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The Collector of Thana Vs. Bal Patel - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtMumbai
Decided On
Judge
Reported in(1878)ILR2Bom110
AppellantThe Collector of Thana
RespondentBal Patel
Excerpt:
.....individual as arbitrator had become infructuous because of his demise held, high court of bombay, is not correct in rejecting arbitration petition filed by appellant on ground of lack of jurisdiction. - ' it is perfectly absurd to suppose that the terms 'village cattle' includes the cattle of any or every roving grazier who may choose to squat for a few months on the public grounds of the village, and to allow his cattle to prey upon the lands set apart for the villagers......is, on the very face of it, preposterous, and on scrutinizing his claim to graze his cattle in the village grazing ground of veluk, we perceive that it is quite as ill-founded as his alleged right so to utilize the grazing commons in the other villages of the district of thana. it is admitted that he is not the owner of a single square foot of ground in the village of veluk, but it appears that he had erected a hut on public ground belonging to that village, where he sojourns for a few months while his cattle are engaged in exhausting the grass set apart for the real villagers. bombay act i of 1865, section 32, enacts that the land, thereby authorized to be set apart for 'free pasturage for the village cattle' and for certain other purposes therein specified, 'shall not be otherwise.....
Judgment:

Michael Westropp, C.J.

1. The plaintiff (respondent) alleges himself to be a Villager of Veluk in the district of Thana, and in virtue thereof by his plaint prays that it may be declared (inter alia), not only that he has a right to graze his cattle within the limits of Mouje Veluk but also within the limits of any other village of the district of Thana. The claim to graze his cattle in villages other than Veluk, is, on the very face of it, preposterous, and on scrutinizing his claim to graze his cattle in the village grazing ground of Veluk, we perceive that it is quite as ill-founded as his alleged right so to utilize the grazing commons in the other villages of the district of Thana. It is admitted that he is not the owner of a single square foot of ground in the village of Veluk, but it appears that he had erected a hut on public ground belonging to that village, where he sojourns for a few months while his cattle are engaged in exhausting the grass set apart for the real villagers. Bombay Act I of 1865, Section 32, enacts that the land, thereby authorized to be set apart for 'free pasturage for the village cattle' and for certain other purposes therein specified, 'shall not be otherwise appropriated or assigned without the sanction of the Revenue Commissioner.' It is perfectly absurd to suppose that the terms 'village cattle' includes the cattle of any or every roving grazier who may choose to squat for a few months on the public grounds of the village, and to allow his cattle to prey upon the lands set apart for the villagers. And the Act does not vest the right of sanctioning such a diversion of the village grazing ground in the villagers themselves, but in the Revenue Commissioner, whose assent it is not pretended has been obtained by the plaintiff. So far from condemning the Collector for his intervention, we think that his conduct was praiseworthy in putting an end to such an abuse as appears to have grown up in his collectorate, and in insisting upon the preservation of the village grazing grounds and the Government forests for the purposes for which they are properly reserved. We deem the suit of the plaintiff to be characterized by no ordinary effrontery, and we reverse the decrees of the Courts below with costs of suit and both appeals, which must be paid by the plaintiff to the defendant.


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