Civil Court Verdicts On Rights & Title Of Litigants Binding On Revenue Authorities: Bombay HC [Read Judgment]
The Bombay High Court has held that when the rights and title of the litigants is settled in proceedings by the Civil Courts, such verdicts would be binding upon the revenue authorities.
In this case, the mutation entry was carried out in favour of the decree holder, which was confirmed by Appellate authorities. However, the Minister for State (Revenue) allowed the revision of the judgment debtors and quashed and set aside the orders that had held in favour of the decree holder and directed the S.D.O. to once again carry out an enquiry and pass a fresh order.
Referring to its earlier judgment in Shrikant R. Sankanwar and Ors. vs Krishna Balu Naukudkar, the court said that the verdict of the Civil Court would bind the revenue authorities and mutation entries, which are meant for fiscal purposes, should be carried out in tune with the verdict of the Civil Court. Referring to impugned order by the Minister, Justice Ravindra V.Ghuge said:
"I find from the orders passed by the Talathi and the Tahsildar that they have demonstrated ignorance of Law. The S.D.O. rightly appreciated the fact that once the rights and title of the litigants is settled in proceedings by the Civil Courts, such verdicts would be binding upon the revenue authorities. In this backdrop, the impugned order passed by the Hon'ble Minister for State cannot be sustained as it is against the basic principles of Law."
Though it did not impose costs on the Judgment debtors, the Court said that they have resorted to vexatious litigation. It said:
It is quite often said in matters of execution of decrees that it is easier to succeed in getting a decree in accordance with Law from a Court, but is very difficult to have the decree executed. This is one classic case of such type of vexatious litigation...
The petitioner/plaintiff has run from pillar to post, leading to her exhaustion. She was 30 years old when the litigation began in 1975 and is now 74 years old, having practically spent her entire lifetime in this litigation.