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Panchayat Board, Kudaravalli Gudiwada Taluk, Krishna District Represented by Its President, Sanka Gopala Rao and ors. Vs. Inspector of Municipal Councils and Local Boards, Madras and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtChennai High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Misc. Petn. No. 260 of 1951
Judge
Reported inAIR1953Mad175; (1952)1MLJ285
ActsMadras Local Boards Act, 1920 - Sections 45A(1)
AppellantPanchayat Board, Kudaravalli Gudiwada Taluk, Krishna District Represented by Its President, Sanka Go
Respondentinspector of Municipal Councils and Local Boards, Madras and anr.
Appellant AdvocateD. Narasaraju and ;K.B. Krishnamurthy, Advs.
Respondent AdvocateGovt. Pleader and ;A. Sambasiva Rao, Adv.
DispositionPetition dismissed
Excerpt:
- - (a) the president has been keeping large cash balance on hand but the board failed to pull up the president; and (b) the president failed to serve notice of meetings with agenda to the members. the inspector of municipal councils and local boards considered the reports of the subordinate officers and the explanation of the panchayat board together with the remarks made by the district panchayat officer and was satisfied that action should be taken against the panchayat board under section 45-a (1). on 20th december 1950 the inspector of municipal councils and local boards passed an order superseding the panchayat board. nor am i satisfied by the allegations made in the affidavit that the proceedings were started not in the interests of the board but for other extraneous reasons......rao, j.1. this application is for quashing the order of the inspector of municipal councils and local boards dated 20th december 1950 superseding under section 45-a(1) of the madras local boards act the kudaravalli panchayat board for a period of one year. on 12th october 1950 the inspector of municipal councils and local boards issued a notice to the panchayat board calling upon them to show cause within 15 days from the date of the receipt of the notice why the panchayat board should not be superseded under section 45-a (1) of the madras local boards act. in that notice, the inspector stated the following reasons for the proposed action: (1) for the year 1949-50, the panchayat board realised a large amount from the proceeds of the grass sales but only credited a sum of rs. 364; (2).....
Judgment:
ORDER

Subba Rao, J.

1. This application is for quashing the order of the Inspector of Municipal Councils and Local Boards dated 20th December 1950 superseding under Section 45-A(1) of the Madras Local Boards Act the Kudaravalli Panchayat Board for a period of one year. On 12th October 1950 the Inspector of Municipal Councils and Local Boards issued a notice to the Panchayat Board calling upon them to show cause within 15 days from the date of the receipt of the notice why the Panchayat Board should not be superseded under Section 45-A (1) of the Madras Local Boards Act. In that notice, the Inspector stated the following reasons for the proposed action: (1) For the year 1949-50, the Panchayat Board realised a large amount from the proceeds of the grass sales but only credited a sum of Rs. 364; (2) No amenity worth the name has been provided by the Panchayat Board and that they have not kept the fresh water tank in a sanitary condition; (3) the Panchayat Board has not 'checked the President or reported to the higher authorities the following irregularities; (a) the President has been keeping large cash balance on hand but the Board failed to pull up the President; and (b) the President failed to serve notice of meetings with agenda to the members.

To this notice the Panchayat Board filed a statement explaining the charges made against the President and also the members of the Panchayat Board. The Inspector of Municipal Councils and Local Boards considered the reports of the subordinate officers and the explanation of the Panchayat Board together with the remarks made by the District Panchayat Officer and was satisfied that action should be taken against the Panchayat Board under Section 45-A (1). On 20th December 1950 the Inspector of Municipal Councils and Local Boards passed an order superseding the Panchayat Board.

2. The learned counsel for the petitioner raised before me three points: (1) the order of the Inspector was based upon non-existing facts; (2) the order was made mala fide having regard to extraneous circumstances and (3) the order does not disclose the reasons as a judicial order should do.

3. The petitioner has filed a long affidavit before me canvassing the various reasons disclosed in the notice issued by the Inspector for the action taken by him. After going through the affidavit in some detail, though there is the possibility of another tribunal coming to a different conclusion, I cannot say that there is no material on which the Inspector could have come to the conclusion which he did. Nor am I satisfied by the allegations made in the affidavit that the proceedings were started not in the interests of the Board but for other extraneous reasons. There is also no materials to hold that the Inspector acted mala fide in the exercise of his jurisdiction.

4. Mr. Narasaraju then argued that drasticpower in the hands of an Officer is susceptibleof abuse if he is not bound to give reasons forhis satisfaction. In support of his argumenthe relied upon my order in - 'W. P. No. 171 of1951'. There I held that the Government insetting aside the orders of inferior tribunalsunder Section 64A of the Motor Vehicles Act shoulddisclose the reasons in their order. But theGovernment in exercising the power under Section 64-A of the Motor Vehicles Act is exercisingrevisional jurisdiction, whereas in the case ofan Inspector, though he has got to exercise hisfunctions judicially, the section does not imposeon him a duty to give reasons for his action.I agree with Mr. Narasaraju that in theinterests of public institutions in this country,an officer, however competent and otherwisehonest, cannot be entrusted with drastic powerswithout the elementary safeguard that he shouldgive reasons for his action. But it is for theLegislature to amend the Act suitably havingregard to the changed circumstances after thiscountry had become independent. But on thesection as it stands I am not prepared to extendthe principle laid down by me in -- 'W. P.No. 171 of 1951' to an order under Section 45-A (1)of the Madras Local Boards Act. This petitionis dismissed with costs, one set. Advocate'sfee Rs. 100.


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