K.R. Mohapatra,J. -
(1.) This appeal under Section 100 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 has been filed assailing the judgment and decree dated 16th January, 2018 passed by learned Additional District Judge, Jharsuguda in RFA No.07 of 2014 whereby he confirmed the judgment and decree dated 1st February, 2014 and 24th February, 2014 respectively passed by learned Civil Judge (Senior Division), Jharsuguda in TS No.220/100 of 1995-2004.
1.1 For the sake of convenience, the parties are described as per their status in the trial Court.
(2.) Plaint averments in short reveal that Suit land in HS Khata No.93 and HS Plot No.121 (Gochar) measuring an area Ac.14.70 decimal of mouza Ekatali, which corresponds to MS Khata Nos.499 and 497 of Jharsuguda town Unit-I (Ekatali) in the district of Jharsuguda, was situated under a Gountiahi village under un-divided district of Sambalpur. As per the documents of administration, i.e., Wazib-ul-urj of said village, Lambardar Gountia of the village was entitled to reclaim and cultivate it and also to lease out the same to rayats/tenants for reclamation and cultivation without charging any Nazarana or Salami. The deceased plaintiff No.1, namely, Brundabana Sharma requested the then Gountia, namely, Gokulananda Patel @ Gountia to lease out the suit land for reclamation and cultivation by his joint family consisting of himself and his brother Banawarilal Sharma. Accordingly, on 12th October, 1944, said Gokulananda Gountia leased out the suit land to Brundabana Sharma. The family of Brundabana Sharma reclaimed the suit land and cultivated the same by raising different crops. They also constructed a house thereon and paid land revenue to Gountia. After abolition of the Gounti system with effect from 1st April, 1960, they continued to pay municipal taxes to Jharsuguda Municipality. By operation of law, the plaintiff No.1, namely, Brundabana Sharma became an occupancy rayat. Tahasildar, Jharsuguda, after due enquiry and verifying gounti patta granted in favour of Brundabana Sharma and also taking into consideration the possession of plaintiffs, settled the suit land in his favour in Revenue Case No.33/7-1 of 1962-63. The deceased plaintiff No.1 was also paying land revenue from 1960 till 1991. In Major Settlement, the suit land was recorded in the name of plaintiff No.1. There was a partition of the suit land in the family of the deceased plaintiff No.1, which was accepted by the Additional Tahasildar in OLR Ceiling Case No.2 of 1978.
(3.) After 27 years of order of Tahasildar in Misc. Case No.33/7-1 of 1962-63, the State of Odisha filed revision before Member, Board of Revenue, Odisha, Cuttack under Section 38-B of the Odisha Estates Abolition Act, 1951 (for short, 'the OEA Act') in OEA Revision Case No.37 of 1989 assailing order dated 24th December, 1962 passed by the Tahasildar, Jharsuguda in the aforesaid Misc. Case. The Member, Board of Revenue, allowed the said revision holding that the order passed by OEA Collector-cum-Tahasildar, Jharsuguda to be null and void. Being aggrieved, the plaintiff No.1-Brundabana Sharma filed OJC No.781 of 1993 before this Court. Taking into consideration that the Revision was filed 27 years after the land was settled in favour of the plaintiff No.1 and also other legal grounds, this Court set aside the order passed by learned Member, Board of Revenue. Assailing the said order passed in OJC No.781 of 1993, the State of Odisha moved the Hon'ble Supreme Court in SLP (Civil) No.15486 of 1993. Hon'ble Supreme Court set aside the order of this Court holding that Member, Board of Revenue has power to revise the order after 27 years. The plaintiff Nos. 2 to 4 were not parties to either the OEA Revision or in the writ petition before this Court or SLP filed before the Hon'ble Supreme Court. Hence, it is contended that the said order is not binding on them. It is further contended that since possession of the plaintiffs is open, continuous and for a period of more than thirty years, they have perfected their title on the Schedule 'A' land by adverse possession. Accordingly, the suit was filed claiming right, title and interest over the suit land and for confirmation of possession.;