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S.37 Odisha Prevention Of Land Fragmentation Act | Tahasildar Can't Modify Record Of Rights Against Direction Of Revisional Authority: High Court

Jyoti Prakash Dutta
12 Sep 2022 4:45 AM GMT
S.37 Odisha Prevention Of Land Fragmentation Act | Tahasildar Cant Modify Record Of Rights Against Direction Of Revisional Authority: High Court
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The Orissa High Court has recently held that a Tahasildar cannot modify or improve upon the Records of Rights ('ROR') going against the directions of the revisional authority under Section 37 of the Odisha Consolidation of Holdings and Prevention of Fragmentation of Land Act, 1972 ('O.C.H. & P.F.L. Act'). While setting aside such a deviation, a Single Judge Bench of Justice...

The Orissa High Court has recently held that a Tahasildar cannot modify or improve upon the Records of Rights ('ROR') going against the directions of the revisional authority under Section 37 of the Odisha Consolidation of Holdings and Prevention of Fragmentation of Land Act, 1972 ('O.C.H. & P.F.L. Act'). While setting aside such a deviation, a Single Judge Bench of Justice Biswanath Rath observed,

"…the Tahasildar in his limited jurisdiction took a decision differing from the direction of the competent authority U/s.37(1) of the O.C.H. & P.F.L. Act, which is not permissible in the eye of law. For the opinion of this Court so long as the order of the competent authority U/s.37(1) of the O.C.H. & P.F.L. Act, 1972 remains intact, the Tahasildar being the subordinate authority is bound by the same."

Background:

In disposal of a proceeding under Section 37(1) of the O.C.H. & P.F.L. Act, the revisional authority, after providing opportunity of hearing to the State Authorities as well as the private parties involved therein, directed as follows:

"Tahasildar Balipatna is directed to verify all the documents and record the suit land in favour of petitioner and Opp. Parties from 02 to 19 by creating a separate khata and delete the note of possession from Hal plot No.154 and 155 in Hal khata no.542 as per circular No. XLII-65/87, 8089/LRS Dt: 13-07-1987 issued by Board of Revenue, Odisha Cuttack Following Due process of Law."

However, the Tahasildar deviated from the aforesaid direction and modified the RORs against the above order.

Issue for Determination:

Whether the Tahasildar is right in exercising the power of correction of the record of rights in deviation of the direction of the revisional authority?

Court's Findings:

The Court noted that the Tahasildar took a decision which goes against the direction issued by the competent authority under Section 37(1) of the O.C.H. & P.F.L. Act. The Bench held that the aforesaid act of the Tahasildar is not permissible in the eyes of law and in its considered opinion, so long as the order of the competent authority under the above provision remains intact, the Tahasildar being the subordinate authority is bound by the same

The Court found that the Tahasildar, in disposal of the proceedings, exceeded his jurisdiction and even acted contrary to the direction of the superior authority. Accordingly, the Court interfering with the impugned order of the Tahasildar, set aside the same and remitted the matter back to the Tahasildar for reconsideration, strictly in terms of the direction of the revisional authority.

Case Title: Anugraha Narayan Pattnaik v. State of Odisha & Ors.

Case No.: W.P.(C) No. 20072 of 2022

Judgment Dated: 7th September 2022

Coram: Biswanath Rath, J.

Counsel for the Petitioner: M/s. A. Mohanty G.M. Rath, A.S. Mohanty, L. Pradhan

Counsel for the Respondents: Mr. S.P. Panda, Additional Government Advocate

Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (Ori) 136

Click Here To Read/Download Judgment


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