Maximum irrigation area
16A. (1) When the possession of any tank has been taken under section 5 or section 6 the Collector shall determine in the prescribed manner the maximum area of land to the limits of which irrigation from the said tank may practicably be extended (hereinafter referred to as the maximum irrigation area) and the Collector shall publish a notice in the prescribed form and manner defining the limits of the maximum irrigation area so determined.
(2) Every person possessing agricultural land within the maximum irrigation area shall, subject to the provisions of sub-sections (3) and (4), be liable to pay a fee annually during the period of possession to the authorised person at the rate fixed and in the manner provided under section 17 and such liability shall not cease either by reason of such person not using water for irrigation purposes from the tank to which the maximum irrigation area relates or by reason of permission to use such water being refused under sub-section (2) of section 16B.
(3) Any person concerned may, within thirty days of the date of the publishing of the notice referred to in sub-section (1), apply in the prescribed form and manner and on payment of the prescribed fee to the Collector for-
(a) including any land within the maximum irrigation area,
(b) excluding any land from the maximum irrigation area, and
(c) exempting any land or part of any land from liability to pay the fees referred to in sub-section (2) on the ground that such land cannot practicably be irrigated from the tank to which the maximum irrigation area relates, or cannot be benefited by such irrigation or that such land is not agricultural land,
and the Collector after giving the applicant a reasonable opportunity of being heard may pass such order as to such inclusion, exclusion or exemption as he thinks fit.
(4) The Collector may, of his own motion at any time after the expiry of thirty days from the date of publishing of the notice referred to in sub-section (1), include within the maximum irrigation area any land which was not agricultural land at the time of publication of such notice but has subsequently
been converted into agricultural land, or otherwise revise the limits of the maximum irrigation area or exempt any land or part of any land within such maximum irrigation area from liability to pay the fees referred to in sub-section (2) and the Collector shall modify the list referred to in sub-section (1) of section 16B accordingly:
Provided that before any order for such inclusion, revision or exemption is passed all persons concerned shall be given a reasonable opportunity of making any representation which they may like to make and the Collector shall consider such representation.