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Path dependence and the longevity of the law The first of the two key questions to which the focus will be directed in the following deals with the longevity of the Land Acquisition Act (1894). In the historical literature dealing with the influence of the colonial regime on the Indian economy and society, land plays a central role as a controversial resource, but the Land Acquisition Act (1894), which regulates expropriations, is rarely mentioned explicitly. This has a certain justification, since the colonial state did not see it as its task to advance India's industrialization or to expand the infrastructure beyond its own needs for the common good.318 On the contrary, historians speak of a de-industrialization of India during the colonial era.319 Correspondingly, land was expropriated for mines, railway lines or commercial and public buildings in the colonial period320; however, the extent of these expropriations was much smaller than in the Nehru era or the period of India's economic liberalization in the early 1990s. It can be generalized that these land expropriations were carried out during the colonial period only to the extent that they served the primary aim of economic exploitation of the colony. Ultimately, Jürgen Osterhammel defines colonialism as: "A relationship of domination between collectives, in which the fundamental decisions about the lifestyle of the colonized are made and actually implemented by a culturally different and hardly adaptable minority of the colonial rulers, giving priority to external interests" 321. These external interests not only shaped the expropriation instruments discussed here in the form of the Land Acquisition Act (1894) and 3. 318 An important secondary condition is of course the lower population density during the colonial period. Between 1901 and 2001 alone, India's population roughly quadrupled, according to census data. 319 Sarkar (1983), pp. 28-30. 320 Sarkar (2010), p. 104. 321 Osterhammel (1995), p. 21. 109 its predecessor, but also the drastic changes in the economic and social structure made more than a hundred years before 1894 in Bengal's economic and social structure, first and then major ones Areas of India that were directly or indirectly exposed to the influence of British colonial power. In the political debate in the field of land acquisition, it is often emphasized that the law of 1894 was a colonial law, as if that were sufficient grounds for its abolition. If this were the case, the question remains why in the long period from 1947 to 2013 the path taken by the British was continued. Although the Land Acquisition Act (1894), like most other laws enacted by the British, served the aforementioned external interests, it remained in force after independence - with minor changes in 1962 and 1984 - and was repeated through 2013 and applied with significant effects for those affected. Even more: the laws that were passed at the state level after independence were materially and formally based strongly on the law from the colonial era.322 The argument that is to be elaborated in the following chapters can be summarized as follows: In the During the British colonial rule in South Asia, state instruments of expropriation were created at the legal level in the form of the Land Acquisition Act (1894), which served the economic and administrative interests of the colonial power. The prerequisite for such a law was initially the 'invention' of private land ownership in India, which was intended to replace the customary law traditions with regard to land use that had prevailed until then. The instruments of expropriation corresponded to an ideology of the Rule of Law, i.e. a British legal system presented as superior, which in turn was intended to legitimize colonial rule on the Indian subcontinent.323 However, the law was only applied to a limited extent. After independence, the leadership of the young state took over the essential elements of this expropriation instrument, as it served the realization of its economic policy goals and was very well compatible with the dominant idea of ​​a planning state and the development of a national heavy industry. The 322 See: Aggarwala (1991), pp. 977 ff. 323 See: Metcalf (1995), p. 1. 3. Path dependence and the longevity of Act 110 Land Acquisition Act (1894) remained in force while the property law provisions of the Government of India Act (1935) entered the constitution. The result of the controversies about the extent and limits of property rights at the constitutional level in the first decades of the independent state was the establishment of a fully developed 'expropriating state', which at the same time carried out land reforms and claimed land for large industrial projects. The state "gave land with one hand and took it with the other" 324. However, a combination of a weakening of property rights with the 44th Amendment of 1978 and an increased application of the eminent domain competence of the state (at the federal level and, increasingly, at the state level) led to an increasingly pronounced form of an 'expropriating state'325 , which increasingly encountered resistance not only from those directly affected but also increasingly from other organized groups. The legitimacy of the “expropriating state” was increasingly eroding in the face of new forms of land expropriation in the course of the liberalization of the Indian economy. Resistance to these practices created the basis for first social and later party political mobilization, which led to the inclusion of the topic in the government agenda at federal and state level. The political process culminated in the abolition of the Land Acquisition Act (1894) in 2013. In the following chapters, the main focus will first be on the origins of the 'expropriating state' during the colonial period, followed by the establishment and expansion of the same after independence to investigate. 324 Chakravorty (2013), p. 67. 325 As shown in the previous chapter, Eminent Domain can be understood as a variable that is more or less pronounced in certain historical phases and that is located on the three levels (1) of the constitution (if existing), (2) statutory law and (3) application practice manifested by the executive branch. A state can therefore, for example, have a strong eminent domain at the first two levels, but make little use of the competence to expropriate land (similar to a legal system that provides for the death penalty by law, but does not actually apply it). 3. Path dependency and the longevity of law 111 The colonial legacy: private property on land, bureaucratic law and eminent domain In the following, the first two steps in the above-mentioned line of argument will be discussed: First, the creation of individual property rights to land as a prerequisite for the establishment of an eminent domain competence of the state and, secondly, the material design of the state instruments of expropriation in the colonial context. The phases of British interaction with the Indian subcontinent can be roughly divided into (1.) the period before the Battle of Plassey in 1757, (2.) the phase of conquering new territories and the consolidation of rule by the East India Company up to the uprising (or War of Independence) of 1857 and the Government of India Act of 1858 and finally (3rd) to the phase of the crown colony from 1858 to independence in 1947.326 During the first phase the focus of the activities of the British East India Company was based on sea trade and the Mughal Empire reached its greatest extent, the second and third phases are of particular interest here. In simple terms, the rule of the Mughal dynasty was based on control of land.327 The more land they controlled, the more tax revenue they could obtain, and the more land taxes they could collect from the population of conquered areas, the more they could invest in their army with which they in turn could conquer more land, and so on.328 For the British East India Company, the political order, and especially the mode of tax collection, was among the Mughals, who consisted of a relatively small layer of jagirdars329, as well as a larger number of mansabdars and Zamindars left 330 collecting taxes from the peasants, of great interest. As a result of the Battle of Plassey, Robert Clive took over the tax privilege in 1765 (Di- 3.1 326 Other categorizations are of course also useful, see for example: Sarkar (1983), p. 24, who quotes the historian RP Dutt; or: Chakravorty (2013), Pp. 76 f. 327 See Rothermund's chapter “The Structure of the Traditional Economy”, in: Rothermund (1993), pp. 1-7. 328 Chakravorty (2013), p. 72. 329 Rothermund (1978), p. 12 330 See Robb (2002), p. 91. 3. Path Dependence and the Longevity of Law 112 wani) from the Nawab of Bengal. The interference of the East India Company in the Bengali economy in combination with poor harvests as a result of a drought led to the great famine of 1769-1773, which fell victim to about a third of the population of Bengal. With the Regulating Act of 1773, in view of the widespread self-enrichment of the local employees of the East India Company, the British Parliament took over part of the responsibility for the affairs of government in Bengal for the first time.331 Due to the great distance to Great Britain, however, the discretion of the employees of the company on site remained still big. Kolkata (then Calcutta) became the capital of the province of Bengal and Warren Hastings became the governor general.332 From then on, the charter of the East India Company, which was organized as a joint stock company, had to be renewed by the Board of Control in London every twenty years, with the influence of the East Indies -Company on civil government business in Bengal slowly increased. At the same time, the controlled area grew through wars and annexations, until large parts of South Asia were ruled by the East India Company in the middle of the nineteenth century. Land taxes financed British expansion, similar to the Mughal era. It was only in the course of the century that land-based income became less important in relation to other sources of income.333 At the beginning of British rule in South Asia, however, the focus was on military and civil control over land. What is relevant now is the way in which the British dealt with the conquered land. Private property on land If the present paper speaks of land expropriation by the state, this presupposes that property rights to land exist at all. One can argue that the idea of ​​sovereignly guaranteed, individual and exclusive property rights to land in India is a direct result of the influence of British colonial rule.334 For example, HM Jain is of the opinion that the British not only have property rights 3.1.1 331 See: Kulke and Rothermund (2004), p. 245 ff. 332 Ibid., P. 236 ff. 333 Ibid., P. 277. 334 See also: Robb (2002), p. 130. 3.1 The colonial legacy 113 on land India, but also the idea that the Eminent Domain Doctrine is an essential part of state sovereignty.335 The literature on Eminent Domain seems to largely accept such a pre-constitutional right of the state today.336 Jain's statement suggests that in the time before the British colonial rule, the understanding of property was different. Barbara D. Metcalf and Thomas R. Metcalf emphasize accordingly: “In India, prior to the coming of the British, the bundle of rights associated with property were not concentrated in a land 'owner', but rather dispersed among all those, among them the peasant cultivator, the zamindar, and the government, who had an interest in the land. ”337 The establishment of the eminent domain competence means more than the mere fact that a political elite claims control over an area for itself, rather, it implies that a state undertakes the ambitious attempt to redefine and enforce legal relationships with regard to land. This requires deep interventions in the social and economic structures of the dominated area. Indeed, it generally makes sense to speak of a bundle of rights in relation to land, like Metcalf and Metcalf. As already explained in the chapter on eminent domains and land fragmentation, the various rights to a piece of land, which are summarized under the heading of 'property', are often shared by many people. It is important to note that the term 'land ownership' 'is not viewed as a static, fixed concept which, once defined, could claim universal validity.338 The nature and scope of the property right is always the subject of social negotiation processes, which in turn reflect power structures. In addition to a representation of fragmented legal relationships in relation to a piece of land in the regional context of India, there is a tradition in historiography which postulates that there is private property in India in 335 Jain (1968), p. 12. 336 See, for example, the introductory sentence in Aggarwala's Compulsory Acquisition of Land in India: “The Sovereign power to every State has authority to appropriate for purposes of public utility lands within the limits of its jurisdiction”, in: Aggarwala (1991), Preface (ix). 337 Metcalf and Metcalf (2006), p. 78. 338 See Congost (2003), p. 75. 3. Path Dependency and the Longevity of Law 114 Land in general would never have existed.339 The historian Irfan Habib emphasizes that a point of view, according to the land in India belonged to 'the king', found its way into the image of India of the European East India companies through travel reports in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.340 Karl Marx - together with others - stands for this representation, which in the tradition of Hegel is Indian society considered static.341 In an article for the New York Daily Tribune dated June 7, 1858, in which Marx dealt with the subject of land tenure in India following the annexation of Oudh342 by the British, he notes that: “It is agreed that in India, as in most Asian countries, the ultimate property in the soil vests [sic] the Government ”343. The precise structure of land ownership during the Mughal period will not be discussed here.344 It should be noted, however, that the idea of ​​a simplified state in which the king was generally the owner of the land is not a reality in either Hindu or Muslim law 345 The thesis that the peasants were the real landowners in pre-colonial India is just as inapplicable.346 Habib takes the view that one should generally abandon the idea of ​​an exclusive property right to land and instead start with a system that which consisted of a network of transferable rights and obligations in which different claimants (rulers, zamindar, farmer and others) asserted their differently defined claims to the shares of the yield of a land unit.347 Different ruling dynasties left similar geological layers of sediment civil practices related to land ownership and use. In the Mughal period, for example, it was customary to earn military leaders with land 339 Kumar (1998), p. 135. 340 Habib (2014), p. 123. However, such travel reports also repeatedly produced misunderstandings. So it is quite possible that the reference to a 'king' did not denote a secular, but a divine ruler. 341 See: Thorner (1966), pp. 37-38. 342 Also called Awadh. This was a former princely state in what is now Uttar Pradesh. 343 Marx (1858), p. 313. 344 See in detail: Habib (2014), p. 123 ff. 345 Ibid., P. 126. 346 Ibid., P. 126. 347 Freely translated from: Habib (2014) , Pp. 134-135. 3.1 Rewarding the Colonial Legacy 115.348 The new rulers added more to these entitlements. The British found it difficult - like many historians to this day - to apply their own legal conventions and terms to the conditions found in the various regions of India. For B.H. Baden-Powell was the idea of ​​an explicitly defined set of rights associated with property on land, exclusively a Western conceptual construct. For example, he wrote in his work The Land Systems of British India349, which arose around the same time as the law examined here: “We do not, of course, expect to meet in Sanskrit literature with any juristic analysis of ownership, or of the theory of 'possession', or a 'just title', or the nature of the 'rights of enjoyments' which cluster around ownership; these are refinements of Western Jurisprudence. ”350 Baden-Powell's work was the most comprehensive attempt during the colonial period to systematically record land conditions in India.351 Eric Stokes describes his work as“ encyclopaedic labor ”352, which he, however, is based on a“ muddled thinking “353 looks shaped.Baden-Powell's quote suggests that towards the end of the nineteenth century the British elite displayed a certain sense of superiority when it came to land management issues. While Baden-Powell complained about the lack of indigenous Indian legal doctrine with regard to property rights, others went further and, like Karl Marx, spoke of a general absence of private property on land in the 'East'.354 The thesis was used in Karl A. Wittfogels Oriental Despotism 348 Rothermund (1978), p. 12. 349 This three-volume work from the years 1892-1894 was a handbook for the British colonial administration and offered an overview of the various tax systems and regional characteristics relating to land. 350 Baden-Powell (1894), p. 206. 351 Baden-Powell describes in his work among other things the different leases, types of tax collection and collection and the important distinction between the land systems in the north and the ryotwari system in the south. Due to the temporal proximity of his publications to the Land Acquisition Act (1894) examined here, his work offers a vivid insight into the British view (Baden-Powell was himself a judge) on the Indian land systems. 352 Stokes (1978), p. 4. 353 Ibid., P. 4. 354 See also: Kumar (1998), p. 135. 3. Path dependence and the longevity of Law 116 (1957) picked up and met with rejection among others by authors such as Daniel Thorner355 and Pranab Bardhan356. Historian Perry Anderson in Lineages of the Absolutist State357 points out that the opinion that land in India belongs to the ruler, government (or whatever state it is constituted) has been part of a widespread way of thinking among Western scholars358 in South Asia and saw 'oriental despotism' at work elsewhere.359 The British colonial rulers opposed this alleged despotism with their Rule of Law.360 As Metcalf and Metcalf emphasize, they defined themselves as a civilized nation and developed a basis of legitimation for themselves, which was necessary to maintain their Rule was necessary.361 Metcalf and Metcalf point out that colonial power also created "its own version of the despotic" 362. To understand this, it is necessary to revisit the developments in Bengal a hundred years before Baden-Powell and the Land Acquisition Act (1894). Common Law and Bureaucratic Law The Permanent Settlement, which was enforced in 1793 under Governor Lord Cornwallis, successor to Warren Hastings, was of decisive importance to the subject under discussion as it introduced individual, private ownership of land in India363 and with it first laid the foundations for an explicit eminent domain doctrine. Whereas traditionally the importance of land was more that of a privilege to use364, the transfer of the entire bundle to property 3.1.2 355 Thorner (1966). 356 Bardhan (1984), pp. 212-213. 357 See: Anderson (1974), p. 462 ff. 358 He explicitly names James Harrington, Francois Bernier, Montesquieu and Richard Jones. 359 Anderson (1974), p. 472. 360 Conrad (1994), p. 138 f. 361 Metcalf and Metcalf (2006), p. 58, 362 Ibid., P. 58, 363 Rothermund (1994), p. 123 364 On the traditional (pre-Islamic) economy, in which the small family business was predominant in agriculture, Rothermund writes: “Land was not yet a commodity that was freely bought and sold. The peasant family who tilled the soil was in greater demand than the land, 'which belonged to 3.1 The Colonial Inheritance 117 rights (land could be inherited, sold, auctioned, given away, and sub-leased) to the Zamindars that all other understandings and practices regarding the use of land were pushed aside. Land ownership and was henceforth exclusive and absolute.365 In order to better understand the current controversies about the role of the state in relation to land, which still persist more than two hundred years after the permanent settlement, it is helpful to first distinguish between common law and bureaucratic law . For the legal philosopher Roberto M. Unger, customary law is characterized by the fact that it is based on a factual regularity of behavior and, moreover, on the prevailing feeling that this behavior is accompanied by certain obligations and entitlements.366 According to Unger, this customary law is neither public nor positive law, as it does not depend on an organizationally separate, central government, but on generally accepted behavioral practices. In contrast, in Unger's development model of law, bureaucratic law represents a stage of development that differs from customary law in that bureaucratic law is both public and positivized law. While common law is based on consensual traditions, bureaucratic law is created by a small, dedicated group.367 H.C.L. Merillat emphasizes the historical importance of customary law in relation to land taxes, which have been levied since pre-Islamic times and whose collection methods have evolved over time: “Land revenue began as a physical dividing of the harvest on the village threshing floor. A fixed measure in pecks or bushels (to use familiar English terms) or certain proportion of the crop went to each one in the village who by station or service had a customary claim to that share - to the raja or other ruler, to the village officials, to the cultivators themselves, to the cobbler, carpenter, herdsman, watchman, potter, blacksmith, barber, and other arhim who first cleared it ', as ancient law codes proclaimed. Landlords were not landowners; they only had the right or privilege to collect taxes from the peasants. They kept some of these dues for themselves and handed over the rest to the ruler or another privileged person in the hierarchy of those who lived on the work of the peasantry. " In: Rothermund (1993), p. 1. 365 See: Mukhopadhyay (2006), introduction (viii). 366 Unger (1977), pp. 48-58. 367 Ibid., Pp. 58-66. 3. Path Dependence and the Longevity of Law 118 tisans and village servants who provided services to the others in the village and in this manner received their pay. The sharing of the crop was not only a way of paying the ruler's due but was indeed the very basis of village organization, intimately tied to the caste system and customary law according to which duties in the village and shares in the common produce were fixed for each person. ”368 According to Unger's scheme, the time of the Mughal rule represents a transitional phase between the two stages of development. The East India Company employees, in turn, were faced with the task of translating the locally applicable customary norms into a language that they could understand bring to. Translating foreign texts and oral traditions in order to be able to publish and codify them posed considerable challenges.369 It was a project of converting common law to bureaucratic law and from old Hindu texts to contemporary British legal norms. As Bernard Cohn describes, Indologists such as William Jones were commissioned to carry out this translation work.370 The process was driven partly by the economic considerations of creating an institutional structure that was as favorable as possible for the shareholders of the East India Company371, but partly also by genuine interest to the prevailing traditions. Dietmar Rothermund calls this aspect of the codification of Hindu law an example of “enlightened and sympathetic misunderstanding of Indian tradition” 372. One can argue that the process of creating the class of Zamindars as a result of Permanent Settlement (not in all of India, but in large parts of eastern and northern India) was also the result of such a translation process with all its inaccuracies, misunderstandings and errors. In the course of the nineteenth century, however, the genuine interest in local legal traditions was overturned by an increasing feeling of superiority among the British. 368 Merillat (1970), pp. 10-11. 369 Cohn (1996), pp. 66-67. 370 Ibid., P. 70. 371 According to a logic according to which 'indigenous' rules that are accepted by the population lead to fewer conflicts and thus less administrative effort. 372 Rothermund (1978), pp. 51-52. 3.1 The Colonial Legacy 119 is urging, which related to its own legal system compared to the Indian one373. Zamindar and District Collector In addition to the process of transition from more common law obligations regarding land to a bureaucratic law that began with the Mughals and accelerated under British rule, arguably the most important innovation is individual ownership of land under the Permanent settlement. This concept was taken from the British model and virtually imposed on the Indian economy and society374. Rothermund describes the new legal position of the farmers as follows: “we may nevertheless conclude from the available evidence that Indian feudalism had the rights of the peasant at its base and that the rights of superior tenureholders were a superstructure built upon this solid foundation, whereas English law took the right of the lord as its point of departure and then constructed its various limitations in terms of rights encroaching on that fundamental right. ”375 Since the British had been dependent on the Zamindars class as an intermediate level since the Permanent Settlement, they provided them off with the full bundle of land ownership rights. This class became the new quasi-landlords376 - and thus corresponded roughly to what the employees of the East India Company knew from their home country377. Contracts under private law now regulated the relationship between the Zamindar and the tenant. However, the Zamindars always threatened to lose their property rights if they did not pay the fixed taxes. In this case, their lands were auctioned. In theory, 3.1.3 373 Kulke and Rothermund (2004), p. 248. 374 On the problem of the western concept of property see also: Congost (2003), pp. 73-106. 375 Rothermund (1978), p. 88. The events of 1857, when a military resistance that had not yet been experienced on this scale briefly questioned British supremacy on the subcontinent, reinforced the insight that the socio-economic The weakness of the rural population is at least a 'security problem'. 376 See also: Robb (2002), p. 127. 377 Metcalf (1995), p. 21. 3. Path dependence and the longevity of the law 120 te this serves to determine the 'true price' of the land - assuming that previously the more customary mode of tax collection had given the Zamindars the freedom to embezzle funds.378 This institutional inefficiency (from the colonial power's point of view) was to be eliminated by the auction mechanism.379 The Zamindars delegated the economic pressure created in this way to the Tenants continued, ultimately burdening them with the burdens and risks of cultivating the land.380 The historian Dharampal considers such a transfer of risk to the shoulders of the tenants, who were always exposed to the risk of their customarily justified entitlement to a share of the land's income lose, as a very problematic transfer of English conditions to South Asia. Just as an English landlord could evict tenants from his land at will, so in India, according to Dharampal, a centuries-old tradition, according to which the management of a property was an inalienable and hereditary right, was broken.381 Not only property, but also the de facto possession was now "at the will of the British-created landlord, or at the whim of the British Indian state" 382. The practice of foreclosing the lands of those Zamindar who were unable to pay their tax debt was of course different from the practice of expropriation for a public purpose as envisaged by the Eminent Domain Doctrine. However, here too the state appeared as the de facto expropriator and redistributor of land. The thinking that ideally land should be left to whoever uses it most productively can be found in the British as well as in the federal and state governments of independent India - especially since the early 1990s. In the area of ​​tension between this productivity-oriented way of thinking and the view that competes with it, which emphasizes the historically grown, economic and identity-related connections between land and individuals and groups, the forerunners of the current debate about land acquisition can be recognized. The colonial state stood for the first 378 See: Mukhopadhyay (2006), Introduction (x). 379 See also: Vollmer (1975), p. 6. 380 Kulke and Rothermund (1998), p. 230. 381 Dharampal (2000), p. 73-74. 382 Ibid., P. 74. 3.1 The colonial legacy 121 named way of thinking by making land a freely tradable commodity. One could say that, in the sense of Karl Polanyi, he operated the “disembedding” of the economy from society.383 Meanwhile, contrary to the hopes of the colonial power, the Zamindars did not turn out to be the “prudent managers of the land” 384, who in invested their lands and increased their productivity. Ultimately, the employees of the East India Company were relatively indifferent to questions about the manner in which agricultural surpluses were produced on the level below the Zamindars, as long as they paid the one-off taxes on time Wars of the East India Company had to be paid for. As Rothermund notes, the British were able to simply continue the already high tax rates with which the previous rulers had financed their defensive struggles against the British.387 In the course of the nineteenth century, however, the relative importance of land taxes declined because other sources of income were more important 388 In addition to the argument that the permanent settlement was the expression of a contemporary economic-political ideology389, the simplicity and cost-effectiveness of the arrangement were probably also a great advantage from the point of view of the East India Company, which always endeavored to keep its administrative expenses low . Because the relationship between the Zamindar and the tenant was now regulated under private law, civil courts had to control it if necessary390, whereby the legal costs generated additional income for the colonial state.391 The Zamindar was of course the stronger party in a contract with the tenant and worked - with both of them Faces of the colonial state, the police and the judiciary, in the back - towards the payment of the rent, if necessary also with force.392 The rent no longer had to be as in 383 Polanyi [2001 (1944)], introduction (xxvii-xxviii ). 384 Chakravorty (2013), p. 79. 385 Rothermund (1994), p. 123. 386 See: Mukhopadhyay (2006), introduction (ix). 387 Rothermund (1994), p. 120. 388 Rothermund (1978), p. 45. 389 Rothermund (1994), p. 120. 390 Kulke and Rothermund (1998), p. 230, 391 Ibid., P. 228. 392 Chakravorty (2013), p. 84. 3. Path dependency and the longevity of the law 122 pre-UK period, but consisted of a fixed amount.393 This innovation placed additional risks on the farmers. Property rights and the Rule of Law meant that the foundations for a land market had been created (Chakravorty speaks of a “proto-land market” 394), but the situation was far removed from informed, autonomous tenants who maximized their own utility and their contractual partners (the Zamindars) met at eye level. If they couldn't pay the taxes they were charged, they had to go to a moneylender to get a loan. This created a new economic class that gained considerable influence over time.395 Soon moneylenders also appeared as major owners themselves, while the problem of indebtedness worsened for the peasants.396 The foundations for information and power asymmetries, as in this one Work is still shown, after independence (and until today) served as an argument for a strong expression of the 'taking and giving state' in relation to the topic of land acquisition, were also created by the land policy of the colonial state. In addition to these socio-economic developments, it was also concrete institutions that can be seen as the legacy of British influence. In addition to the judiciary in the form of the civil courts, the executive branch was represented by the District Collector since 1772, whose area of ​​responsibility grew in the early nineteenth century.397 Metcalf and Metcalf characterize this important actor as follows: “As the name makes clear, the collector's primary function was the collection of taxes. His reputation depended, in large part, on his ability to bring in regularly the full amount of his district’s assessed demand. However, the collector also, as magistrate, controlled the police, and often, as judge, decided cases in court. The hinge figure at the heart of the government, the district collector was responsible to a hierarchy of British bureaucrats above him, and supervised the work of an array of Indian subordinates below. ”398 393 Rothermund (1993), p. 21. 394 Chakravorty (2013), pp. 79. 395 Rothermund (1978), pp. 9. 396 Ibid., Pp. 41. 397 Stokes (1959), pp. 142-144. 398 Metcalf and Metcalf (2006), pp. 59-60.3.1 The colonial legacy 123 The District Collector was established as the fulcrum of the local administration and continues to exist as an institution to this day, albeit with a reduced area of ​​competence.399 Thus it retained considerable, undisputed discretion in the process of expropriating land . First, under the Land Acquisition Act (1894), it was up to the District Collector to determine the public purpose of a project. He also declared the calculation of the compensation payments to be final, provided it was not contested in a civil court. It depended on him in which cases the urgency clause was used. The determination of the time of the expropriation was also within his discretion.400 Apart from the possible control by the civil courts, the old law contains hardly any restrictions on his freedom of action. The Land Acquisition Act of 1894 and its predecessor, the Land Acquisition Act of 1894, is itself the result of a decades-long development of the legalization of executive acts within the framework of a Rule of Law and a territorial as well as material establishment and expansion of the eminent domain competence of the colonial state. The Bengal Regulation Act (I) of 1824 is the first law that allowed the expropriation of immovable property (including land) at a “fair and reasonable” 401 price for “public works and purposes.” 402 As noted, the According to the British interpretation, the rule of law as the ideological pillar of a rule that was initially perceived as somewhat strange even by many Britons, 403 and was intended to represent an alternative to the local understanding of law. The other reason for the legalization of the executive acts, besides this ideological dimension, was that the employees of the East India Company made certain standardized 3.1.4 399 Stokes (1959), pp. 143-144. 400 For the role of the District Collector see: Land Acquisition Act (1894), see online: