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Home > Know Your Rights > Right to Property
FAQ's | Landmark Judgements | Legal Frameworks


Q1.  What is meant by Right to Property?

A1.  Right to property is a legal right given to all citizens of India by the Constitution of India. It means that no person can be deprived of his personal property except by law. It gives every citizen of India the right to buy and own property without any restrictions.  This right was earlier a fundamental right but in 1977, it was received from the list of fundamental right, but it still is a legal right.


Q2.  What sorts of properties are covered under this right?

A2.  Property includes both movable and immovable properties under this right. It includes money, Contract, interest in property e.g., interest of an allottee, licensees, mortgages or lessees of property. The Mahantship of a Hindu Temple, and shareholders of Interests in the company are recognizable interest in property. The right to receive pension as property is also covered under this right.


Q3.  Why was right to property removed from the list of Fundamental Rights?

A3.  Right to property was removed from the list of fundamental rights because if it would have been a fundamental right then it would have been very difficult for government to acquire any person’s property for welfare works as every citizen would have approached the court for violation of his fundamental right. By doing so, the power of the state to acquire property for public good was recognized and also it gave individuals the right to get compensation from the state in case their property is acquired.


Q4.  Why does government need to acquire anybody’s property when government has so much land?

A4.  Government needs to acquire individual property when such properties are coming in the way of welfare projects. For example, if on scientific research it is found that a particular piece of land belonging to a person has oil beneath it, then government will want to acquire that property. The oil that is found will help millions of Indians. Here public welfare is kept above the property right of a single person. So, the property will be acquired by providing adequate compensation to the owner.


Q5.  If the government acquires my property without any just reason then what should I do?

A5.  Before acquiring anybody’s land, government has to provide adequate reasons that justify such acquisition. However, if you feel that your property was unjustly acquired, then you can always approach the court and ask for restoration of your property back to you.


Q6.  What are the salient features of the right to property?

A6.  Following are some of the features of the right to property:

·  Every citizen has a fundamental right to acquire, hold and dispose the property.

·  The state can make a law imposing reasonable restrictions on the said right in public interest.

·  Whether a restriction imposed by law on a fundamental right is reasonable and in public interest or not, is a justiciable issue.

·  The state can by law, deprive a person of his property if the said law of deprivation amounts to reasonable restriction in public interest. The state can acquire or request the property of a person for a public purpose after paying compensation.

·  If the compensation fixed by law is illusory or is contrary to the principles relevant to the fixation of compensation, it would be a fraud on power and therefore the validity of such a law becomes justiciable.

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