• Laws relating to sale of agricultural land in Bihar to outsider

I wanted to sell an agricultural piece of land located in Bihar. That land belongs to my ancestors. I made a verbal agreement with a person who has paid me an advance payment towards the land deal. However, there is another person who has turned up to purchase the land now, and he claims that he is an owner of an adjacent plot to my land which I want to sell and he claims that I can only sell it to a person like him who is adjacent plot owner. He has threatened to file a law suit if we go ahead with our land sale with the first person who has paid us the advance. 

I want to know if there is any such law where I MUST sell my land to only adjacent land holders. If yes, then if I go back and cancel my verbal agreement with the first person and return his cash, can a case of cheating be filed against me? What should I do? Ideally I wish to keep my original agreement intact. Kindly advise.
Asked 2 years ago in Property Law from Bokaro Steel City, Jharkhand
The  law of preemption is there which makes the seller to offer land to the adjacent land owner first if he wants to sell the and. This is alw is however hardly followed.
Mere cancellation of sale agreement and return of advance money does not make the dela as cheating. However before doing this first ensure whether the adjacent land owner is ready to oay the market rice or not and for doing this send him a a notice quoting a price for your land and fixing a deadline to seal the deal. If he fails to do this then you can sell the land to anyone you choose.
Devajyoti Barman
Advocate, Kolkata
5222 Answers
54 Consultations
4.9 on 5.0
Hi, unless there is an agreement you are not bound to sell the same in favour of adjesent owner. And secondly cancellation of agreement does not amount to cheating.
Pradeep Bharathipura
Advocate, Bangalore
4105 Answers
133 Consultations
4.3 on 5.0
1. Yes, before selling the said land you should offer it to the adjacent land owner as per law,

2. Send him a legal notice offering him to sell the said land at the price to be paid with in 30 days at which you have already contracted to sell it to the other person,

3. If he refuses to comply with, you can sell it to the other person.
Krishna Kishore Ganguly
Advocate, Kolkata
12113 Answers
231 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
1. According to the law of pre-emption, which will apply to your case, when any land is to be sold by the owner, he shall first offer it to the owner of the land adjacent to the land which is to be sold.

2. If the land is sold to some one else the adjacent land owner shall be entitled to file a lawsuit to pre-empt the sale of land and also to get the land transferred to him after the sale is complete. If you sell the land to the person with whom you had an oral understanding and who has paid you the advance, the adjacent land owner can after the sale move to court against the purchaser, whereas the purchaser may file a lawsuit against you for refund of his money. Hence, it can result in multiplicity of litigation.

3. If the adjacent land owner is willing to pay the market price then offer the land to him. If he is not willing to pay it then you may go ahead and sell the same to the person to whom you made an oral promise to sell the land. The right of pre-emption does not confer on the adjacent land owner the latitude to get a property at the price desired by him.

4. You have not made a written agreement with the other person. So no cheating case would lie against you as long as you return in entirety the advance paid to you.
Ashish Davessar
Advocate, Jaipur
18158 Answers
449 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
1) how did your receive advance payment ? 

2) was it by cash or cheque? 

3) did you give any receipt for advance made ? 

4) has your neighbor made written offer to you . ? 

5) is he willing to pay market rate of land ? 

6) is the offer equivalent to offer received by you from another person ? 

7) if neighbor is willing to pay market value he would be entitled to right of preemption under provisions of bihar land ceiling act 

8) in the event you fail to give him right to purchase your land application would be made to DLCR wherein you would be directed to convey land to your neighbor within stipulated period
Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
23279 Answers
1219 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
Section 16(3)(i) of the Bihar cieling act Act, whereunder a pre-

emption application is filed, is reproduced hereinbelow:

          "3(i) When any transfer of land is made after
          the commencement of the Act to any person
          other than a co-sharer or a raiyat of
          adjoining land, any co-sharer of the
          transferor or any raiyat holding land
          adjoining the land transferred, shall be
          entitled, within three months of the date of
          registration of the documents, of the transfer,
          to make an application before the Collector
          in the prescribed manner for the transfer of
          the land to him on the terms and conditions
          contained in the said deed:
               Provided that no such application shall
          be entertained by the Collector unless the
          purchase money together with a sum equal to
                      7


          ten percent thereof is deposited in the
          prescribed manner within the said period."

It is evident on a plain reading of the same that a co-sharer
or an adjoining raiyat with respect to transfer of the land

shall be entitled to the claim of pre-emption.

2) further section      3 of the Ceiling Act which provides that the
      provisions of this Act shall have effect
      notwithstanding anything contrary contained in
      any other law, custom, usage or agreement for
      the time being in force, or any decree or order of
      any court; the only exception being made to the
      provisions of the Bihar Bhudan Yagna Act, 1944.

3) under circumstances it is advisable to give your neighbor option to purchase your land
Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
23279 Answers
1219 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
Under the provisions of the Bihar Bhudan Yagna Act, 1944 it is better to send legal notice to adjacent land owner with your offering him to buy the land. And demand to pay the full amount to be paid with in 30 days at which you have already contracted to sell it to the other person. If he refuses to accept your offer you can sell it to the other person.
Ajay N S
Advocate, Ernakulam
1916 Answers
19 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0

Ask a Lawyer

Get legal answers from top-rated lawyers in 1 hour. It's quick, easy, and anonymous!
Ask a Lawyer

Property Lawyers

T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
14056 Answers
127 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
23279 Answers
1219 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
Ashish Davessar
Advocate, Jaipur
18158 Answers
449 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
Krishna Kishore Ganguly
Advocate, Kolkata
12113 Answers
231 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
Devajyoti Barman
Advocate, Kolkata
5222 Answers
54 Consultations
4.9 on 5.0
Rajgopalan Sripathi
Advocate, Hyderabad
868 Answers
43 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
Atulay Nehra
Advocate, Noida
436 Answers
15 Consultations
4.7 on 5.0
Shivendra Pratap Singh
Advocate, Lucknow
2752 Answers
41 Consultations
4.9 on 5.0
Ajay N S
Advocate, Ernakulam
1916 Answers
19 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0
S J Mathew
Advocate, Mumbai
1950 Answers
65 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0