Soon after the decision, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee claimed it as a landmark victory. "This is a landmark victory after we thought of the new name for state of West Bengal. I am very happy with the decision,” she said.

"I am remembering those people who made sacrifices fighting for this," Banerjee added. "We will call for a strategy meeting tomorrow at 4 pm. I would expect everyone to celebrate this as Singur utsav. It’s like an invocation of the celebration to Durga Puja," she said.

Notably, the land acquisition deal was opposed by the Trinamool Congress. Finally, the project was shifted to Sanad in Gujarat. The top court bench of Justice V Gopal Gowda and Justice Arun Mishra said that all those farmers who have taken the compensation in lieu of the acquisition need not return it as they have been deprived of their lands and its fruits for last 10 years.

The court also said those farmers who had not taken the compensation may withdraw it and that land be returned to the owners within 12 weeks. While agreeing on the quashing of the acquisition, allowing farmers to retain the amount of compensation and directing that the land be returned in 12 weeks, both Justice Gowda and Justice Mishra gave different reasons.

"I'm of the view that an acquisition of land in favour of a company cannot be fulfilled as a public purpose," Justice Gowda said in his judgment, adding that due procedures were not followed while acquiring the land in favour of the company.

Justice Mishra, in his reasoning, said acquisition in favour of a company is valid as long as it is for a public purpose and the funds for the same are used from the public exchequer. Having said this, he added that, "I'm exercising the power under Article 142 of the Constitution to quash the acquisition since the Nano car project has been shifted to Gujarat and the land is not being utilised for the purpose for which it was acquired."

(With agency inputs)

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