Skip to content


K.S. Govinda Pillai Vs. District Collector, Quilon and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtKerala High Court
Decided On
Case NumberO.P. No. 85 of 1956 (E)
Judge
Reported inAIR1957Ker152
ActsLand Acquisition Act, 1894 - Sections 3, 18, 18(1) and 18(2); Travancore Land Acquisition Act, 1089 - Sections 3 and 18; Constitution of India - Articles 226 and 227
AppellantK.S. Govinda Pillai
RespondentDistrict Collector, Quilon and anr.
Appellant Advocate M. Madhavan Nair, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateGovt. Pleader
DispositionPetition allowed
Cases ReferredIn Mahammad v. Kunhi Kutti Ali
Excerpt:
- - when it is remembered that the suit is really on behalf of the tarwad, that any junior member may bring such a suit, and that all members have, or should have, an equal interest in its success, i can discover no ground of principle which prevents a court from permitting any junior member who expresses his willingness, from carrying on the cause. any fresh application subsequent to the death of the original petitioner would have been clearly barred by limitation under sub-section (2) of section 18. 10. the petition is allowed with cosls in the manner indicated above, advocate's fee rs......its chief secretary. the prayer in tha petition is that this court sbould:'call for the records in land acquisition case no. 585 of 1955 on the file of the first respondent and issue an order, direction or writ in the nature of certiorari and mandamus quashing the order d. dis. no. 3976/56/l. a., dated 14-3-1956 (the original of ext. a) of the first respondent and directingthe first respondent to make a reference in accordance with ss. 18 and 19 of the land acquisition act. xi/1089 to the district judge, quilen with all costs'.3. in the application filed before the first res- ponclent and rejected by him the petitioner alleged that the property involved in land acquisition case no. 585 of 1955 was part of the prjperties of a dcvaswom belonging to his tarwad, that the compensation awarded.....
Judgment:

M.S. Menon, J.

1. This petition was filed on 28-3-1956. The petitioner died on 14-11-1956 and his brother was brought on record as per the order da'ed 11-3-1957 On C. M. P. No. 178 of 1957. The respondents did not object to that petition being allowed and the order was: 'Not opposed. Allowed''.

2. The first respondent is the District Collector, Quilon, and the second, the State of Travancore-Cochin represented by its Chief Secretary. The prayer in tha petition is that this court sbould:

'call for the records in Land Acquisition Case No. 585 of 1955 on the file of the first respondent and issue an order, direction or writ in the nature of certiorari and mandamus quashing the order D. Dis. No. 3976/56/L. A., dated 14-3-1956 (the original of Ext. A) of the first respondent and directingthe first respondent to make a reference in accordance with Ss. 18 and 19 of the Land Acquisition Act. XI/1089 to the District Judge, Quilen with all costs'.

3. In the application filed before the first res- ponclent and rejected by him the petitioner alleged that the property involved in Land Acquisition Case No. 585 of 1955 was part of the prjperties of a Dcvaswom belonging to his tarwad, that the compensation awarded was inadequate and prayed for a reference under Section 18 of the Travancore Land Acquisition Act, 1089, Sub-section (1) of which reads as follows:

'Any person interested who has not accepted the award, may by written application to the Division Peishkar, require that the matter be referred by the Division Peishkar for the determination of the District Court within whose jurisdiction the land is situate whether his objection be to the measurement of the land, the amount of the compensation, the persons to whom it is payable, or the apportionment of compensation among the persons interested'.

4. Sub-section (2) of the section provides that the application shall state the grounds on which objection to the award is taken and that it should be filed within a specified time. The reference was not refused on the ground that the provisions of Sub-section (2) of Section 18 have not been complied with and it was not contended before us that the application was either defective or that it was barred by limitation.

5. What the Collector did was to hold that the petitioner was not a 'person interested' and dismissed the application. He said:

'The Tahsildar has reported that the petitioner had no' interest on the land acquired according to the revenue records. He is, therefore, not entitled to claim a reference under Section 18 of the Land Acquisition Act. In the circumstances, the application is rejected'.

There can be no doubt that the first respondent has completely misunderstood the statutory provisions bearing on the subject. A 'person interested' who had not accepted the award has the right to insist on a reference to the District Court, if he had complied with the provisions of Sub-section (2) of Section 18. A 'person interested' does not mean a person whose interest the Collector is prepared to admit. The expression has been defined -in Section 3 (b) of the Act. The definition reads as follows:

'The expression 'Person interested' includes all persons claiming an interest in compensation to be made on account of the acquisition of land under this Regulation; and a person shall be deemed to be interested in land if he is interested in an easement affecting the land'.

6. As pointed out in Parameswara lycr v. Land Acquisition Collector, ILR 42 Madras 231 : (AIR 1919 Mad 583 (2)) (A).

'Section 18 enables 'any person interested, who has not accepted the award' to 'require' a reference: and Section 3 (b) defines 'person interested' as including all persons claiming an interest in the compensation. As long as the application sets out a claim to an interest in the compensation, it is no part of the Collector's duty to decide whether the claim is wellfounded: and he is not authorised to refuse to make the reference merely because he may think it is not'.

A recent decision to the same effect is Kako Bai v. Land Acquisition Collector, Hissar AIR 1956 Punjab 231 (B).

6a. Ghosh in his 'Law of Compulsory Acquisition and Compensation' states the proposition as follows;

'The word 'require' implies compulsion. It carries with it the idea that the written application should itself make it incumbent on the Collector to make a reference'. (Fourth Edition, page 149).

7. It follows that Ext. A has to be quashed and, the first respondent directed to make a reference to the District Court. Order accordingly.

8. At the hearing on 19-6-1957 the learned Government Pleader raised a contention to the effect that the person brought on record in pursuance of the order on C. M. P. No. 178 of 1957 was not entitled to continue the proceedings or get auy relief in this petition as the original petitioner was only exercising the personal right of a junior member of a Nair tarwad to conserve his family properly when he filed his application before the Collector under Section 18 of the Travancore Land Acquisition Act, 1089, and this petition under Articles 226 and 227 of the Constitution. The original petitioner had specifically stated in the application before the Collector and in the affidavit in support of the petition before us that he was agitating the matter for and On behalf of the tarwad and in view of that we see no reason to sustain .the contention.

9. In Mahammad v. Kunhi Kutti Ali, AIR 1929 Mad 451(C) Curgenven, J., had to deal with the question as to whether the anandiravans of a Maru-makkathayam tarwad are entitled to continue the proceedings on the death of the senior anandiravan who had filed the suit for and on behalf of their tarwad. He said:

'When it is remembered that the suit is really on behalf of the tarwad, that any junior member may bring such a suit, and that all members have, or should have, an equal interest in its success, I can discover no ground of principle which prevents a Court from permitting any junior member who expresses his willingness, from carrying on the cause. Indeed, such an order seems here to be imperative, ex debito justitia, since if it be not passed the fruits of the deceased plaintiff's action are likely to be lost'.

In this case also a valuable right--the right to insist on a reference--will be lost to the tarwad, if a continuance of the proceedings is not permissible. Any fresh application subsequent to the death of the original petitioner would have been clearly barred by limitation under Sub-section (2) of Section 18.

10. The petition is allowed with cosls in the manner indicated above, advocate's fee Rs. 100/-.


Save Judgments// Add Notes // Store Search Result sets // Organizer Client Files //