DOCTRINE OF EMINENT DOMAIN AND RESTRICTIONS ON THE POWER OF GOVERNMENT TO TAKE PRIVATE PROPERTY
Eminent domain is the power of the government to take private property when it is needed for a public purpose. Such power is an incident of sovereignty. It is an offspring of political necessity. It is often necessary for the proper performance of governmental functions to take private property for public use. If public purpose can be satisfied by not rendering common man homeless and by exploring other avenues of acquisition, the Courts, before sanctioning an acquisition, must in exercise of its power of judicial review, focus its attention on the concept of social and economic justice. While examining these questions of public importance, the Courts, especially the Higher Courts, cannot afford to act as mere umpires.