At, High Court of Punjab and Haryana
By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE RAJAN GUPTA
For the Appearing Parties: Narinder Luckey, O.P.Dabla, Advocates.
RAJAN GUPTA J.
( 1. ) This is a petition praying for issuance of a writ in the nature of certiorari for quashing impugned orders dated 27.04.1987(Annexures P-2) and 03.02.1988 (Annexure P-4) passed by The Additional Director Consolidation of Holdings, Jalandhar (respondent No. 1) Brief factual background of the case is that Kehar Singh (respondent No. 2 herein) moved an application before the respondent No. 1 after completion of consolidation proceedings in the village. In the application, Annexure P-1 it was stated that no service path had been provided for approaching his piece of land. After the omission came to the notice of Kehar Singh (respondent No. 2 herein) the instant application was moved. The matter came up before Additional Director Consolidation of Holding Jalandhar(respondent No. 1). He issued notice to Teja Singh, (petitioner herein). However, Teja Singh refused to accept the summons and did not appear despite service. Exparte proceedings were thus initiated. The Additional Director came to the conclusion that the prayer made by Kehar Singh (respondent No. 2) was genuine and thus, directed necessary amendment in the consolidation order thereby providing a path. It was thereafter, that petitioner filed a petition, Annexure P-3 before the same authority to set-aside the order Annexure P-2 passed on 27.04.1987. However, the said petition was dismissed with the observation that petitioner had been duly served with summons but he failed to appear before the authority. It was further observed that there was no ground to review the order dated 27.04.1987.
( 2. ) Aggrieved by the order, the petitioner has preferred this petition before this court. Learned counsel for the petitioner has argued that no opportunity of hearing was granted to the petitioner and thus, impugned order deserves to be set-aside. He further submits that Authority below wrongly came to the conclusion that service had been effected on the petitioner.
( 3. ) Learned counsel for the State submits that the Authority correctly arrived at the finding that a path was required to be provided in the land in question. He further submits that there is no ground to disbelieve the finding of the Authority below that petitioner refused to accept the summons. According to him, the petitioner was rightly proceeded against exparte.
( 4. ) I have heard counsel for the parties and given careful thought to the facts of the case.
( 5. ) It is evident that as regards question of effecting service on the petitioner is concerned the Additional Director Consolidation of Holding observed in his order that petitioner refused to accept summons and did not appear despite the fact that copy of summons was pasted on the main entrance of his residence. He thus, proceeded exparte against the petitioner. On merits, he found that claim of the petitioner was genuine as service path was required by respondent No. 2 to approach his piece of land and order was passed on 27.04.1987. The petitioner, however, moved an application on 27.01.1988 for grant of opportunity of hearing and the same was declined by the Additional Director on 03.02.1988. He further declined to review the order already passed and reiterated the finding that petitioner failed to appear despite service.
( 6. ) Learned counsel for the petitioner has not been able to show any ground for quashing the impugned orders. There is no ground to disbelieve the finding that service was effected on the petitioner but he failed to appear before the authority below. In any case this is a question of fact which cannot be decided in writ jurisdiction of this court. On merits it appears that an application was moved by respondent No. 2 for providing the service path to approach his land as there was a omission at the time when consolidation order was passed. Necessary amendment was thus, allowed by Additional Director vide impugned order Annexure P-
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2 dated 27.04.1987. Even otherwise, writ petition was admitted on 25.04.1988 and stay was declined at that stage. In case the path as sanctioned vide the impugned order was actually carved out and used, the same would be in existence for twenty years now. Thus, equity also demands that the same may allowed to remain as such. ( 7. ) In view of the above observations, I find no merit in the petition. The same is hereby dismissed.