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Murigayya Gurubasayya Muttinamath (Deceased) by L.Rs Vs. the Land Tribunal and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtKarnataka High Court
Decided On
Case NumberLand Reforms Revision Petition No. 2939 of 1989
Judge
Reported in2006(5)KarLJ475
ActsKarnataka Land Reforms Act, 1961 - Sections 24; Karnataka Land Revenue Act, 1964 - Sections 34; Karnataka Land Reforms Rules, 1974 - Rule 17
AppellantMurigayya Gurubasayya Muttinamath (Deceased) by L.Rs
RespondentThe Land Tribunal and ors.
Appellant AdvocateF.V. Patil, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateA.R. Sharadamba, High Court Government Pleader for Respondents-1 and 2 and ;S.B. Hebballi, Adv. for Respondent-3
Excerpt:
.....himself and one sri shivappa hanamantha kolla, who have clearly stated that, the said entries have been entered by oversight and further they have also given statement before the said tahsildar that, they have not filed any application for grant of occupancy rights in respect of the land in question before the tribunal. the appellate authority has failed to appreciate the other documents produced by petitioners which are marked as ex. 6. having regard to the facts and circumstances of the case, as stated above, and taking into consideration the totality of the case on hand, i do not find any justification or good ground to sustain the orders passed by both the authorities......revision petition is directed against the order dated 17th march, 1989 passed by the additional land reforms appellate authority, bagalkot in l.r.a. (tr)no. 53 of 1987, setting-aside the order passed by the land tribunal, badami, dated 3rd december, 1981 in no. klr.t.s.r. 2488.2. the third respondent herein-sri yellappa neelappa bharamagoudra, claiming to be a tenant in respect of land in sy. no. 60/1+2, measuring 16 acres 39 guntas situate at gangana budihal village, badami taluk, bijapur district is alleged to have filed form 7 for grant of occupancy rights before the first respondent-land tribunal, badami on 15th march, 1989. the said application filed by third respondent-applicant had come up for consideration before first respondent-land tribunal, badami on 3rd december, 1981 in.....
Judgment:
ORDER

N.K. Patil, J.

1. The instant land reforms revision petition is directed against the order dated 17th March, 1989 passed by the Additional Land Reforms Appellate Authority, Bagalkot in L.R.A. (TR)No. 53 of 1987, setting-aside the order passed by the Land Tribunal, Badami, dated 3rd December, 1981 in No. KLR.T.S.R. 2488.

2. The third respondent herein-Sri Yellappa Neelappa Bharamagoudra, claiming to be a tenant in respect of land in Sy. No. 60/1+2, measuring 16 acres 39 guntas situate at Gangana Budihal Village, Badami Taluk, Bijapur District is alleged to have filed Form 7 for grant of occupancy rights before the first respondent-Land Tribunal, Badami on 15th March, 1989. The said application filed by third respondent-applicant had come up for consideration before first respondent-Land Tribunal, Badami on 3rd December, 1981 in KLR.T.SR.2488. The Land Tribunal, after evaluation of oral and documentary evidence, and on the basis of the admission stated to have been made by third respondent himself, to the effect that, he is not cultivating the said land as tenant, has passed the order, rejecting the application filed by third respondent-applicant in Form 7. Being aggrieved by the said order passed by the first respondent-Land Tribunal, Badami on 3rd December, 1981, the third respondent herein had filed Writ Petition No. 13050 of 1982 before this Court. When the said writ petition was pending adjudication before this Court, the writ petition stood transferred to the Land Reforms Appellate Authority, Bagalkot, by its order dated 16th July, 1986 in view of the amendment brought to the Karnataka Land Reforms Act, 1961. Thereafter, the said transferred matter was renumbered as L.R.A. (TR)53 of 1987 on the file of the Additional Land Reforms Appellate Authority, Bagalkot. The Land Reforms Appellate Authority, Bagalkot, after appreciation of the oral and documentary evidence available on record, has allowed the appeal filed by third respondent and set aside the order passed by Land Tribunal, Badami, by its order dated 17th March, 1989. Being aggrieved by the impugned order passed by Land Reforms Appellate Authority, Bagalkot, petitioner, now represented by his legal representatives felt necessitated to present the instant revision petition before this Court.

3. I have heard learned Counsel appearing for petitioners and learned Counsel appearing for respondents for considerable length of time on 25th August, 2005 and today. After thorough evaluation of the entire original records available on file, namely the records on the file of the Land Tribunal, Badami, original records on the file of the Land Reforms Appellate Authority, Bagalkot, after evaluation of the other material available on record and after going through the order passed by both the authorities, it emerges on the face of the order passed by Land Reforms Appellate Authority, Bagalkot that, the said authority has committed an error, much less irregularity in allowing the appeal filed by third respondent, and setting aside the order passed by Land Tribunal, Badami. Both the authorities have failed to take into consideration the root cause of the subject-matter involved in the instant case. It is significant to note that, there is a revenue proceedings initiated by petitioner claiming to be the owner of land in question before the Tahsildar, who is the jurisdictional authority to consider regarding the entries found in the RTC. The Tahsildar, by his order dated 14th July, 1977 bearing No. TNC.MISC/77 has himself passed the order holding that, the entry found in the RTC extracts for the agricultural years 1964-65 to 1971-72 is not sustainable in view of the statement made by third respondent himself and one Sri Shivappa Hanamantha Kolla, who have clearly stated that, the said entries have been entered by oversight and further they have also given statement before the said Tahsildar that, they have not filed any application for grant of occupancy rights in respect of the land in question before the Tribunal. The statement made by them as referred by Tahsildar in his order dated 14th July, 1977 reads thus:

4. In pursuance of the application filed by third respondent for grant of occupancy rights, claiming to be karta of the family of late Neelappa Basappa Goudar, the third respondent herein has appeared before the Tribunal and given his statement. The same was recorded by the Chairman of the Land Tribunal, Badami on 19th September, 1981. In the said statement, he has stated that, his father had been cultivating the land in question and after the death of his father, he has continued the cultivation and has discontinued the cultivation since two years back. However, he has requested to consider his claim for grant of occupancy rights. Further, the entry found in the RTC, which is available in the original records of the Land Tribunal at ink page 131, indicates that, for the agricultural years 1964-65 to 1971-72, the name of one Sri Baramagoudra Neelappa has been notified in the cultivators column and in Kabzedar's column (9), petitioner's father's name has been shown. From 1972-73 to 1975-76, in cultivator's column (12), the name notified is 'self and columns (1) and (11) are left blank. The Land Tribunal, after conducting enquiry as envisaged under Rule 17 of the Karnataka Land Reforms Rules, 1974 ('Rules' for short) read with Section 34 of the Karnataka Land Revenue Act, 1964 ('Act' for short), in pursuance of the admission made by third respondent and the entries found in the RTC extracts, has passed the order, referred above, rejecting the application filed by third respondent. Being aggrieved by the said order, passed by Land Tribunal, the third respondent has filed the writ petition before this Court and the same was transferred to the Land Reforms Appellate Authority, Bagalkot (for short, 'Appellate Authority') and the Appellate Authority, after evaluation of oral and documentary evidence and other material available on file, has allowed the appeal and set aside the order passed by Land Tribunal, holding that, the name of deceased father of third respondent is shown in the RTC upto 1971-1972 and thereafter wards, in cultivators column, from the years 1972-73 to 1975-76, it is shown as self and the tenancy of the deceased father of third respondent has been continued and that is the relevant period for consideration. The mode of cultivation is shown as '3' which indicates tenancy. The Appellate Authority has failed to appreciate the other documents produced by petitioners which are marked as Ex. R. 1-Death Certificate of Sri Neelappa, who is reported to be dead on 1st December, 1966 Ex. R. 2-the mutation entry has been certified on the basis of the application filed by third respondent. After the death of Gurubasayya the father of the petitioner, mutation has been certified on 2nd September, 1968 in favour of the legal representatives of deceased Neelappa Bhimappa Goudra, i.e., the third respondent and other brothers, namely Bheemappa, Ramanna, Laxmappa and Hananthappa in respect of the lands held by them in their personal capacity and not as tenanted lands and Ex. R. 3 indicates that, after the death of Gurubasayya, the name in mutation has been certified in favour of petitioner. Ex. R. 4 is the document to show that, the petitioner has availed the loan from the society and in Ex. R. 5-RTC, the name of father of petitioner is shown from the agricultural years 1953-54 to 1963-64 and Ex. R. 6 is the order passed by Tahsildar, dated 14th July, 1977, regarding the revenue proceedings as stated in the preceding paragraph. This aspect of the matter has not been rightly appreciated by Appellate Authority and proceeded to hold that, the land in question has been vested in the Government as on 1st March, 1974 and the third respondent has substantiated the claim as tenant and therefore, he is entitled for registration of occupancy rights.

5. After microscopic evaluation of the original records on the file of first respondent-Land Tribunal, Badami, it is seen that, in the original application Form 7, alleged to have been filed by third respondent on 15th March, 1979, he has signed as Tellappa Neelappa Barama Goudra', which is very much available in the original records at read ink page 123 and the signature is found at ink page 124. But, when the matter was posted and evidence given by third respondent, referred above was recorded by Chairman of the Land Tribunal, in the order sheet of the Land Tribunal and also in the evidence given before the Appellate Authority, he has signed as 'Y.N. Barama Goudra'. Thus in these two documents, he has put his signature by putting initials, i.e., 'Y.N. Barama Goudra' and in the application for grant of occupancy rights in Form 7, he has written his full name, i.e., Yellappa Neelappa Barama Goudra'. These vital documentary material available on file have been overlooked by both the authorities and the manner in which the authorities have proceeded and passed the order shows that, they have proceeded without proper application of mind. From the order passed by Tahsildar in 1977 in the revenue proceedings, it reveals that, the third respondent, in unequivocal terms, has stated that, he is not claiming this land as tenant and by mistake, his father's name has been entered for the agricultural years 1964-65 to 1971-72. Thereafter wards, it can be seen that, the said entry has been set aside as on the date of considering the claim of third respondent. Both the authorities ought to have taken into consideration this aspect of the matter. On the contrary, the Appellate Authority has referred to Section 24 of the Land Reforms Act, and came to the conclusion that, the legal representatives of deceased tenant continued to be tenant in possession. The Appellate Authority ought not to have proceeded and passed the order giving such a finding contrary to the material on record. If the Appellate Authority had verified carefully, it ought not to have proceeded and passed the impugned order. Therefore, on this ground alone, the impugned orders passed by both authorities are liable to vitiate and it requires redoing of enquiry afresh in strict compliance of the mandatory provisions of the Act and Rules. This Court is not inclined to remand the matter for reconsideration afresh but for the reason that, the signature in the application filed for claiming occupancy rights is not tallying with the signature made by third respondent in the instant proceedings in the vakalat signed by third respondent. Therefore, the matter has to be gone into in detail and the signature of third respondent should be verified with his signature in the original register maintained by the Land Tribunal, wherein, there will be entry at the time of filing the application by parties. Therefore, the Land Tribunal shall take a final decision, after careful evaluation of oral and documentary evidence and after conducting enquiry as envisaged under the mandatory provisions of the Act and Rules.

6. Having regard to the facts and circumstances of the case, as stated above, and taking into consideration the totality of the case on hand, I do not find any justification or good ground to sustain the orders passed by both the authorities.

7. Having regard to the facts and circumstances of the case, as stated above, the instant revision petition filed by petitioners stands disposed of with the following directions:

(i) The revision petition filed by petitioners is allowed;

(ii) The impugned order passed by the Land Tribunal, Badami in Case No. KLR.T.SR. 2488, dated 3rd December, 1981 and the order passed by the Additional Land Reforms Appellate Authority, Bagalkot, dated 17th March, 1989 in L.R.A.(TR)No. 53 of 1987 are hereby set aside and the matter stands remitted back to first respondent-Land Tribunal, Badami for reconsideration of the matter afresh in accordance with law;

(iii) The Land Tribunal is directed to verify the authenticity or otherwise of the Form 7 alleged to have been filed by third respondent and after verification, if it is found that, Form 7 and the signature of third respondent are genuine, the Tribunal shall take appropriate decision in accordance with law;

(iv) Further, the Land Tribunal, Badami, is directed to conduct enquiry in strict compliance of Rule 17 of the Land Reforms Rules, read with Section 34 of the Land Revenue Act and to proceed with the matter, after affording an opportunity to petitioner, represented by his legal representatives and third respondent as expeditiously as possible.

8. With these observations, the revision petition filed by petitioners succeeds and stands disposed of.

9. Office is directed to return the entire original records to the Land Tribunal, Badami forthwith.


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