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The Talukdari Settlement Officer Vs. Umiashankar Narsiram Pandya - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtMumbai
Decided On
Case Number First Appeal No. 120 of 1909
Judge
Reported in(1910)12BOMLR837
AppellantThe Talukdari Settlement Officer
RespondentUmiashankar Narsiram Pandya
Excerpt:
.....under decree of the civil court.;the powers given to the collector by section 79a of the land revenue code, 1879, can be exercised only in cases of wrongful possession. it does not extend to cases where possession is obtained under the decree of a civil court. the collector has, for the exercise of the power, to form his own opinion and decide whether in any particular case the possession is wrongful; but there is no provision in the code which gives finality to the collector's order of eviction so as to exclude the jurisdiction of a civil court to decide that the person evicted by that order was in rightful occupation. - - i think that the talukdari settlement officer was singularly ill-advised in acting as he did and i think that the injunction given by the court below is..........whether in any particular case the possession is wrongful, there is no provision in either the land revenue code (bom. act v of 1879) or the gujarat talukdars act (bom. act vi of 1888) which gives finality to the collector's order of eviction so as to exclude the jurisdiction of a civil court to decide that the person evicted by that order was in rightful occupation. in the present case the respondent was put into possession by a competent court of law after an adjudication that as against the talukdar he (the respondent) was entitled to the land in dispute. if that adjudication and the lawful possession had in consequence of it bound the talukdar as res judicata; it is not open to any authority, in the absence of any express provision of law, to set aside the adjudication of a.....
Judgment:

N.G. Chandavarkar, Kt., J.

1. Section 79A of the Land Revenue Code, as amended by Act VI of 1888 (the Gujarat Talukdars Act), confers on the Collector the power to evict summarily any person who is found in ' wrongful possession ' of a taluk-dari land or estate. It is only in cases of wrongful possession that the power can be exercised, and, though for the exercise of the power the Collector has to form his own opinion and decide whether in any particular case the possession is wrongful, there is no provision in either the Land Revenue Code (Bom. Act V of 1879) or the Gujarat Talukdars Act (Bom. Act VI of 1888) which gives finality to the Collector's order of eviction so as to exclude the jurisdiction of a Civil Court to decide that the person evicted by that order was in rightful occupation. In the present case the respondent was put into possession by a competent Court of law after an adjudication that as against the Talukdar he (the respondent) was entitled to the land in dispute. If that adjudication and the lawful possession had in consequence of it bound the Talukdar as res judicata; it is not open to any authority, in the absence of any express provision of law, to set aside the adjudication of a competent Court as a nullity and as not binding him, merely because Section 79A empowers him to evict a person ' in wrongful possession '. The possession here was not wrongful; and on that ground I am of opinion that the decree in appeal ought to be confirmed with costs.

Heaton, J.

2. Under cover of Section 79A of the Land Revenue Code (Bom. Act V of 1879) the Talukdari Settlement Officer has assumed to himself the power to decide a point which had already been decided by a Court of competent jurisdiction; and further he has assumed to himself the power to decide that what the Court had declared to be right was wrong. The precise point he decided was whether the Talukdar or his vendor was entitled to possession of the particular land in suit. That was the identical point which had been decided by the Court. Section 79 A of the Land Revenue Code contemplates a reasonable ground for proceeding on the part of the Collector before he summarily evicts under the section. In this case there was not a reasonable ground for proceeding. It is not reasonable, under our system of administering justice, for an executive officer to set at naught the decision of a competent Court and to act directly contrary to it, in a matter solely affecting the rights of the parties whose dispute had been determined by the Court. I think that the Talukdari Settlement Officer was singularly ill-advised in acting as he did and I think that the injunction given by the Court below is perfectly correct and must be confirmed with costs. Decree confirmed.


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