 days from the sale."
The high court, however, confirmed the sale and asked the buyer to pay interest for the five-year period instead of ordering forfeiture of the amount paid that far, he said.
The PIL now wanted the court to set aside the sale.