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2008 (9) TMI 978 - SUPREME COURT OF INDIA

2008 (9) TMI 978 - SUPREME COURT OF INDIA - TMI - Civil Appeal No. _ of 2008 (Special Leave Petition (Civil) No. 3823 of 2007) - Dated:- 24-9-2008 - Altamas Kabir And Markandey Katju, JJ. JUDGMENT Altamas Kabir, J. 1. Leave granted. 2. Two Conveyances in respect of two different plots of land, both shown to have been registered before the District Registrar, South 24 Parganas, West Bengal, on 14.3.1989, being Deed No.3203 of 1989 and recorded in Book No.1, Volume No.75, at Pages 167-174, have gi .....

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o the identical registration details and the fact that the sale deed of the respondent No.1 was not traceable in the records of the office of the complainant. Claiming the deed of the appellant herein to have been forged and wrongfully placed in Volume 75 of 1989 in Index I, maintained in the District Registrar's office, Alipore, the respondent No.1 filed a writ petition before the High Court, inter alia, alleging that his Deed, which was the genuine deed, had been removed from the records a .....

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lodged by the District Registrar, South 24 Parganas, and to proceed against the culprits in accordance with the law. 4. The learned Single Judge who heard the writ petition took note of the fact that action had been taken on the basis of the complaint made by the District Registrar, South 24 Parganas and that Alipore Police Station Case No.110 dated 27.5.2006 had been instituted under Sections 467/468/471/420 and 120-B IPC. It was also noted that further investigation into the complaint was bei .....

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aceable in the concerned Volume Register maintained in the Registration Office and that another sale deed pertaining to a totally separate plot of land with the identical registration details was in the records, the High Court felt that the learned Single Judge ought not to have rejected the writ petition filed by the respondent No.1 only on the ground that a criminal case is pending. Accordingly, while disposing of the appeal the Division Bench set aside the order of the learned Single Judge an .....

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of the Division Bench of the Calcutta High Court disposing of the writ appeal of the respondent No.1. It appears that in terms of the order of the Division Bench of the High Court the District Registrar, fixed 12th January, 2007, for hearing but the said hearing was adjourned to 31st January, 2007, on the ground of the appellant's illness. In between on 11th January, 2007, the present Special Leave Petition was filed. 8. From the records it appears that the enquiry was held on 31st January, .....

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be genuine in the appropriate place of the Book Volume. 10. On 6th September, 2007, a charge-sheet was submitted against the appellant in Alipore Police Station Case No.110 of 2006, which had been registered on the complaint of Shri S.K. Debnath, District Registrar, South 24 Parganas, alleging the commission of offences by the appellant under Sections 471/420 IPC. 11. Appearing for the appellant, Mr. Pradip Ghosh, learned senior counsel, questioned the propriety of the order passed by the Divis .....

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me of the enquiry as the judgment of the said officer could be clouded by bias against the appellant. It was submitted that the judgment of the High Court and the directions contained therein were heavily loaded against the appellant and to his severe prejudice. 12. It was also submitted that the bias of the District Judge came through strongly on account of the fact that despite the High Court's directions to consider the genuineness of both the sale deeds executed in favour of respondent N .....

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nd it was, therefore, absolutely necessary for the respondent No.2 to have gone into the genuineness of the appellant's sale Deed as well before arriving at a finding as to whether any fraud or forgery had at all been committed. 14. Mr. Ghosh urged that on 2nd June, 2005, some miscreants had tresspassed into the appellant's property and had demolished the rooms erected thereupon by the appellant. A written complaint was lodged by the appellant on 3rd June, 2005, before the Inspector-in- .....

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suit for declaration and permanent injunction, being Title Suit No. 141 of 2005, against the appellant before the learned Civil Judge (Junior Division) 2nd Court at Baruipur, in respect of the plot of land acquired by the appellant by virtue of the sale deed executed in his favour by Sayaram Basu, together with an application for temporary injunction under Order 39 Rules 1 and 2 and Section 151 of the Code of Civil Procedure. The said application for temporary injunction was rejected by the lea .....

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was thereafter filed despite the order of the civil court. Mr. Ghosh submitted that such an enquiry as directed by the Writ Court, which had the effect of by passing the decree of the civil court was, entirely without jurisdiction and was liable to be set aside. 16. Mr. Ghosh concluded on the note that on the strength of the two Conveyances both the appellant, as well as the respondent, have been in undisturbed possession of the properties conveyed to them by their respective deeds. Therefore, .....

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the District Registrar, South 24 Parganas, on 14th March, 1989, and had been numbered as Deed No. 3203 of 1989 and recorded in Book No.1, Volume No. 75 at pages 167-174 and that any other document which purported to have the same registration particulars had to be a forged and/or fabricated document which had been fraudulently inserted in the records of the District Registrar in place of the Deed of the respondent No.1. A complaint had, therefore, been made to the District Registrar to hold an e .....

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ellant had been asked to produce his original document, but neither did he appear on the date fixed (12.1.2007) nor did he produce the original Sale Deed. Only a prayer was made by his learned advocate to adjourn the hearing. It was, in fact, adjourned to 31st January, 2007. On the said date, although, the respondent No.1 was present, the appellant again remained absent and his advocate merely informed the District Registrar that a Special Leave Petition had been filed before this Court against .....

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of the District Registrar that he had taken due note of the stay order passed by this Court in this Civil Appeal in which the District Registrar was also directed to proceed with the enquiry. 20. Reference was also made to the affidavit filed on behalf of the Officer-in-Charge, Alipore Police Station, wherein it had been mentioned that during the course of investigation it was noticed that the Register Volume-I is accessible to the members of public for the purpose of searching for information i .....

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Court, in exercise of its powers under Article 226 of the Constitution, was fully competent to order such an enquiry to be conducted to enable the Court to arrive at a proper finding with regard to the dispute. Mr. Mehta submitted that the enquiry conducted by the District Registrar on the direction given by the High Court could not be challenged on the ground that the Registration Act did not provide for such an enquiry to be undertaken. 22. Mr. Tara Chand Sharma, learned advocate, appearing fo .....

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ately chose not to avail of such opportunity and filed the present Civil Appeal instead. It was urged that it was no longer open to the appellant to claim that his Deed had been rightly numbered as Deed No. 3203 of 1989. 23. Having carefully considered the submissions made on behalf of the respective parties and the materials on record, we are inclined to agree with Mr. Mehta that the enquiry conducted by the District Registrar under the directions of the High Court in exercise of its jurisdicti .....

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y the High Court a copy of the same is required to be kept in the said Book-Volume. To that extent, there is no reason to interfere with the directions and order passed by the High Court. 24. We are also not inclined to accept Mr. Ghosh's submission that since the suit filed by Shri Dipankar Dey on behalf of the daughter of the appellant's vendor had been dismissed for default, no further direction could have been given by the Writ Court to conduct an enquiry into the genuineness of the .....

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obably with that object in mind that both the High Court and this Court had directed the enquiry to continue while restraining the respondent No.1 from acting on the findings in the enquiry to place a copy of the Sale Deed of the respondent No.1 in the relevant place of Book No.1, Volume No.75, in the office of the District Registrar, South 24 Parganas. 25. However, there is another angle to the matter, which appears to have been overlooked both by the District Registrar as well as by the High C .....

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