EXECUTIVE OFFICER MANGALAPADY PANCHAYAT Vs. BEEPATHU
HIGH COURT OF KERALA
EXECUTIVE OFFICER, MANGALAPADY PANCHAYAT
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(1.) A question regarding the interpretation of some of the rules framed under the Kerala Panchayats Act of 1960 is raised in this appeal; and I think that the interpretation by the magistrate is erroneous
(2.) The respondent unauthorisedly occupied a plot of land which vested in the panchayat. A fine of R.100/- was imposed on her by the panchayat under R.3(2) of the Kerala Panchayats (Removal of Encroachments and Imposition and Recovery of Penalties for Unauthorised Occupation) Rules, 1964. The amount was not paid; and a prosecution was launched against her by the Panchayat. The lower court has acquitted her observing that for the non payment of the fine imposed under the aforesaid rule no prosecution is competent.
(3.) As already stated, R.3(2) of the Removal of Encroachments Rules authorises the panchayat to impose a fine; and under the Rules Regarding Demanding Amounts Due To Panchayats Where There Is No Special Provision (a sort of residuary provision) all costs, damages, compensation, penalties, charges, etc. and other sums which, under the Panchayats Act or any other law or rules or bye laws made thereunder, are due by any person to the panchayat, may, if there is no special provision in the Act or laws or rules or bye laws made thereunder for their recovery, be demanded by bill which shall be served on the person concerned and recovered in the manner provided in the rules for the collection of tax under the Act. Sub-r.4 of R.3 of the Removal of Encroachments Rules also refers to this residuary rule. Therefore, there is no doubt that a fine imposed under R.3(2) of the Removal of Encroachments Rules can be collected as if it were an arrear of tax.;
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