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Bharpur Singh etc. Vs State

IN THE COURT OF SHRI S.S.KHARA ,P.C.S. ADDITIONAL DIRECTOR CONSOLIDATION OF HOLDINGS PUNJAB-CUM-MANAGING OFFICER (HEADQUARTER) REHABILITATION PUNJAB KOTHI .NO. 280  SECTOR-10-A, CHANDIGARH

 

Case No.                                 Date of Institution                                 Date of decision

M.O./H.O/125                              26/05/1998                                        26/06/2001

 

1.         Sh. Bharpur Singh son of Bikram Singh

            (Died in the last week of December 2000 and LRs have not joined in his

            place during the last 6 months).

2.         Sh. Sandeep Singh son of Gurmel Singh

            both residents of villag3 Fattanwala, P.O. Akalgarh, Tehsil & District

            Mukatsar.

 

            …Petitioners.

Versus

 

State of Punjab

…Respondents.

 

Present:            Sh. Dinesh Ghai, Advocate for petitioner No. 2, No body is present from the side of petitioner No. 1(Deceased).

                                                                                     ORDER

On 26/5/1998 petitioners Bharpur Singh son of Bikram Singh and Sandeep Singh son of Gurmel Singh residents of Village Fattanwala Tehsil and District Mukatsar filed this petition supported by an affidavit of petitioner No.1. In this petition it has been contended that Late Mahant Manohar Dass abandoned about 1100 Ghumaon (Acres) land in village Ram Parshad District Mintgomery, now in Pakistan and he was a displaced person and after migration to India got settled at the native place of the petitioners. In support of their contention a certified copy of the Jamabandi received from Pakistan and obtained from D.L.R. office, Jalandhar pertaining to village Ram Parshad District Mintgomery has been attached by the petitioners. It has been further contended that Mahant Manohar Dass stayed for the last 12 years with the petitioners before his death on 20/3/1998. He executed a Regd. WILL dated 10/11/1997 in favour of the petitioners in equal shares. It has been further averred that Sh.Manohar Dass died a bachelor. And that as per said WILL the petitioners were the legal representatives of late Mahant Dass. A true photo copy of the said Regd. WILL dated 10/11/1997 and that of the Death certificate have been attached with the petition.

It has been further contended that after the execution of said Regd. WILL dated 10/11/1997 the petitioners spent a lot of time in collecting the particulars about the abandoned land and on 17/2/1998 they applied to the copying agency at Jalandhar for getting the certified copy of the said Jamabandi which has been delivered on 16/3/98 by the copying agency. Thereafter, unfortunately Mahant Manohar Dass expired on 20/3/1998 and now the present petition is being presented after getting the counsel engage. The petitioners have stated that as per their knowledge lat Mahant Manohar Dass had not got any land or compensation in lieu of the said abandoned land. The petitioners have been deprived of this land till date for no fault of their own and that from the date of knowledge they have approached this court and that there was no delay on their art. Even otherwise there was no statutory limitation as per settled law for the allotment of land. The status of the petitioners was that of unsatisfied claimant. Now as per Settled Law provisions of Rule 67-A of the Displaced Persons (C&R) Rules, 1955 under which application was required to be filed before or on the crucial date i.e. 31/12/1963 is not attracted. Attention has been invited to the law enunciated in the case of Naik Dalip Singh Vs. Financial Commissioner, Revenue decided by Hon’ble Justice D.S.Tewatia. As per this ruling a person is entitled to allotment on the basis of the land entries in the Jamabandi received from Pakistan and Rule 67-A as well as filing of verified claim are not required 1967 (2) LLR Page 141. Two other rulings 1975 PLJ 501 (Man Singh etc. Vs. Chief Settlement Commissioner) & 1992 PLJ Page 603 (Case of Guranditta) have been cited in the petition.

It has also been mentioned that due to non allotment of land for the last more than four decades no loss has occurred to the State exchequer and only the petitioners were the sufferers, Non-allotment of land is due to the mistake of the Rehabilitation Deptt. As it should have made the allotment when record was received from Pakistan. As per settled law due to mistakes, acts of Commissions or omissions of the Courts or of its Officers a litigant can’t be made to suffer as enunciated in 1969 PLR Page 472 (Mangat Ram’s Case). The principle of natural justice also demands that the petitioners should be allotted land in lieu of the land left by late Mahant Manohar Dass in Pakistan and for that the Rehabilitation authorities should not take shelter behind the procedural technicalities and legal lacuna, if any.

In the end a prayer has been made that in the interest of justice and in the light of detailed factual & legal submissions made therein the present petition may be accepted and the land be allotted to the petitioners.

This case was taken up by my predecessor and on 17/12/1998 the learned Counsel for the petitioners Sh. Dinesh Ghai was directed that a translation of the Jamabandi of Pakistan in Punjabi and evidence regarding legal heirs of the deceased be produced on 4/2/1999/ Thereafter the case remained pending without any action. After assignment of work of Managing Officer to me the case was taken up for hearing on 28/8/2000 and thereafter the was taken up for hearing on 4/12/2000, 29/1/2001/30/1/2001, 14/5/2001 and on all the above dates the Counsel for the petitioners was directed to produce the relevant documents and also present the petitioners in Court so that their statement could be recorded in connection with the claim case. On 14/5/2001 Sh. Dinesh Ghari Learned Advocate for the petitioners pointed out that he had sent a number of letters and messages to the petitioners but they are not coming present. He sought more time for presenting the petitioners. On that day it was also ordered by this court that petitioners be summoned by sending notice through Regd. Letters as well as summons through Tehsildar Mukatsar and case was fixed for 11/6/2001. Petitioner No. 2 Sh. Sandeep Singh received the notice sent through Regd. Letter as well as summons sent through Tehsildar Mukatsar. The Regd. Notice sent to petitioner No. 1 Sh. Bharpur Singh & summons sent through Tehsildar were received back with the report that Bharpur Singh had died.

On 11/6/2001 Sh. Sandeep Singh S/O Gurmel Singh Petitioner No. 2 came present in the Court and got recorded his statement in Punjabi. In his statement he has stated that Sh. Bharpur Singh S/O Bikram Singh alongwith him had filed a joint claim case under Displaced Persons (C&R) Act, 1954 in this Court. He has come present in pursuance of the summons sent by the Court. Bharpur Singh petitioner No. 1 had died during the last week of December, 2000. He had left wife & two children as legal heirs. He shall produce application from LRs and their Wakalatnama on the next date of hearing. He further stated that this case relates to the land left by Mahant Manohar Dass Chela Maghi Dass in village Ram Parshad District Mintgomery in Pakistan. The said Mahant Manohar Dass at the time of partition of the country in 1947, had migrated to India and he was residing in village Fattanwala since then and that he used to go out for roaming occasionally. In village Fattanwala Manohar Dass had no land, property or house. He stayed throughout with Bharpur Singh’s father Sh. Bikram Singh. Mahant Manohar Dass had come to India lone and he used to tell that he has no real relations. Mahant Manohar Dass had filed neither any case nor any application of Mutalba claim for seeking the land in lieu of land abandoned by him in Pakistan. He and Bharpur Singh were serving the said Mahant Manohar Dass and due to this said Mahant Manohar Dass executed a WILL dated 10/11/1997. This WILL was got registered at Sr.No. 211 on 10/11/1997 in the office of Sub Registrar, Mukatsar. The witness of the WILL Sh. Bikram Singh Lambardar is still alive. He would produce the original WILL on the next date and he shall also produce Sh. Bikram Singh Lambardar as witness of the WILL and also get recorded the statement of wife of Bharpur Singh being his legal heir. Mahant Manohar Dass before his death remained for 11/2 months at their residence House No. 66, Khalsa School Road, Mukatsar and he died at this place and due to this Mukatsar has been shown as his place of residence at the time of death in his death certificate. The name of said Mahant Manohar Dass was never included in their or Bharpur Singh’s ration card. Now he can’t tell with certainty whether the name of Mahant Manohar Dass was ever recorded in any voter list. He will enquire about this and shall clear the position on next date. Besides this he would tell about any bank account etc. of Mahant Manohar Dass only after necessary enquiry. The said Mahant Manohar Dass Chela Mahant Maghi Dass is the same person whose land is existing in Jamabandi of village Ram Parshad District Mintgomery of Pakistan. He concluded his statement by saying that a certified copy of said Jamabandi has already been palced on file by the petitioners.

After recording his statement the case was adjourned to 19/6/2001. But on 19/6/2001 neither Sh. Sandeep Singh petitioner No. 2 nor he produced original WILL, nor he bought Sh. Bikram Singh for deposing as witness of the WILL. Wakalatnama from LR’s of Bharpur Singh was also not produced. Advocate appearing on his behalf also showed his total ignorance for the reasons of non-appearance of the above person despite the undertaking/commitment by Sandeep Singh petitioner No. 2 in his statement recorded on 11/6/2001 in this regard.

Keeping in view the oral request of the Advocate the case was adjourned for today to give another opportunity to Sandeep Singh petitioner No. 2 to complete his evidence/place on file wakalatnama of LR’s of deceased Bharpur Singh (Petitioner No.1). Needless to say that it was the responsibility of the legal heirs of the deceased applicant/petitioner No. 1 to make a request to join the proceedings as legal heirs. Further it was the responsibility of Sandeep Singh applicant/petitioner No. 2 to give intimation about the death of his Co-petitioner. Finally it was for the Advocate to file an application to this effect so that LRs of the deceased applicant may be allowed to join the proceedings. But in spite of all this in a period of 6 months since the death of Bharpur Singh no application to the effect was made by any of the persons mentioned above.

Today petitioner has been taken up in the presence of counsel for the petitioners. Learned Counsel has stated that due to the death of petitioner No. 1 in the last week of December, 2000 now he is representing only petitioner No.2 as during the last 6 months the LRs of petitioner No. 1 have not moved any application to join as petitioner in place of petitioner No.1. Even on 11/6/2001 petitioner No. 2 had assured that he will procure wakalatnama/application to join in the proceedings from the LRs of petitioner No.1. The Counsel has further stated that petitioner No. 2 had also neither turned up on last Peshi on 19/6/2001 nor has come present today in spite of the fact that he was directed to do so by this Court as well as by himself (Advocate). This failure on their part compels me to proceed in the absence of LRs of petitioner No.1 especially in view of the fact that co-petitioner Sandeep Singh had already appeared and got his statement recorded and he was duly directed to produce the legal heirs of Sh. Bharpur Singh on his own responsibility. The interest of LRs of Bharpur Singh (Petitioner No.1) is not affected adversely in any manner as discussed in succeeding paras. Learned Counsel for the petitioner has stated that the requisite evidence was not produced by Sandeep Singh on last Peshi of 19/6/2001 and even today he has not turned up. So the petitioner be decided on the basis of existing evidence viz. entries in Jamabandi received from Pakistan, Photocopy of Regd. WILL dated 10/11/1997 and copy of death certificate.

Learned Counsel for the petitioner No.2 has argued that from the copy of Jamabandi placed on file it is evident that Substantial Agricultural land was existing in the name of Mahant Manohar Dass Chela Maghi Dass Sadhu Udasi in village Ram Parshad Tehsil Diwalpur District Mintgomery now in Pakistan. In the Regd. WILL dated 10/11/1997 said Mahant Manohar Dass has devised that his entire property existing on the date of WILL or property which he may get by allotment or otherwise shall devolve on Bharpur Singh S/O Bikram Singh and Sandeep Singh S/O Gurmel Singh in equal shares. So both the petitioners were his legal respresentatives and they are entitled to claim the right of allotment in lieu of land abandoned by him, which was pending with the Rehabilitation Deptt. since the last 50 years or so. It is the fault of Rehabilitation Deptt. that it took no steps to allot the land to Mahant Manohar Dass. In view of the rulings cited in the petition Rule 67-A is not attracted. From the copy of death certificate it is evident that said Mahant Manohar Dass had breathed his last on 20/3/1998 at Mukatsar.

Learned Counsel for the petitioners ( Now only for petitioner No. 2) has prepared & projected the case with the help of documents supplied by the petitioners and quoting the various rulings of higher courts as if the case is totally genuine and relief is required to be provided in the interest of Justice as said Mahant Manohar Dass / his legal representatives are suffering for the last 5 decades. When I took up the case for hearing during August 2000 it struck to my mind that how a prudent man who left more than 7700 Kanals of Agricultural land in Pakistan and came to India and remained alive uptill March 1998, as have been claimed in this petition, did not agitate his claim for 50 years and now he suddenly came out of deep slumber after 5 decades. Accordingly counsel for petitioners was directed to produce the petitioners so that their statement could be recorded. On 11/6/2001 petitioner No.2 appeared before me and got recorded his statement. On that day he could not satisfy me about the identity of Mahant Manohar Dass. On the one hand he stated that the said Mahant Manohar Dass after migration to India lived in Fattanwala village with the family of Bikram Singh Lambardar but he admitted that his (Mahant Manohar Dass’s) name is not figuring in Ration Card of that family. He was evasive about the entry of Mahant Manohar Dass Chela Mahant Maghi Dass’s name in any voter list or any back account. The above facts further strengthened the suspicion.

As the statement given by Sandeep Singh could not satisfy me on some of the vital questions and issued so it was thought essential to verify the facts from the copies of Jamabandis/other record kept in the office of Director Land Record, Punjab, Jalandhar. I myself with the help of Urdu knowing Officer examined the copy of Jamabandi and other record received from Pakistan pertaining to village Ram Parshad Tehsil Dipalpur district Mintgomery. In the remakrs colum of concerned Jamabandi’s Khewat relating to Mahant Manohar Dass’s holdings brief note was found in Urudu. Gurumakhi transcription is reproduced below:

Punjabi

In column No. 5 name of Mahant Manohar Dass Chela Mahant Maghi Dass Sadhu Udasi is existing. The contents of this note further strengthened the suspicion about this claim case. Further inspection yielded a report, sent by Tehsildar Dipalpur (Pakistan) found pasted in the end of concerned Jamabandi of village Ram Parshad. This report has been sent in response to some verification sought in the year 1954 regarding the land of said Mahant Manohar Dass. This report is in Urdu Script. Its Punjabi transcription is reproduced below:

Punjabi

This report has been marked to N.T.Exchange.

In English language its true translation is as follows :

Reply to letter of Engligh language No. 3090/CRR dated 6/5/54.

As per field report Mahant Manohar Dass Chela Maghi Das expired about 2 years ago in village Ram Parshad and said person at the time of partition of the country, after adopting Islam married a muslim woman Mst. Nooran and remained in possession of his land and a son Munawar Ali was born to him. On the death of Manohar Dass mutation of inheritence was entered & sanctioned in favour of Munawar Ali & Mst. Nooran widow of deceased but afterwards it was cancelled due to the land belonging to GADDI (Religious seat). Because Manohar Dass became Muslim and stayed here and he remained in possession over his land. So his land was neither allotted to any Mohajir (Refugee) nor it was declared as evacuee property. Now as per orders of Deputy Commissioner Sahib Mintgomery the land of GADDI (Religious Seat) has been given on sapurdari to Rahim Baksh Lambardar Kharal Kalan…… dated 1/7/54.

Sd/-Tehsildar 2676/7/7/54

DIPALPUR N.T.Exchange

A photocopy of the original report (which is affixed on the last page of Jamabandi for the year 1946-47 of village Ram Parshad Tehsil Dipalpur Distt. Mintgomery and procured therefrom) has been placed on the file of this case.

In the certified copy of Jamabandi placed on file by petitioners the note given in remarks column has not been fully and correctly reflected.

Note existing in original Note shown in certified photocopy in

Jamabandi in Urdu Script Urdu Script.

Punjabi

While preparing the certified photo copy the words ‘w[;bwkB’’ and ‘‘ofj frnk j?’ have not been reflected. Photocopy of relevant page of original Jamabandi has been placed on file.

From the perusal of the above facts & clinching evidence it is absolutely clear that Mahant Manohar Dass Chela Mahant Maghi Dass possessing more than 7700 Kanals land in village Ram Parshad District Mintgomery never migrated to India and remained in possession of his land in Pakistan. He married there a Muslim lady Nooran after his conversion to Islam and had a son Munawar Ali and Manohar Dass died around 1952 in Pakistan itself. The land owned/possessed by him was never declared an evacuee property because he remained in possession of the said land till his death around 1952 in Pakistan and he had not migrated to India at the time of partition. Moreover the land in respect of which the present claim/petition has been filed was not the individual ownership of Mahant Manohar Dass as it belonged to a religious Seat (GADDI).

In view of the above factual position all the arguments of learned counsel for petitioner No. 2 are totally devoid of merit and argument regarding non-attraction of Rule 67-A is not going to be discussed as Mahant Manohar Dass never migrated to India till his death.

In view of the above factual position all the arguments of learned counsel for petitioner No. 2 are totally devoid of merit and argument regarding non-attraction of Rule 67-A is not going to be discussed as Mahant Manohar Dass never migrated to India till his death.

From the above it is absolutely crystal clear that a well planned and calculated strategy was worked out to grab the Govt. land. On 10.11.1997 petitioners got executed a WILL in their favour from some old person who impersonated as Mahant Manohar Dass Chela Mahant Maghi Dass resident of village Fattanwala and got it registered in the office of Sub-Registrar Muktsar at Sr.No.211 on 10.11.1997. This WILL was registered on the identification of Bikram Singh Lambardar of village Fattanwala. Bikram Singh Lambardar is the father of petitioner No.1 Bharpur Singh (now deceased). Other marginal witness of the WILL is Lakhwinder Singh s/o Balraj Singh resident of village Kilian-Wali, Tehsil Abohar. It is understood that some one who is still alive was presented before the Sub-Registrar Muktsar as Mahant Manohar Dass. After that certified copy of Jamabandi received from Pakistan relating to the land owned/possessed by Mahant Manohar Dass Chela Maghi Dass Sadhu Udasi ( village Ram Parshad Tehsil DIPALPUR District Mintgomery was obtained on 16.3.1998. In order to file the case on the basis of said WILL a death Certificate was secured in the name of Mahant Manohl1 Dass Chela Mahant Maghi Dass from the office of Local Registrar Births & Deaths Nagar Council Mukatsar by falsely reporting/showing at Sr.No.136 on 27.3.98 that said Manohar Dass had died 01 20.3.98 at Muktsar. In the totality of the circumstances the picture is very clear. As verified in July 1954 by concerned revenue authority (Tehsildar DIP ALPUR} OF Pakistan Mahant Manohar Dass became a Muslim and had married a muslim woman Mst. Nooran and was having a son also named Munawar Ali and he (Mahant Manohar Dass) died around 1952 in Pakistan itself. It was also specifically verified that in village Ram Parshad land in the name of Mahant Manohar Dass was never declared an evacuee property as original land owner Mahant Manohar Dass never left Pakistan.

From the above it is clear that the petitioners in connivance with some other persons got false documents in order to file this case with the motive of cheating the Govt. of its valuable of crores of rupees. Since on the office copy of WILL dated 10.11.97 maintained in the office of Sub Registrar Muktsar a photograph of the person who executed the WILL by Impersonating as Manohar Dass Chela Maghi Dass must be available and from this photograph true identity of this person can be easily ascertained in Police investigation. The Government may take a decision to initiate Criminal proceedings under relevant sections of Indian Penal Code against all the persons who planned & executed the conspiracy/criminal acts for attempting to grab the Govt. land by wrongly projecting that about 1100 Acres of land was left by a person named Mahant Manohar Dass Chela Mahant Maghi Dass in village Ram Parshad Distt Mingomery in Pakistan and petitioners are his legal heirs after his death on 20.3.98 at Muktsar under the WILL dated 10.11.97 executed by said Mahant Manohar Dass and registered at Sr .No.211 on 10.11.97 in the office of Sub-Registrar Muktsar .At the cost of repetition it is stated that they had planned and have attempted to defraud the State Govt. of crores of rupees in the shape of evacuee/custodian land.

In view of the above discussion the contents of this petition filed by petitioners on 26.5.98 as well as contents of statement got recorded in this court by petitioner No.2 Sandeep Singh on 11.6.2001 are totally false and a bundle of lies based on wrong facts and forged documents. The petition has absolutely no merit at all. Hence it is dismissed with the contempt it deserves. A copy of this order alongwith case file be sent to Financial Commissioner Revenue Punjab for information & necessary

Announced in open court.

26/06/2001

S.S.KHARA

Chandigarh

Managing Officer (HQ)

Hon'ble Revenue Minister

Hon'ble Minister-In-Charge
Shri. Gurpreet Singh Kangar

 


 

Special Chief Secretary, Department of Revenue, Rehabilitation and Disaster Mangement
Shri. Karan Bir Singh Sidhu, IAS

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