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Mohan Lal Vs. Sohan Lal Bahl and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtDelhi High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCase No. 128 of 1984
Judge
Reported in27(1985)DLT208
ActsPunjab Land Revenue Act, 1887 - Sections 16
AppellantMohan Lal
RespondentSohan Lal Bahl and ors.
Advocates: O.P. Tyagi and; Mattipal Singh, Advs
Excerpt:
- .....shri mohan lal son of shri ishar dass has come in a petition under-section 13/16 of the punjab land revenue act, against the order, dated 24-2-1984 passed by shri l.d. gupta, additional collector in case no. 253 of 1983 whereby his appeal against the order of tehsildar passed on 12-10-1983 in case no. 210/cg/82 was rejected. (2) the petitioner claims that an application for correction of khasra girdawari was filed by shri c.l. nijhawan who claims himself as attorney of respondent no. i shri sohan lal bahl. the correction of entries was sought for the year 1978-79 in respect of khasra number 298 situated at kohlapur road, jawahar nagar, delhi. thereafter on the basis of an order dated 21-5-1981 passed on this application by the revenue assistant an entry was made in favor of.....
Judgment:

R.K. Ahooja, J.

(1) The petitioner Shri Mohan Lal son of Shri Ishar Dass has come in a petition under-section 13/16 of the Punjab Land Revenue Act, against the order, dated 24-2-1984 passed by Shri L.D. Gupta, Additional Collector in case No. 253 of 1983 whereby his appeal against the order of Tehsildar passed on 12-10-1983 in case No. 210/CG/82 was rejected.

(2) The petitioner claims that an application for correction of khasra girdawari was filed by Shri C.L. Nijhawan who claims himself as attorney of respondent No. I Shri Sohan Lal Bahl. The correction of entries was sought for the year 1978-79 in respect of khasra number 298 situated at Kohlapur Road, Jawahar Nagar, Delhi. Thereafter on the basis of an order dated 21-5-1981 passed on this application by the Revenue Assistant an entry was made in favor of respondent SohanLal Bahl deleting the name of the petitioner. The petitioner thereafter went in appeal before Shri H.A. Arfi, Additional Collector who set aside the order of the Revenue Assistant and remanded the case to him to be disposed of in accordance with law. The petitioner says that the Tehsildar, Delhi took cognizance of the matter instead of the Revenue Assistant and he passed order on 12-10-1983 in favor of respondent No. 1. The subsequent appeal by the petitioner against that order was dismissed on 24-2-1984. The petitioner has now come up before me with this petition against that order.

(3) The learned counsel for the petitioner argued that Shri C.L. Nijhawan who claimed to hold the power of attorney had no locus standi in the matter and thereforee his application for correction of khasra girdawari could not have been considered in the first instance. Secondly, he argued that the direction of the Additional Collector Shri H.A. Arfi was flouted in as much as the Revenue Assistant instead of dealing with the case himself passed it on to the Tehsildar. The learned counsel argued that the lower appellate court in the impugned order has wrongly assumed that the Tehsildar exercises the powers of the Assistant Collector First Grade and was competent to dispose of the case. The learned counsel also sought to make out that the lower appellate court showed prejudice in passing the impugned order because it questioned the authority of his predecessor and in this context went so far as to state in the impugned order that the order of Shri H.A. Arfi, Additional Collector remanding the case to the Revenue Assistant was contrary to the provisions of the Act. It was asserted by the learned counsel that the lower appellate court wrongly assumed that the Revenue Officer was governed by the Civil Procedure Code as the two procedures were separate and distinct. Objection was also taken to the impugned order on the ground that the order of the Tehsildar was passed on conjectures; that the land purchased by respondent No. I was different from the land in dispute; that the question of the title to which the Additional Collector referred was not a matter in dispute before the Revenue officer; that the Additional Collector wrongly concluded that the entries made in favor of the petitioner were collusive, it was also argued that the Tehsildar could not act under-section 36 of the Punjab Land Revenue Act because the matter was governed by paragraph 99 of the Punjab Land Records Manual.

(4) The case of the petitioner was strongly disputed by the respondent. The first point taken by the learned counsel for the respondent was that this petition was not maintainable under-section 13 of the Act because the original order was confirmed on first appeal and thereforee under-section 13(i) no further appeal shall lie. To this argument, the learned counsel for the petitioner submitted that the respondent had approached this court both under-sections 13 and 16 of the Act. Under-section 16 the Financial Commissioner may at any time call for the record of any case pending before, or disposed of by, any Revenue officer subordinate to him and under-section 16(l)(4) pass such order as he considers fit after giving due opportunity to the other parties. The objection taken by the learned counsel for the respondent as regards section 13 is correct. Since however, the petitioner .has approached me both under-section 13 and 16, the present matter could be regarded as a petition under section 16 and could be dealt with accordingly. However once a matter has been dealt with in an appeal under-section 13 then it becomes incumbent upon the petitioner to show a patent and obvious error on the fact of it which would justify an interference under-section 16(4). The learned counsel for the respondent has drawn my attention to the fact that no objection regarding the locus standi of Shri CL. Nijhawan was raised in the earlier proceedings and in fact the order of Shri H.A. Arfi, Addl. Collector remanding the case on an appeal of the present petitioner itself directed that the application for correction of khasra girdawari dated 10-4-1981 of Shri Sohan Lal Bahl (respondent No. 1) presented by Sbri C.L. Nijhawan general attorney should be disposed of as per provisions of law. This objection seems to have been taken before Shri L.D. Gupta, who has discussed this contention of the petitioner in paragraph 6 of his order. The learned Additional Collector in my view has rightly concluded that the general power of attorney given to Shri C.L. Nijhawan was sufficient and that in any case under-section 36 of the Punjab Land Revenue Act, the Tehsildar was competent even to act suo moto or on the application of any party interested. In the present case as Shri Nijhawan has been pursuing the matter through-out and also because he holds power of attorney this was sufficient to show his interest. The learned counsel for the petitioner argued that under-section 18(1) of the Punjab Land Revenue Act the appearance before the Revenue Officer may be made either by the parties themselves or by their recognised agents or a legal practitioner and that under sub-clause (2) of the same section, recognised agents shall be such persons who are notified by the State Government. The learned counsel for the respondent controverter this and said that, vide notification No. 720 dated 1st November, 1887 quoted in Punjab Land Revenue Act, 1887 (Om Parkash Aggarwala-1963-Edition) recognised agents include persons holding general power of attorney. Further while it is true that under-section 158, the jurisdiction of civil court is excluded in certain revenue matters, it cannot be said that Civil Procedure Code has no relevance where no specific provision regarding the procedure before the Revenue Officer has been prescribed. I, thereforee, do no find that the learned Additional Collector was in error in not accepting the plea of the petitioner that Shri C.L. Nijhawan had no locus standi in the matter before him.

(5) The other point which the learned counsel for the petitioner stressed is that the remand of the case by the Additional Collector Shri H.A. Arfi was to the Revenue Assistant and not to the Tehsildar, and thereforee the matter should have been decided by the Revenue Assistant. Here again the direction of Shri H.A. Arfi, Additional Collector was that the application for correction of khasra girdawari presented through Sbri C.L. Nijhawan, should be disposed of as per provisions of law. As regards the competency of the Tehsildar, Sbri L.D. Gupta, Additional Collector in his order has discussed the matter at considerable length and I do not feel it necessary to cover the same grounds again. Suffice it to say that as an Assistant Collector of First Grade, the Tehsildar was competent to deal with the case in the first instance end be took cognizance of it on a reference from the Revenue Assistant The petitioner has also raised certain points that the land purchased by the respondent No.1 was some other piece of land that the one in dispute; that there are many persons occupying the land including respondent No. I and that the respondent No. I having been shown as occupant on his own land could have no claim for the rest of the land etc. As far as these matters are concerned, I find from the records of the lower courts that the petitioner has not been able to support his case with any substantive evidence. On the other band I find that when the respondent No. I sought correction of entries of khasra girdawari in the court of Shri G.S. Thanewal, Tehsildar, a reply was filed on behalf of Shri Mohan Lal, the present petitioner, in which a preliminary objection was taken that the matter as to who was in possession of the place in dispute forming part of khasra number 298 was subjudice in the civil court of Shri Gulab Tulsyani, sub Judge, Delhi. At page 177 of file No. 210/CG/82 there is a photostat copy of the decision of the court of Shri Gulab Tulsyani in suit NO. 183/1979 decided on 24-9-1983 where the petitioner and respondent No. I were plaintiff and defendant respectively. Therein the plaintiff was stated to have brought the suit claiming that he was the owner and in possession of house measuring 2 bids was in khasra number 298 situated in village Delhi Patti, New Chandrawal, Subzimandi, Delhi and said house is adjacent to house No. 5335, New Chandrawal village Subzimandi belonging to Shri Sohan Lal. At page 18 of the said order, the learned Civil Court came to the conclusion that the respondent No. I herein was owner of the suit property and disputed portion is not independent but part and parcel of house No. 5335, Kohlapur Road Jawahar Nagar, Delhi. A perusal of the order also shows that the petitioner here had sought to establish his claim on the basis of the khasra girdawari but this was not accepted by the learned civil court. The conclusion of the civil court was that the suit before it was brought in collusion. This civil suit with which the petitioner also refers in the proceedings before Shri G.S. Thanewal in fact goes contrary to the claim put-forth by the petitioner.

(6) Considering the records of the lower courts and arguments put-forth by the learned counsels for the parties, I do not find that there is any need for me to interfere against the order of the learned Additional Collector even under-section 16 of the Act. Accordingly the petition stand dismissed.


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