Md. Solaiman Hossain Vs. Bangladesh and others, 3 LNJ (2014) 675

Case No: Writ Petition No. 7497 of 2009

Judge: Farah Mahmub,

Court: High Court Division,,

Advocate: Mr. Mohammad Arshadur Rouf,Mr. M. Moniruzzaman Asad,Mr. Ekramul Hoque,,

Citation: 3 LNJ (2014) 675

Case Year: 2014

Appellant: Md. Solaiman Hossain

Respondent: Bangladesh and others

Delivery Date: 2013-05-28


HIGH COURT DIVISION
(SPECIAL ORIGINAL JURISDICTION)
 
Farah Mahbub, J
And
Abdur Rob, J.

Judgment on
28.05.2013
  Md. Solaiman Hossain
. . .Petitioner
-Versus-
Bangladesh and others
. . .Respondents
 
 
Port Rules, 1966
Rules 53, 54 and 55
বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবস্থাপনা আইন, ২০১০
Sections 6 and 9
বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবস্থাপনা বিধিমালা, ২০১১
Rule 3
The Port Rules can be applied for excavation of sand or earth from the river bed situated within a port, on the other hand বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবস্থাপনা আইন, ২০১০ and বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবস্থাপনা বিধিমালা, ২০১১ can be applied with regard to excavation of sand or earth from river bed “নৌ-বন্দর সীমার বাহি­র নির্ধারিত নৌ-পথ সমুহ হই­ত. as per the provision of বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবস্থাপনা আইন, ২০১০ Ministry of Land is the sole authority to grant lease for excavation of sand/earth from the concerned river bed.
A clear demarcation can be drawn in between the authority of the BIWTA and the Deputy Commissioner concern over excavation of sand/earth of the concerned river bed. As per rules 53,54and 55 of the Port Rules the Conservator (the BIWTA) is to give written permission to the respective licensee for excavation of sand/earth from the river bed situated “within a port”; whereas, vide sections 6 and 9 of the বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবস্থাপনা আইন, ২০১০ and rule 3 of  বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবস্থাপনা বিধিমালা, ২০১১ the Ministry of Land, is the sole authority with regard to excavation of sand/ earth নৌ-বন্দর সীমার বাহি­র নির্ধারিত নৌ-পথ সমুহ হই­ত .........”. . . . (19)
Process to allow the petitioner for excavation of sand/earth form the concerned river bed had commenced prior to promulgation of the Act No. 62 of 2010; but meanwhile vide the said Act the legislature has clearly vested the power to grant lease to the Ministry of Land asএকক কতৃপক্ষ”, covering the area as designated under section 9 of the Ain of 2010. However, since the petitioner has failed to show with supporting documents that the area in question is situatedনৌ-বন্দর সীমার বাহি­রas such, in order to excavate sand/earth of the area concern the petitioner has to come within the ambit of Act No. 62 of 2010, for vide section 3 of the said Act the applicability of other related laws have been over-ruled. . . . (22)

Mr. Mohammad Arshadur Rouf,  Advocate
. . . For the Petitioner.
Mr. M. Moniruzzaman Asad, Advocate
. . . For the Respondent No.9
Mr. Ekramul Hoque, D.A.G. with
Mr. Titus Hillol Rema, A.A.G. with
Ms. Farida Yeasmin, Advocate
...For the Respondent-Government.

Writ Petition No. 7497 of 2009
 
Judgment
Farah Mahbub, J:
 
In this Rule, issued under Article 102 of the Constitution of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, the respondents have been called upon to show cause as to why they should not be directed to allow the petitioner to extract sand/earth from the Meghna River Bed within the approach channel of Mouza Syed Khali Showra and Modhupur Gourabdi, Police Station-Hizla, District- Barisal as per the hydrographic chart and the “No objection certificate” issued by the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (in short, BIWTA) dated 24.08.2009 (Annexure-D to the writ petition) and also as to why the act of the respondent No.4 in not allowing the petitioner to extract sand/earth from the area concern should not be declared to have been done without any lawful authority and is of no legal effect.
 
Facts, in brief, are that the petitioner is a leading sand trader and the proprietor of M/S. Maria Enterprise who is involved in the business of sand/earth excavation from the river beds by dragger as per the approval so is given by the Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (in short, BIWTA). The petitioner duly applied to the said authority for obtaining permission for extraction of sand/ earth from the approach channel of Meghna river under Mouza Syed Khali Showra and Modhupur Gourabdi, Police Station-Hizla, District-Barisal. His application was duly processed by the concerned authority of BIWTA; however, a report was called for on the pheasability of his application; after proper enquiry the concerned officials submitted report on 22.06.2009 (Annexure-A, A(1-3) respectively) for taking necessary steps. The authority concern on 30.06.2009 issued an office letter to the Director, Hydrographic Division of BIWTA to prepare hydrographic chart in favour of the petitioner. Pursuant thereto the BIWTA authority on 16.07.2009 had directed the petitioner to deposit Tk. 1,10,113.74 and to inform the authority concern accordingly (Annexure-B and B-1 respectively). Accordingly, the hydrographic chart was duly prepared by the authority concern of BIWTA identifying the area fit for sand/earth excavation by dragger and had informed the respondent No.5 on 06.08.2009 for taking necessary steps in the matter (Annexure-C). After considering all the reports the BIWTA issued “No objection certificate” on 24.08.2009 to the petitioner and sent it to the Deputy Commissioner, Barisal(respondent No.4) for taking necessary steps vide Memo dated 19.10.2009(Annexure-D) subject to conditions, amongst others, -

(৭)............ প্রস্তাবিত ১০,০০,০০০ (দশ লক্ষ) ঘনফুট মাটি ঊত্তোলনের কাজটি অনুমতি পত্র প্রাপ্তির তারিখ হতে ১৫০(একশত পঞ্চাশ) দিনের মধ্যে সম্পন্ন  করতে হবে এবং নির্ধারিত সময়ের মধ্যে কাজ সম্পন্ন করতে ব্যর্থ হলে ঊওু এলাকা মাটি/বালি ঊত্তোলনের বিষয়ে আর কোন দাবী গ্রাহ্য হবে না;
............................
জেলা প্রশাসক-এর কার্যালয় হতে অনুমতি প্রাপ্তিসহ জেলা প্রশাসক কর্তৃক সরকারী ফি জমা নেয়ার পর আবেদনকারীকে প্রতি ঘনফুট মাটি/বালি ঊত্তোলনের জন্য ০.১৫ টাকা হারে রয়ালিটির, খনন পূর্ব এবং খননঊত্তর জরিপ কাজের যাবতীয় খরচ বিআইডব্লিঊটিএর অনুকূলে জমা দিতে হবে। এছাড়া আবেদনকারীকে সরকারী নিয়ম অনুযায়ী আয়কর ও ভ্যাট ইত্যাদি বিধি মোতাবেক সংশ্লিষট দপ্তরে পরিশোধ করতে হবে;
 
Pursuant thereto the petitioner made 2(two) applications dated 25.10.2009 and 02.11.2009 respectively to the Deputy Commissioner, Barisal for allowing him to deposit the royalty as per the “No objection certificate” so issued by the BIWTA, but no action was taken on the said application (Annexure-E and E-1 respectively). Even after receipt of the Memo dated 19.10.2009 from the office of the respondent No.1, the Deputy Commissioner, Barisal kept the matter pending without taking any steps whatsoever facilitating extraction activities of the petitioner.
 
Meanwhile, the issue relating to the authority of BIWTA under the existing provision of law to allow individuals to extract sand/earth from a navigable waterways as per the hydrographic chart and the authority of a Deputy Commissioner to float tender of “balumahal”, has been settled by this Hon’ble Court vide judgment and order dated 26.08.2008 passed in writ petition Nos.3198 and 2917 both of 2008 observing, inter alia,-

We find from the facts and materials portrayed before us that in order to maintain navigability of rivers and waterways a particular method of excavation is necessary and the actual paths for excavation to be followed is detailed in the Hydrographic Chart prepared by the BIWTA, which were also reflected in the terms of conditions mentioned in the no objection certificate and this appears to be a reflection of the provisions of Rules 53,54 and 55 of the Port Rules, which referred to the excavation of the river beds and issuance of license for that purpose. Rules 53,54 and 55 are quoted below for ease of reference:

53. Removal of Substance from beds of navigable waterways- No person shall remove or cause to be removed gravel, sand, earth or substance from the beds of the navigable waterways of a port, without the prior written permission of the Conservator and without the aid or under the supervision of such person, as the Conservator may appoint to take part in our supervise the performance of such work.

54. Constructions and excav ations affecting beds of navigable waterways- (a) No person shall make any construction or excavation of any kind on the bed or foreshore of navigable waterways within a port without a license from the Conservator. [Emphasis given]
(b) Any person, who wishes to obtain license and clause(a), shall apply in a prescribed form and shall pay an application fee of five rupess only. [Emphasis given]

55. License to construct or excavate-The Conservator may grant a periodical license applied for under Rule 54 on such terms and conditions as may be specified in the license and charge and collect a license fee for such occupation. In assessing such fee and determining the period of such license, the Conservator shall take into cons-ideration the importance and the nature of construction or excavation, the importance of the area, the volume of traffic, the landing and shipping charges for such traffic, the maintenance of the regime of the navigable waterways, and the effect of the construction or excavation therein. Any contravention of the terms and conditions as may be specified in the license shall render the license liable to cancellation without any notice and the license shall be liable to any of the penalties as specified in the Act.
This Rule shall be deemed to apply to all existing encroachments, constructions or excavation, if any, in or on the beds or foreshore of waterways within a port.

Turning back to the meeting of 8.7.2007, we find that the committee, which was supposed to report within 15 days, has not yet done so and in the mean time the Deputy Commissioner have floated tender notices for the excavation of the river-beds which is in our view not warranted by the instruction given by the Ministry. In particular it appears from writ petition No.2917 of 2008 that the Deputy Commissioner(Naogaon) has not even considered the aspect of extraction of sand by following the Hydrographic Chart. He has thereby totally ignored the concept of excavation of sand/soil from the river-beds for the purpose of maintaining navigability of the rivers. Similarly in writ petition No.3198 of 2008, although the impugned tender notice floated by the Deputy Commissioner(Tangail) indicates that the extraction is to be made in accordance with the Hydrographic Chart, the excavation process has been opened to general bidders without referring to the need to have a license/no objection certificate for the purpose of excavation as required by Rule 51 of the Port Rules.
In such view of the matter we find that both the tender notices issued by the Deputy Commissioners are not in acco-rdance with law. Moreover, the instruction given to the Deputy Commissioners by the Ministry of Water Transport (নৌ-পরিবহন) does not give any indication or direction to the Deputy Commissioner to float a tender, rather it directs the Deputy Commissioner to follow the Rules, and, as we have found earlier, the Rules relevant in this case are the Port Rules,1966, and the provisions of the Rules, 1966 have not been followed in publishing the tender notices.”
 
A further clarification was made by this Hon’ble Court vide judgment and order dated 07.05.2009 passed in writ petition No.1590 of 2009(Annexure-F). In view of the judgment and order dated 26.08.2008 (Annexure-E), however, an inter-ministerial meeting was held on 02.02.2009. In the said meeting it was decided that BIWTA would continue to give “No objection certificate” with regard to “e›`i mxgvi evwn‡i(evjy gnj e¨vZxZ)” and necessary royalty would be paid to the BIWTA and that the concerned Deputy Commissioner-pursuant to the said decision of BIWTA will take necessary steps to extract sand/earth of the concerned area (Annexure-G).
 
In this regard it has also been contended that as per the instruction of the BIWTA vide office letter dated 24.08.2009 the petitioner took all preparation for extraction of sand/earth and to that effect had applied to the respondent No.4 to allow him to pay royalty. In spite of such request the said respondent did not take any steps whatsoever as per the “No objection certificate” issued by the authority concern. Hence, the application.
 
Respondent No.9 entered appearance by filing affidavit-in- opposition contending, inter alia, that the Ministry of Shipping had directed the Deputy Commissioner, Tangail and Naogaon to issue license/no-objection certificate for the navigability of the river, if required for  that particular district; but in the said meeting nothing had been mentioned about Barisal district. In this regard it has also been stated that every year the respondent government invest a huge amount of money on the river bank in order to save river erosion area namely Chandpur Town, Lakhsmipur district and also Barisal district. Besides, every year the respondent-government uses boulders in order to protect the river bank of Meghna river.

Also, it has been stated that on 25.07.2010 the Deputy Director and Bandar and Transport Officer, BIWTA, Chandpur Nadi Bandar, Chandpur issued an office letter to the Deputy Commissioner, Chandpur stating, inter-alia, that earlier BIWTA had issued “No objection certificate” in favour of some businessmen for extraction/ excavation of sand/earth from the Padma/ Meghna river bed as per the hydrographic chart, but meanwhile the validity of the said certificates had been expired (Annexure-3). Further, the respondent concern on scrutiny duly had found out that on 05.08.2009 an inter-district meeting was held in the office of the Divisional Commissioner, Chittagong where in clause 16 of the said meeting it has been stated, inter-alia, that there was  a dispute as to fixation of the area of Chittagong, Bhola (Bhola Sadar and Daulat-hkhan), Lakhsmipur (Lakhsmipur Sadar and Ramgati), Bhola (Monpura)-Noakhali (Hatia), Chandpur (Haymchar)-Shariatpur (Goshaiyrhat) and Barisal (Hizla), (Annexure-4).
 
It has been stated further that the petitioner had obtained “No objection certificate” from the BIWTA on 24.08.2009 and that he had also obtained an order from this Hon’ble Court on 15.11.2009. Since then he has been extracting sand/earth from the river bed by taking undue advantage of the ad-interim order so passed in connection with the present writ petition; whereas vide Annexure-D to the writ petition the petitioner was permitted to extract 10,000,00 (Ten lac) cubic feet sand/earth from the river bed concern. It has also been contended that meanwhile Act No. 62 of 2010(Annexure-2) has been promulgated, where it has been clearly stated, inter-alia, that all “বালুমহল” must be leased out through tender process, as such, if the petitioner is interested to extract sand/earth from the river bed concern then he must go through tender process, as required by law.
 
Mr. Mohammad Arshadur Rouf, the learned Advocate appearing for the petitioner submits that Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (in short, the BIWTA) is the concerned authority for issuing permission for excavation of sand from the river-beds of the navigable rivers, and that having the said power BIWTA had issued “No objection certificate” in favour of the petitioner; as such, the concerned Deputy Commissioner is under legal obligation to provide full support to the petitioner in exercising his right to extract sand/earth from the specified area of Meghna river bed by giving approval to that effect. He further submits that the petitioner did not extract sand/earth from the river bed of Meghna although had received “No objection certificate” from the BIWTA along with a restrain order against those respondents from this Hon’ble Court on 15.11.2009. In this regard, he further submits that on receipt of the said order of injunction he made an application to the Deputy Commissioner, Barisal (respondent No.4) from time to time and lastly, on 17.05.2012 he made a prayer for accepting royalty and to allow him to extract sand from the Meghna river bed in the mouza Syedkhali Sawra and Modhupur. However, despite several applications of the petitioner the respondent No. 4 did not allow him to extract sand from the area concerned on the plea that they have filed Civil Petition for Leave to Appeal No.2159 of 2010 before the Appellate Division and the same is pending for hearing (Annexure-X(1). Accordingly, he submits that the BIWTA having issued “No objection certificate” the Deputy Commissioner, Barisal should give permission to the petitioner to extract sand/earth from the Meghna river bed at mouza Syedkhali Sawra and Madhupur Gaurabdi under Hizla Upazila and that the period of limitation to extract sand from Meghna river bed as provided in the said certificate shall start from the date when the permission shall be granted by the respondent No.4. Accordingly, he goes to argue that since no permission as yet has been granted by the said respondent and that the petitioner did not extract any sand from the said river bed; therefore, the period as prescribed in the said certificate is not yet operational. He lastly submits that for extract of sand from the Meghna river bed at Mouza Syed khali Shawra and Modhupur Gourabdi will not go to affect the eco system of Hizla Upazila and it will not cause any damage to the inhabitants of the said Upazilla, for there is no homestead or agricultural land nereby the said area, which is evident from the report of the local authority, so done after physical verification.
 
Mr. Md. Ekramul Hoque, the learned Deputy Attorney General appearing with Mr. Titus Hillol Rema and Ms. Farida Yeasmin, the learned Assistant Attorney Generals on behalf of respondent No.1 by filing affidavit in opposition submits that meanwhile the legislature has promulgated “বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবসহাপনা আইন, ২০১০” (in short, the Ain) on 20.12.2012 and that subsequently, in exercise of power as provided under section 16 of the said Ain the respondent government has framed “বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবসহাপনা বিধিমালা, ২০১১” (in short, the Rules). Accordingly, he submits that as per the said Ain and the Rules so made thereunder the Ministry of Land is the sole authority in the matter in question. Moreso, he goes to contend that vide the said Ain extraction of sand/earth from the river bed must be done through tender process. As such, he submits that since the petitioner has not obtained any lease/permission from the appropriate authority, he has no locus standi to extract sand from the land in question; on that score this Rule is liable to be discharged.  He further submits that the administration concerned never disturbed the petitioner, as alleged; rather taking advantage of the interim order of this Hon’ble Court passed in connection with the instant Rule, the petitioner is extracting sand even after expiry of permission of the BIWTA; however, due to the pendency of the instant writ petition the government is being deprived from collecting revenue by leasing out the “বালু মহল” in question through tender process. He also submits that on 22.04.2008 the Ministry of Land issued a memo to the effect that the area which had been mentioned in the hydrographic chart for excavation of sand was to be leased out by the concerned Deputy Commissioner through open tender process (Annexure-1 and 2 respectively) and as such, in view of the said Memo the BIWTA has no authority to accord permission for extraction of sand. Moreso, he submits that in view of the Memo dated 22.04.2008 the concerned Deputy Commissioner is the sole authority to lease out or deal with the matter for extraction of sand, through tender process; since the Deputy Commissioner concern has not leased out the land in question to the petitioner as such, he has no authority to extract sand/earth from the river bed in question. Accordingly, he submits that this Rule being devoid of any substance is liable to be discharged.
 
Mr. Moniruzzaman Asad the leaned Advocate appearing for the added respondent No. 9 submits that the extraction of sand from the river bed situated at Hizla Upazila shall create devastating effect upon the whole area of the said Upazila. As a result, the inhabitants of the said area shall loose their homestead, farm land and all their livelihood.
 
By filing an affidavit in reply Mr. Rouf submits that mouza Syedkhali Sawra and Modhupur from where the petitioner wishes to extract sand from the Meghna river bed are far away from the shore and in fact, the bank of the said river is at least 2(two) kilometer away from the said area. Moreso, there is no agricultural land nearby the said area. In addition, on physical verification of the said area the concern authority gave clear opinion that excavation of sand from the area concern will not cause any damage to the locality; rather, it is necessary to maintain navigability of the river channel. He further submits that said area is at the down stream of the river; whereas Chandpur Town is at the upper stream of the river and that the Chandpur River Port is about 60 km away from the said place and river bank of Hymchar Upazila is about 15 km away from the said place. He further submits that the area in question is the main channel for Dhaka-Barisal route and that for maintaining navigability of the said channel it is necessary to extract sand from the said channel, as is clearly reflected in the physical verification report of the concern authority. He further submits that the respondent No.9 is a resident of Chandpur district which has no naxus with Hizla Upazila and that Chandpur district is far away from Hizla Upazila of Barisal District; as such, he submits that extraction of sand from Meghna river bed within the Hizla Upazila will in no way affect Chandpur District. He lastly submits that respondent No.9 is a busy body and is not an aggrieved person in view of the context as stated above.
 
In this writ of mandamus the claim of the petitioner to allow him to extract sand/earth from Meghna river bed within the approach channel of Mouza Khali Showra and Modhupur Gourabdi, Police Station-Hizla, District- Barisal by the Deputy Commissioner, Barisal is rooted in the hydrographic chart dated 06.08.2009 (Annexure-C) and the “No objection certificate” dated 24.08.2009 (Annexure-D), both issued by the BIWTA.
 
From the official correspondences, as annexed by the petitioner to the writ petition, it appears that the procedures to apply for excavation of sand, to prepare hydrographic chart, to make payment to that effect, issuing “no objection certificate” by the BIWTA, are not the product of statute; however, in view of the judgment and order dated 26.08.2008 passed in Writ Petition Nos. 3198 and 2917 both of 2008, those are “....... a reflection of the provisions of Rules 53, 54 and 55 of the Port Rules, .....”. The said procedures were being adopted by the authority concern following practices/guide lines.
 
However, meanwhile the legislature on the count of যেহেতু বালুমহাল ইজারা প্রদান সংত্রুামত জটিলতা নিরসন, বালুমহাল হইতে পরিকল্পিতভাবে বালু ও মাটি উত্তোলন ও বিপণন, উহার নিয়মএণ, এতদসংত্রুামত সংঘটিত অপরাধসমূহ দমন এবং বালুমহাল ব্যবসহাপনার নিমিত্তে একক কর্তৃপক্ষ নির্ধারণের লক্ষ্যে বিধান করা সমীচীন ও প্রয়োজনীয় has promulgated “ বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবসহাপনা আইন, ২০১০” (in short, the Ain) published in gazette on 20.12.2010 giving overriding effect of  the statute. In this regard section 3 of the Ain provides inter-alia, আইনের প্রাধান্য-Ports Act, 1908 (Act XV of 1908) Inland Water Transport Authority Ordinance, 1958 (E.P.Ord.No.LXXV of 1908) খনি ও খনিজ সম্পদ (নিয়ন্ত্রণ ও উন্নয়ন) আইন, ১৯৯২ (১৯৯২ সনের ৩৯ নং আইন) অথবা কোন আইন বা তদধীন প্রণীত বিধি বা অন্য কোন আদেশ, প্রজ্ঞাপন বা নির্দেশনায় ব্যবস্থাপনা এবং এতদ্সংক্রান্ত অন্যান্য বিষয়ে যাহা কিছুই থাকুক না কেন, এই আইনের প্রাধান্য পাইবে।
 
Later, in exercise of power as provided under section 16 of the Ain the respondent government has framed“বালুমহাল ও মাটি ব্যবসহাপনা বিধিমালা, ২০১১ ” (in short, the Rules). The said statute and the Rules so made thereunder have introduced “process of tender (open)” vide rule-10, which runs as under:

দরপত্র দাখিল ও উহা চুড়ান্তকরণ।- (১) জেলা কমিটির সভাপতি দরপত্র ফরম সংশিলষ্ট বিভাগীয় কমিশনার কার্যালয়, জেলা প্রশাসকের কার্যালয় ও সংশ্লিষ্ট উপজেলা নির্বাহী কর্মকর্তার কার্যালয় হইতে বিক্রয় এবং উক্ত কার্যালয়সমূহে দরপত্র দাখিলের ব্যবস্থা গ্রহন করিবেন।
(২) দরপত্র বিজ্ঞপ্তি একটি বহুল প্রচারিত জাতীয় দৈনিক সংবাদপত্র, একটি স্থানীয় দৈনিক সংবাদপত্র এবং জেলা প্রশাসনের ওয়েবসাইটে প্রকাশ করিতে হইবে।
(৩) দরপত্র দাখিলের জন্য নির্ধারিত সময়ের ১৫(পনের) দিন পূর্বে দরপত্র বিজ্ঞপ্তি স্থানীয় পৌরসভা কার্যালয়, ইউনিয়ন পরিষদ কার্যালয়, উপজেলা নির্বাহী কর্মকর্তার কার্যালয় খনিজ সম্পদ উন্নয় ব্যুরো, পানি উন্নয়ন বোর্ড, উপজেলা ভুমি অফিস ও জেলা প্রশাসকের কার্যালয়ের টাঙ্গাইয়া প্রচার করিতে হইবে।
(৪) জেলা বালুমহাল ইজারা প্রদান সংক্রান্ত কমিটি প্রতিটি সিডিউলের মূল্য সরকারি ক্রয় সংক্রান্ত আইন ও বিধি অনুসারে বালুমহালের মূল্যমানের উপর ভিত্তি করিয়া নির্ধারন করিবে এবং দরদাতাগনকে তাহাদের উদ্ধৃত দরের ২৫% ভাগ জামানত হিসাবে ব্যাংক ড্রাফট বা পে-অর্ডারের মাধ্যমে দরপত্রের সাথে দাখিল করিতে হইবে।
(৫) কার্যাদেশে ইজারা গ্রহীতা কর্তৃক পরিশোধিত্য সমুদয় মুল্যের উল্লেখ থাকিবে এবং ইজারাগ্রহীতাকে কার্যাদেশে প্রাপ্তির ৭(সাত) কার্যদিবসের মধ্যে উক্ত সমুদয় অর্থ (ভ্যাট, আয়কর এবং সরকার নির্ধারিত অন্যান্য করসহ) সরকারের অনুকুলে জমা প্রদান করিতে হইবে।
(৬) উপ-বিধি (৫) এর অধীন অর্থ পরিশোধের পর পরবর্তী ৭(সাত) কার্যদিবসের মধ্যে পরিশিষ্ট ‘ক’ বা ‘খ’ তে উল্লিখিত ফরমে জেলা প্রশাসক ইজারা চুক্তি সম্পাদনপূর্বক (২৫০ টাকার নন-জুডিশিয়াল স্ট্যাম্প বা সরকার কর্তৃক সময় সময় জারীকৃত উপযুক্ত মূল্যমানের নন-জুডিশিয়াল স্ট্যাম্পে) ইজারাগ্রহীতাকে সংশ্লিষ্ট বালুমহলের দখল বুঝাইয়া দিবেন।
(৭) জেলা প্রশাসক কর্তৃক দখল বুঝাইয়া দেওয়ার পর ইজারাদার বালু উত্তোলন বা ড্রেজিং কাজ শুরু করিতে পারিবে।
(৮) নির্ধারিত সময়ের মধ্যে ইজারাদার কার্যাদেশে উল্লিখিত সমুদয় মূল্য সম্পূর্নরুপে পরিশোধ না করিলে জেলা প্রশাসক জামানতের অর্থ বাজেয়াপ্তসহ ইজারার কার্যাদেশ বাতিল করিতে পারিবেন এবং এইরুপ ক্ষেত্রে জমাকৃত অর্থ বাজেয়াপ্তিসহ পুনঃ ইজারা প্রদানের কার্যক্রম গ্রহন বা পরবর্তী সিদ্ধান্তের জন্য জেলা কমিটির নিকট পেশ করিবেন।
(৯) পর পর দুটি ইজারা ডাকে সরকার নির্ধারিত ইজারা মূল্য পাওয়া না গেলে নির্ধারিত তৃতীয় ডাকের সর্বোচ্চ ডাক গ্রহীতাকে কমিটি বিশেষ বিবেচনায় ইজারা প্রদানের বিষয়টি বিবেচনা করিতে পারিবে, তবে তৃতীয় বারের সর্বোচ্চ  ডাক প্রথম ও দ্বিতীয় বারের সর্বোচ্চ ডাকের চেয়ে কম হইলে কমিটি উক্ত ডাকসমুহের সর্বোচ্চ দরদাতাদের পর্যায়ক্রমে ইজারা গ্রহনের আমমএন জানাইতে পারিবে এবং উক্ত ইজারা ডাকে কেউ আগ্রহী না হইলে কমিটি পুনঃদরপত্র আহবান করিবে।
(১০) ইজারা প্রদানের মাধ্যমে আদায়কৃত অর্থ বা বাজেয়াপ্তকৃত, প্রদত্ত করাদি ব্যতিত, যাবতীয় অর্থ বালুমহল ইজারাসংক্রান্ত নির্ধারিত কোডে জমা প্রদান করিতে হইবে।
(১১) ইজারা মূল্য নির্ধারনের ক্ষেত্রে, জেলা কমিটি বালুর পরিমান, বাজারমূল্য, উত্তোলন ব্যয় ইত্যাদি বিবেচনাপূর্বক অথবা পূর্ববর্তী তিন বৎসরের ইজারা মূল্যের ১০% উর্ধ হারের ভিত্তিতে সংশ্লিষ্ট বালুমহলের ইজারা মূল্য নির্ধারণ করিবে।
 
However, vide section 9 the “listed applicants” will be able to bid in order to obtain lease for the respective “বালুমহাল” for excavation of sand/earth. In this regard, rule 3 (1) and (2) of the Rules clearly prescribe the functions of BIWTA with regard to preparation of hydrographic chart of the area which is situated “নৌ বন্দর সীমার বাহিরে”, which are quoted below:

“ ৩। ড্রেজিং এর মাধ্যমে বালু উত্তোলন সংত্রুামত বিধান, ইত্যাদি। - (১) নৌ-বন্দর সীমার বাহিরে নির্ধারিত নৌ-পথসমূহ হইতে বালু উত্তোলনের জন্য নৌ-পরিবহন কর্তৃপক্ষ হাইড্রোগ্রাফিক জরিপ কাজ পরিচালনা করিবে এবং হাইড্রোগাফিক চার্টের ভিত্তিতে বালু উত্তোলনের নিমিত্ত ড্রেজিংয়ের এলাকা চিহিুত করিয়া উত্তু চিহিুত সহানের উত্তোলনযোগ্য বালুর পরিমাণ নির্ণয় করিয়া হাইড্রোগ্রাফিক চার্ট, তফসিলসহ মৌজাম্যাপ ও প্রতিবেদন সংশ্লিষ্ট জেলা প্রশাসক বরাবরে প্রদান করিবে। (Emphasis given)
(২) নৌ-পরিবহন কর্তৃপক্ষের হাইড্রোগ্রাফিক চাট, তফসিলসহ মৌজাম্যাপ ও প্রতিবেদন অনুযায়ী এবং আইনের ধারা ৯ এর বিধান অনুসরণত্রুমে সংশ্লিষ্ট জেলা প্রশাসক উত্তু শ্রেণীভূত্তু নৌ-পথকে বালুমহাল ঘোষণা করিবেন। ”

Pursuant to which the concern Deputy Commissioner following the procedure as provided under section 9 of the Ain, 2010 shall declare the said route as “বালুমহল”. However, under section 6 of the Ain, the lease issuing authority
for excavation of sand/earth from the respective “বালুমহল” situated at “ নৌ-বন্দর সীমার বাহিরে” squarely lies with the Ministry of Land, which will co-ordinate said process with the assistance of other related departments/ organizations of the government, which runs as under:

“ ৬। একক কর্তৃপক্ষ- (১) দেশের যে কোন চর এলাকা অথবা যে কোন সহলভাগ হইতে বালু বা মাটি সরকার কর্তৃক ইজারা প্রদানের ক্ষেত্রে এবং সরকারি যে কোন কর্তৃপক্ষ কর্তৃক নির্দিষ্ট নদী, নদী বন্দর, সমুদ্র বন্দর, খাল-বিল প্রভৃতি সহান হইতে উত্তোলিত বালু বা মাঢি~র বিপণনের প্রয়োজন দেখা দিলে উত্তু বিপণনের জন্য একক কর্তৃপক্ষ হইবে ভূমি মমএণালয়।
৬(২) উপ-ধারা (১) এর অধীন কার্যত্রুম গ্রহণের ক্ষেত্রে ভূমি মমএণালয় প্রয়োজনে সংশ্লিষ্ট সংসহা বা কর্তৃপক্ষের সহিত সমন্বয় করিবে ।”

In view of the stated position of law, a clear demarcation can be drawn in between the authority of the BIWTA and the Deputy Commissioner concern over excavation of sand/earth of the concerned river bed. As per rules 53,54and 55 of the Port Rules, (as quoted above) the Conservator (the BIWTA) is to give written permission to the respective licensee for excavation of sand/earth from the river bed situated “within a port”; whereas, vide sections 6 and 9 of the Ain and rule 3 of the Rules, 2011 the Ministry of Land, is the sole authority with regard to excavation of sand/earth “নৌ-বন্দর সীমার বাহিরে নির্ধারিত নৌ-পথ সমুহ হইতে .........”.

In the present writ petition, the petitioner has failed to show with supporting documents that the area in question is situated “নৌ-বন্দর সীমার বাহিরে .......”; as such, the direction so sought for by the petitioner cannot be entertained in the eye of law.  Accordingly, the decisions so have been relied upon by the petitioner cannot be made applicable in the facts and circumstances of the instant case.

At this juncture, the learned Advocate for the petitioner submits that since pursuant to the direction of BIWTA the petitioner has already paid royalty hence, a vested right has accrued in his favour; moreover, prior to promulgation of the said Ain of 2010 process to excavate sand/earth from the concerned river has been initiated by the BIWTA; hence, Act 62 of 2010 cannot be made applicable in the case of the petitioner.

It is fact that process to allow the petitioner for excavation of sand/earth form the concerned river bed had commenced prior to promulgation of the Act No. 62 of 2010; but meanwhile vide the said Act the legislature has clearly vested the power to grant lease to the Ministry of Land as “একক করতিপক্ষ", covering the area as designated under section 9 of the Ain of 2010. However, since the petitioner has failed to show with supporting documents that the area in question is situated “নৌ-বন্দর সীমার বাহিরে” as such, in order to excavate sand/earth of the area concern the petitioner has to come within the ambit of Act No. 62 of 2010, for vide section 3 of the said Act the applicability of other related laws have been over-ruled.

However, so far excavation of sand/earth from Meghna river bed beyond the prescribed period, as mentioned in Annexure-D to the writ petition, it is the categorical assertion of the petitioner that he did not excavate sand/earth from the said area of Meghna, which is, however, disputed by the respondent-government.

Since this court cannot embark into a disputed issue hence, refrains from making any observation to that effect.

In the result, the Rule is discharged without any order as to costs.

The authority concern is hereby directed to initiate process of tender immediately preferrably within a period of 1(one) month from the date of receipt of the copy of this judgment and order in due compliance of law.

There will be no order as to costs.

Ed.