Decided on April 01,2021

Johone Ch. Marak Respondents


Biswanath Somadder, J. - (1.) This batch of three writ appeals, arise from three writ petitions i.e., WP(C) No. 353 (SH) of 2009, WP(C) No. 250 (SH) of 2009 and WP(C) No.251 (SH) of 2009, which were disposed of by a common judgment and order dated 10.09.2012, by the Gauhati High Court (being the erstwhile jurisdictional High Court of the State of Meghalaya). In WA No. 6 of 2013, arising from WP(C) No. 353 (SH) of 2009, which was at first dealt with by the learned Single Judge, the dispute was regarding the boundary between Depa Doratcha Akhing, a private community land and Chimabangshi Reserve Forest, which had been notified as a Reserve Forest, since 19.06.1883; as it appears, with boundaries notified on 29.01.1932. This particular dispute has already had more than its fair share of doing the rounds before this Court and from the records and materials available, the genesis of the subject matter of dispute, being Civil Rule No. 1004 of 1983, which was filed by the State against an order dated 17.08.1983 passed by the Executive Member-in-Charge, Revenue, GHADC, in connection with the land in dispute. In the said Civil Rule by order dated 19.08.1988, directions had been issued that the boundary be demarcated by the Deputy Commissioner of the concerned District and that status quo was to be maintained in the meanwhile. It is to be noted that this order was passed in Misc. Case No. 568 of 1983 arising out of Civil Rule No. 1004 of 1983. Subsequently, by order dated 09.06.1989, a direction was passed for handing-over physical possession of encroached land on the basis of the demarcation which had been made pursuant to the order dated 1988. However, in another connected Misc. Case being Misc. Case No. 1099 of 1988, an order dated 18.09.1989 was passed which is reproduced hereinbelow:- 'O R D E R Date 18-9-89. An order was passed on 18-8-89 to demarcate the boundary between Chinshangshi Reserved Forest and Depa Daracha Akhing No. 53. Sri Sen states that pursuant to this order some demarcation was done on 31-3-1989 and 1-4-89. In support of the submission, the learned counsel has produced a sketch map and also states that the Field Measurement Book would bear his submission. It, however, seems that this demarcation work was undertaken by Assistant Enforcement Inspector and some other officers of the Deputy Commissioner's Officer under the supervision of the Additional Deputy Commissioner. But then the Additional Deputy Commissioner himself is not very satisfied with the aforesaid demarcation work. It has, therefore, become necessary to properly demarcate the aforesaid two lands under the supervision of the Director of Survey, Government of Meghalaya. Let the Director of Survey, therefore, undertake the work, and if during the course of survey, it would be found that the survey undertaken earlier portrays the correct picture and has been duly undertaken, the Director would survey, otherwise a fresh survey would be done in the presence of all parties. I have passed this order after hearing Shri Sen, the learned Counsel for the Petitioner, Shri N.M.Lahiri, Learned Advocate General, Meghalaya for the State of Meghalaya who have agreed to receive this order. Let the survey be done within a period of two months from today. Let a copy of this order be given to the Learned Counsel of both the sides, within two days. Sd/- B.L.Hansaria,Sd/- W.A.Shishak JudgeJudge.'
(2.) Thereafter, it appears that many subsequent events unfolded which involved related proceedings and even attachment of the disputed area under sections 145 and 146 Cr.P.C. which eventually culminated in a Criminal Revision, being Crl. Rev. No. 25 (SH) of 1999, filed by the writ petitioner, wherein the orders passed in criminal proceedings were quashed and attachment orders were also vacated. However, the stalemate continued and in spite of repeated representations, possession of the demarcated portion of the said land was never handed-over to the writ petitioner, which compelled him to file the writ petition, being WP(C) No. 353 (SH) of 2009, out of which the instant appeal (WA No. 6 of 2013) has arisen. The prayer made therein was for handing-over possession of the land, based on the orders dated 19.08.1988, 09.06.1989 and 18.09.1989 passed by the High Court in Civil Rule No. 1004 of 1983 and the survey report of the Additional Director of Survey dated 22.12.1989.
(3.) In Writ Appeal No. 35 of 2012, arising out of WP(C) No. 250 (SH) of 2009, the appellant, as Nokma of Bangonggrri Akhing had instituted the said writ petition for restoration of the land allegedly encroached by the State respondents based on the report submitted by the Mouzadar of the Garo Hills Autonomous District Council coupled with a request made by the Executive Member i/c Land Revenue, GHADC, dated 25.11.2008 in this regard. This writ petition, by the impugned common judgment, came to be dismissed by the learned Single Judge on the ground that the matter involved disputed questions of fact.;

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