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Rao Bahadur V. Ranganadham Chetty Vs. the Corporation of Madras - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCriminal
CourtChennai
Decided On
Reported inAIR1939Mad810; (1939)2MLJ33
AppellantRao Bahadur V. Ranganadham Chetty
RespondentThe Corporation of Madras
Cases ReferredRobinson v. Local Board
Excerpt:
- - the charge against him was that he failed to comply with a certain notice issued by the commissioner of the corporation of madras under section 217 of the madras city municipal act. disobedience therefore to the notice is clearly established and as the notice was one which was issued subsequent to the coming into force of the act amending the madras city municipal act (x of 1936) the new provision introduced by that act as sub-section 3 of section 380 would apply to the present case and the conviction would be proper unless as contended on behalf of the petitioner the notice itself was an illegal one and was issued without any authority......away leaving twelve feet of land in the middle for a lane.2. it is therefore clear that the twelve feet passage was left for the purpose of forming a lane. the sale deeds themselves have not been produced and it has not been shown that this twelve feet wide passage was included in any of the sale deeds. on the other hand from the admissions of d.w. 1 in cross-examination it would appear that the passage is not included in the area purchased by the purchasers and is not included in the pattas issued in their names. presumably therefore the title to this particular portion of land which was left to form a lane is still vested in the petitioner. the learned advocate for the petitioner referred to robinson v. local board for barton (1882) 21 ch. d. 621, but in a case of the present nature we.....
Judgment:

Pandrang Row, J.

1. The petitioner in this case, was convicted under Section 380 of the Madras City Municipal Act and sentenced to pay a fine of Rs. 10 and in default of payment to undergo simple imprisonment for one week. The charge against him was that he failed to comply with a certain notice issued by the Commissioner of the Corporation of Madras under Section 217 of the Madras City Municipal Act. The notice Ex. A-2 is dated 3rd June, 1936 and it appears to have been served on the petitioner on the 6th July, 1936. It called upon the petitioner to alter a certain street which had been laid out by him in R.S. No. 828/2 of Mylapore without the orders of the Standing Committee. It is admitted that this notice was not obeyed and that what was required in that notice was not done by the petitioner either within the time allowed or till now. Disobedience therefore to the notice is clearly established and as the notice was one which was issued subsequent to the coming into force of the Act amending the Madras City Municipal Act (X of 1936) the new provision introduced by that Act as Sub-section 3 of Section 380 would apply to the present case and the conviction would be proper unless as contended on behalf of the petitioner the notice itself was an illegal one and was issued without any authority. The authority under which the notice was issued is stated to be Section 217 of the Act which says that:

If any person lays out or makes any street referred to in Section 216 without or otherwise than in conformity with the orders of the Standing Committee the Commissioner may, by notice, require the offender to show sufficient cause why such a street should not be altered to the satisfaction of the Commissioner

and so on Section 216 requires that:

Any person intending to lay out or make a new private street must send to the Commissioner a written application with plans and sections

showing certain particulars. Admittedly the provisions of this section, that is, Section 216 were not observed by the petitioner in this case, and indeed it is his contention that he never intended to lay out or make a new private street at all. The question therefore resolves itself into this, namely, whether, when the petitioner sold his land, that is, R.S. No. 828/2 of Mylapore in 1934to certain persons, he did intend to layout or make a new private street. There is no doubt from the evidence that the land was parcelled out into as many as 12 plots for building purposes and sold to four or five purchasers leaving a passage about twelve feet, in width. The petitioner himself in a letter of his dated 20th March, 1935, namely, Ex. II says that he has sold the lands leaving twelve feet from north to south and eleven feet from east to west and adds that the rest has been sold away. In his reply to a subsequent letter, namely, Ex. III-C, the petitioner says as follows:

The whole plot has been sold away leaving twelve feet of land in the middle for a lane.

2. It is therefore clear that the twelve feet passage was left for the purpose of forming a lane. The sale deeds themselves have not been produced and it has not been shown that this twelve feet wide passage was included in any of the sale deeds. On the other hand from the admissions of D.W. 1 in cross-examination it would appear that the passage is not included in the area purchased by the purchasers and is not included in the pattas issued in their names. Presumably therefore the title to this particular portion of land which was left to form a lane is still vested in the petitioner. The learned advocate for the petitioner referred to Robinson v. Local Board for Barton (1882) 21 Ch. D. 621, but in a case of the present nature we have to look more to the definition of the word 'street', private or public, found in the Act itself rather than to English decisions as to the meaning of the word 'street'. The definition in the Act itself is clear and it shows that the passage set apart in the present case for the purpose of a lane would come under the definition of a street; it is not necessary that there should be rows of buildings on either side actually in existence before a street comes into existence so far as the provisions of the City Municipal Act are concerned. It is therefore in my opinion impossible to say that there was no street laid out in this case. It may be that nothing was done to the passage that was left to serve the purpose of a pathway. But nonetheless what was done would amount to laying down a new private street. In these circumstances, as the other facts are admitted, namely, that no plans were sent in respect of such a street and the street was laid out without the orders of the Standing Committee, the Commissioner was entitled in law to issue the notice in question. The disobedience to the notice is admitted and in these circumstances it cannot be said that the conviction of the petitioner is contrary to law. No complaint has been made about the severity of the sentence. The petition is therefore dismissed.


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