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Shital Singh Vs. State of U.P. and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtAllahabad High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Misc. Writ No. 9690 of 1975
Judge
Reported inAIR1978All253
ActsConstitution of India - Article 226; Uttar Pradesh Imposition of Ceiling on Land Holdings Act, 1961 - Sections 4A, 12 and 13
AppellantShital Singh
RespondentState of U.P. and ors.
Appellant AdvocateBrij Bhusan Paul, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateStanding Counsel
DispositionPetition allowed
Excerpt:
.....act, 1961 - appeal under section 13 against order of prescribed authority in court of additional civil judge (acj) - findings by acj that consideration in disputed sale deed is inadequate and there was no genuine need for sale - sale rightly held to be not made in good faith by acj - order of prescribed authority or acj recording findings of fact unsupported by proper evidence liable to be quashed even though such findings does not suffer from any error of law. (ii) prescribed authority - section 4-a of u.p. imposition of ceiling on land holdings act, 1961 ( prescribed authority duty bound to make proper estimate of irrigated area to set the statement of ceiling area under section 4-a - he cannot turn a blind eye to objections of citizens filed before him in proceedings under the act...........prescribed authority koil, district aligarh, and that dated july 30, 1975 of the 1st additional civil judge, aligarh, on appeal therefrom under the u. p. imposition of ceiling on land holdings act, 1960. three points were urged before the learned additional civil judge. the first point related to a sale deed dated october 27, 1971 in respect of 9 bighas of land out of plot no. 262 sold by the petitioner to smt. veervati and others for a consideration of rs. 8,000 only. the next point related to plot no. 262 in respect of which it was contended that it was unirrigated but had wrongly been taken to be irrigated. the last point related to plot no. 104 which was said to be a grove.2. mr. b. b. paul, learned counsel for the petitioner urged before me that the order of the prescribed.....
Judgment:
ORDER

Deoki Nandan, J.

1. This writ petition arises from an order dated November 23, 1974 of the Prescribed Authority Koil, District Aligarh, and that dated July 30, 1975 of the 1st Additional Civil Judge, Aligarh, on appeal therefrom under the U. P. Imposition of Ceiling on Land Holdings Act, 1960. Three points were urged before the learned Additional Civil Judge. The first point related to a sale deed dated October 27, 1971 in respect of 9 bighas of land out of plot No. 262 sold by the petitioner to Smt. Veervati and others for a consideration of Rs. 8,000 only. The next point related to plot No. 262 in respect of which it was contended that it was unirrigated but had wrongly been taken to be irrigated. The last point related to Plot No. 104 which was said to be a grove.

2. Mr. B. B. Paul, learned counsel for the petitioner urged before me that the order of the Prescribed Authority was bad for it contained no reasons for the findings recorded by him and that theorder of the learned Additional Civil Judge was no better.

3. With regard to the first point about the sale deed, the Prescribed Authority only observed that the transfer was made after January 24, 1971 and the learned Additional Civil Judge has only said that he was unable to accept the petitioner's contention that the transfer was made in good faith and for adequate consideration, for the reason that it was made after January 24, 1971 and that the consideration was on its face, inadequate and there was no convincing evidence to the effect that there was any genuine need to sell the land. The learned Additional Civil Judge has, thus, recorded the necessary findings, namely, that the sale was not made in good faith and the consideration was inadequate but the learned counsel attacked the finding as vitiated in law on the ground that the learned Civil Judge did not consider the evidence on the record.

Except for the contentions raised by the petitioner that the sale deed was executed in good faith and for adequate consideration under an irrevocable instrument of transfer as he needed money for the marriage of his granddaughter which was solemnised in October, 1971, the precise evidence which is said to have been ignored by the learned Additional Civil Judge has not been pointed out or set out in the writ petition. The learned Additional Civil Judge has observed that there was no convincing evidence in support of the need to sell the land and with regard to the adequacy of consideration he has observed that the amount of Rs. 8,000 was on its face inadequate for 27 kachcha bighas of land Under the circumstances, I am unable to find on the face of the record any error of law or of jurisdiction, such as to vitiate the finding of the learned Additional Civil Judge on this point.

4. With regard to the next point about the remaining area of Plot No. 262 being unirrigated, the point does not appear to have been considered by the Prescribed Authority. The learned Additional Civil Judge has, however, observed on this point that the khasras for 1377F, 1378F and 1380F show that the plot was irrigated from a canal and both Kharif and Rabi crops were produced in the plot, hence, it was rightly treated as irrigated by the Prescribed Authority. The learned counsel contended that theplot was in the bed of a river and the revenue entries were prima facie wrongand that his prayer for local inspection was refused. The determination of irrigated area of the land has to be made in accordance with Section 4-A of the Act. That section makes the khasras of 1378F, 1379F and 1380F relevant for purposes of determining the irrigated area and also enjoins upon the Prescribed Authority to make a local inspection wherever necessary. How the Prescribed Authority is supposed to prepare the statement of ceiling area after determination of the irrigated area in accordance with the principles and procedure laid down by Section 4-A of the Act.

This does not appear to have been dona and when the petitioner contended that the whole of the area of Plot No. 262 was unirrigated, no attempt was made by the Prescribed Authority to go into that objection or to determine it on the basis of the considerations made relevant by Section 4-A of the Act. The learned Additional Civil Judge has also not mentioned the khasra of 1579 Fasli probably because it was not on the record and has mentioned the khasra of 1377 fasli. With regard to the refusal of the prayer for local inspection, all that has been said on behalf of the Prescribed Authority in the counter-affidavit of Sri Brij Kishore Misra, the Supervisor Kanoongo, is that it was not necessary to be made unless the Prescribed Authority considered the case to be a fit one.

Under the circumstances, I am not satisfied that the question whether Plot No. 262 was unirrigated, has been dealt with properly and in accordance with law. If the entries in the revenue records are challenged by a citizen in proceedings under the Act, and a Statute provides for a procedure for determination of the irrigated area, the prescribed procedure has to be followed The petitioner had challenged the correctness of the entries in the revenue records with regard to Plot No. 262, The Prescribed Authority did not even care to look into the relevant khasras and his refusal to make a local inspection was in the circumstances of the case no less arbitrary.

5. With regard to the last point about plot No. 104 being a grove, all that the Prescribed Authority has observed in this connection is that there is no documentary evidence that there was grove in this plot in the relevant years.

The learned Additional Civil Judge found that there was a grove in an areaof one bigha of land of the said plot and held the petitioner entitled to relief accordingly but added that the difference was so minor that the whole appeal merited dismissal. It is clear that the Prescribed Authority refused to look into the relevant khasras for verifying whether there was grove on any part of Plot No. 104, for, the finding of the learned Additional Civil Judge that there was grove on one bigha out of this plot is based on a perusal of the khasras for 1377, 1378 and 1380 fasli. This kind of an attitude of turning a blind eye to the objections of citizens filed before the Prescribed Authorities in proceedings under the Act is to be regretted. It is the duty of the Prescribed Authority to verify the correctness of the objections by reference to the revenue records, whether they are filed by an objector or not, for the statements prepared by them are supposed to have been prepared on the basis of revenue records and the other considerations prescribed under the Act, and must therefore be available with them.

6. In the result, the writ petition is entitled to succeed and the orders of the Prescribed Authority and the Additional Civil Judge are liable to be quashed. As the orders are wholly unsatisfactory and it has not been possible to find out what evidence was led by the petitioner on the first point about the adequacy of consideration for the sale deed and its having been made in good faith, it is expedient in the interest of justice that the two orders should be quashed on this point also although on the face of the record made available in this court, it cannot be said that the findings suffer from any error of law, inasmuch as, the orders are being quashed in respect of other points. It will be open to the petitioner to lead such evidence as may be necessary and legally permissible in support of his objections on all the points.

7. In the result, the writ petition succeeds and is allowed. The two orders of the Prescribed Authority and the Additional Civil Judge are quashed. The petitioner will be entitled to his costs. The amounts, if any, deposited by the petitioner under the Interim order dated 3rd September, 1975 shall be refunded to him.


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