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Rama Rau Mang @ Awale (Deceased by Heirs Smt. Manjula Rama Mang @ Awale, Dagadu Rama Mang @ Awale, Jotiram Rama Mang @ Awale, Shivaji Rama Mang @ Awale, Pandurang Rama Mang @ Awale, Suresh Rama Mang @ Awale, Rangrao Rama Mang @ Awale, Ajit Rama Mang @ Awale, Akkatai Ashok Ghatage and Prakash Rama Mang @ Awale) and Dadu Daulu Mang @ Awale Vs. Pandurang Ganpati Ghatage (Since Deceased by His Heirs Smt. Akatai W/O Pandurang Ghatage, Shri Balasaheb Pandurang Ghatage, Shri Deelip Pandurang Ghatage an - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtMumbai High Court
Decided On
Case NumberWrit Petition No. 2689 of 1984
Judge
Reported in2005(1)BomCR319; 2005(1)MhLj977
ActsConstitution of India - Article 227; Bombay Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act, 1948 - Sections 43B
AppellantRama Rau Mang @ Awale (Deceased by Heirs Smt. Manjula Rama Mang @ Awale, Dagadu Rama Mang @ Awale, J
RespondentPandurang Ganpati Ghatage (Since Deceased by His Heirs Smt. Akatai W/O Pandurang Ghatage, Shri Balas
Appellant AdvocateN.J. Patil, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateP.P. Chavan, Adv.
DispositionPetition dismissed
Excerpt:
.....reliable evidence has been adduced before the authority about the yield derived from the suit lands. the authority had no option but to apply principle of average yield notification. the only omission committed by the first authority was not clearly specifying as to the category to which the suit lands belong. that omission has now been corrected by the appellate authority on analysing the materials on record. the appellate authority has rightly taken into account the assessment amount indicated in the 7/12 extract to decide upon the factum as to the landfalls under which category, whether under class i, ii or class iii. going by the high assessment amount in respect of the suit lands, no fault can be found with the appellate authority in concluding that the suit land fell..........application was filed by the landlords herein for fixation of reasonable rent in respect of the suit land under section 43b of the act. the tahsildar, karveer, by judgment and order dated july 26, 1978 disposed of the said application by determining the reasonable rent in respect of the suit land at rs. 6,590/- (rupees six thousand five hundred ninety) from the year 1975-76. the principle applied by the first authority is one of average yield notification, as it found that no reliable evidence was produced by the parties to adopt any other method. this decision was questioned by the petitioners/tenants in appeal before the sub-divisional officer, which was, however, allowed by judgment and order dated july 26, 1979. the appellate authority observed that the application of average to.....
Judgment:

A.M. Khanwilkar, J.

1. This Petition under Article 227 of the Constitution of India takes exception to the judgments and Orders passed by the Maharashtra Revenue Tribunal, Kolhapur dated January 28, 1981 in Revision Application No. MRT.KP.301/79 and June 16, 1984 in Revision Application Nos. MRT-KP-3/1984 and MRT-KP-4/1984. The land in question is Survey No. 1410/A of Village Karveer in Karveer Tahsil of Kolhapur District admeasuring 8 acres 21 gunthas. The total area of the land bearing said Survey number was 9 acres 38 gunthas, but in the present Petition, we are concerned only with land admeasuring 8 acres 21 gunthas owned by the Respondents herein. it is not in dispute that the said land was used for sugar-cane cultivation and is therefore covered by the special provisions of the Bombay Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act, 1948 (hereinafter referred to as the 'Act'). Application was filed by the landlords herein for fixation of reasonable rent in respect of the suit land under Section 43B of the Act. The Tahsildar, Karveer, by Judgment and Order dated July 26, 1978 disposed of the said application by determining the reasonable rent in respect of the suit land at Rs. 6,590/- (Rupees Six Thousand Five Hundred Ninety) from the year 1975-76. The principle applied by the First Authority is one of Average Yield Notification, as it found that no reliable evidence was produced by the parties to adopt any other method. This decision was questioned by the Petitioners/Tenants in appeal before the Sub-Divisional Officer, which was, however, allowed by judgment and Order dated July 26, 1979. The Appellate Authority observed that the application of Average to the Appellate Authority, the parties ought to have been given further opportunity to lead evidence about the yield of the suit lands. Accordingly, the Appellate Authority set-aside the order passed by the First Authority and remanded the matter to the First Authority for fresh consideration after giving opportunity to the parties to adduce evidence. This decision was questioned both by the Petitioners/tenants as well as by the Respondents/landlords by way of separate Revision Applications. Both the Revision Applications have been allowed by the Tribunal by the impugned Judgment and Order and the matter has instead been remanded to the Appellate Authority for re-examination on the question as to whether the suit land would fall under Class I, II or Class III category, before deciding upon the final amount as reasonable rent. The Tribunal has observed that the Appellate Authority committed manifest error in taking the view that the parties should be given opportunity to adduce further evidence, especially when no grievance was made by any party that the proceedings concluded by the First Authority were without giving proper opportunity to the parties. The Revisional Authority found that in such a case, the question of relegating the parties for further evidence does not arise, as the Court cannot take upon itself that the evidence as adduced, is inadequate and should be supplemented by further evidence. Accordingly, that view expressed by the Appellate Authority has been set-aside. However, the Tribunal accepted the argument canvassed on behalf of the Petitioners/tenants that the First Authority has failed to examine as to suit land falls under which category or class of land, whether Class I, II or Class III category before deciding upon the reasonable rent. For that purpose, the Tribunal remanded the matter before the Appellate Authority.

2. Pursuant to the remand order passed by the Tribunal dated January 28, 1981 the matter was examined by the Appellate Authority. The Appellate Authority found, as of fact, that sugar-cane crop is being raised in an area of 5 acres and 20 gunthas out of the suit land admeasuring 9 acres 38 gunthas. It then proceeded to analyse the matter in the context of the assessment amount shown in the 7/12 extract as Rs. 50.37. From that, it was clear that the assessment per acre of the suit land came to more than Rs. 5,000/- (Rupees Five Thousand). The Appellate Authority found that if the assessment was more than Rs. 5,000/- (Rupees Five Thousand) per acre, the land will fall in the category of Class I. After reaching that conclusion, the Appellate Authority then affirmed the view taken by the First Authority, wherein, the Authority had applied the principle of Average Yield Notification while determining the reasonable rent in respect of the suit lands. The Appellate Authority found that the amount arrived at by the First Authority as reasonable rent in respect of the suit land was appropriate. Accordingly, the Appeals preferred by the tenants came to be dismissed. Against that decision, tenants came to be dismissed. Against that decision, tenants carried the matter in Revision before the Maharashtra Revenue Tribunal being Revision No. MRT-KP-3/1984 and MRT-KP-4/1984. The Tribunal, after examining materials on record and considering the submissions, proceeded to affirm the view taken by the two Authorities below and therefore, rejected the Revision Application. It is against those concurrent decisions, present Writ Petition has been filed before this Court. Mr. Patil for the Petitioners/tenants contents that the reasonable rent determined by the Authorities below in respect of the suit lands is inappropriate. he submits that in absence of proper evidence adduced by the landlords, it was not open for the Tenancy Authority to apply the principle of Average Yield Notification. He submits that even the amount determined by applying that ratio, is incorrect as well as the classification done by the Appellate Authority on the basis of the assessment amount indicated in the 7/12 extract, cannot be sustained. On the other hand, Counsel for the Respondents/landlords submits that there is no substance in this Petition which is directed against the concurrent finding of fact recorded by the three authorities below. He has, in substance, supported the decisions passed by the three Authorities below.

3. Having considered the rival submissions, I find no substance in the grievance advanced on behalf of the Petitioners that the Tenancy Authority could not have proceeded to apply the ratio of Average Yield Notification as has been done in the present case. In the present case, the Tenancy Authority, in the first place, recorded the finding that no reliable evidence has been adduced before the Authority about the yield derived from the suit lands. Having said so, the Authority had no option but to apply principle of Average Yield Notification. The only omission committed by the First Authority was not clearly specifying as to the category to which the suit lands belong. That omission has now been corrected by the Appellate Authority on analyzing the materials on record. The Appellate Authority has rightly taken into account the assessment amount indicated in the 7/12 extract to decide upon the factum as to the land falls under which category, whether under Class I, II or Class III. Going by the high assessment amount in respect of the suit lands, no fault can be found with the Appellate Authority in concluding that the suit land fell within Class I category. In the Circumstances, the Appellate Authority was justified in affirming the conclusion reached by the First Authority in deciding the reasonable rent in respect of the suit land as Rs. 6,590/- (Rupees Six Thousand Five Hundred Ninety). To my mind, no fault can be found with the Tribunal in rejecting the Revision Application because the Tribunal was bound by the finding of fact recorded by the fact finding authorities. In fact, the matter having been remanded by the Revisional Authority on the earlier occasion only to examine the limited issue, it was not open to the Petitioners to re-open other aspects. The only enquiry expected of the Appellate Authority was to find out as to in which category the suit land would fall, whether under Class I, II or Class III. The finding reached by the Appellate Authority in that behalf is unexceptionable. Accordingly, I see no reason to interfere in this Writ Petition and none of the arguments canvassed on behalf of the Petitioners can be accepted for the reasons already indicated above. Accordingly, this Petition should fail and the same is dismissed with no order as to costs. Rule stands discharged.

4. At this stage, Mr. Patil for the Petitioners submits that the Petitioners were unable to pay the rent as the issue regarding reasonable rent was pending in this Court and also because the Respondents did not accept the rent, which was offered by the Petitioners. However, it is not necessary for me to go into this controversy because the only issue that needs to be addressed in the present Petition is about the appropriateness of the amount of the reasonable rent determined by the Authorities below. The other questions are left open to be decided in appropriate proceedings, which are stated to be pending in appeal.

5. Issuance of certified copy is expedited.


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