SC: Deprivation of property right only through procedure established by Law

SC: Deprivation of property right only through procedure established by Law

Case: Bajranga (Dead) By Lrs Vs. State Of Madhya Pradesh 

Citation: [Civil Appeal No.6209 of 2010]

Coram: Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice Hrishikesh Roy

Deprivation of property right can only be in accordance with the procedure established by law, Supreme Court stated this in a case which involved proceedings under Madhya Pradesh Ceiling on Agricultural Holdings Act, 1960. 

The appellant’s predecessor-in-interest was the bhumiswami of the agricultural dry land. An order was passed in 1979 against the appellant which declared some extent of the land as surplus. Proceedings were initiated against the appellant for eviction and taking over possession under Section 248 of the Madhya Pradesh land revenue code, 1959 by the respondents. The appellant filed a suit for permanent injunction and declaration of title for the said land. The suit got dismissed by the Trial Court. The Appellate Court however reversed the Trial Court’s decision and held that the authority had failed compliance under Sections 11(3) and 11(4) of the said Act. The appellant was declared as the bhumiswami for the surplus land. The High Court further allowed the second appeal by the respondents and set aside the judgement of the Appellate Court.

The appeal firstly considered the factual issue that whether the appellant had filed their objection before the competent authority and whether they had given the particulars of the civil suit pendency? The bench referred to the pleadings of the respondent, where they found that the appellant in return had filed as per Section 9 of the said Act. 

The court set aside the High Court judgement and restored the judgement of the Appellate Court. The court stated that “The provisions of the said Act are very clear as to what has to be done at each stage. In our view, once a disclosure was made, the matter had to be dealt with under sub-section (4) of Section 11 of the said Act and in view of the pending suit proceedings between the appellant and Jenobai, the proviso came into play which required the respondent authorities to await the decision of the court. Sub-section 5 and thereafter sub-section 6 would kick in only after the mandate of subsection 4 was fulfilled. In the present case, it was not so. Even notice was not issued to Jenobai. She could have clarified the position further. The effect of the decree in favour of Jenobai is that the appellant loses the right to hold that land and his total landholding comes within the ceiling limit. If there is no surplus land there can be no question of any proceedings for taking over of the surplus land under the said Act.”

I am Kaveesha, a student of B.A LL.B (Hons.) from Dharmashastra National Law University, Jabalpur. Knowledge is like an endless ocean and I try to fill my cup with it as much as possible. I believe one should not only aspire to be a student of law but a student of justice as well.