Decided on October 03,1978

Sri Golak Behari Das Appellant
Jadu Sahu And Ors. Respondents


R.N. Misra, J. - (1.) THE landlords, a deity represented by the Hereditary Trustee, is the Petitioner and challenges the orders, of the appellate and the revisional authorities passed under the Orissa Land Reforms Act (hereinafter referred to as the 'Act ').
(2.) THE landlord made an application under Section 15 of the Act On 2.7.1974 to the Revenue Officer contending that the tenant (opposite party No. 1) had failed to pay the rent due for the lands in his possession for the years 1971.72, 1972.73 and 1973.74 in spite of repeated demands and, therefore, the same should be recovered and an order evicting the tenant from the property should be made. The tenant entered contest by filing an objection. On 16.12.1974, the Revenue Officer came to hold that the rent for the years 1971 -72 and 1972.73 had become barred by limitation provided under the Act. He, however, called upon the tenant to pay the rajbhag for the year 1973 -74 by 15.1.1975. On 16 -1 -1975, the landlord made an application to the Revenue Officer that there was failure on the part of the tenant to comply with the earlier direction of 16.12.1974 and as such an order of eviction should be passed and the arrears of rent should be recovered in accordance with law. After hearing parties on 22.5.1975 the Revenue Officer made an order under Section 15(2) of the Act requiring the tenant to cease cultivation forthwith. The tenant preferred an appeal before the Sub. Divisional Officer and the said appellate authority set aside the order of the Revenue Officer. The landlord moved the Additional District Magistrate in revision and the revisional authority declined to) interfere. This has led to the present application. The only contention advanced before us is that the order dated 16 -12 -1974 passed by the Revenue Officer directing the tenant to pay the rajbhag for the year 1973 -74 by 15 -1 -1975 had become final in the absence of any appeal against it. The stand of the tenant that he had paid seven, bharans and sixteen nauties of paddy in full discharge of his liability could not have been accepted by the appellate and the revisional authorities, inasmuch as in the original application of the Petitioner, the quantum of rent due had been indicated in the schedule thereof. The order of the Revenue Officer dated 10th December, 1974 had called upon the tenant to pay that amount by the specified date. Therefore, it was no more open to the appellate authority to hold that payment of seven bharans and sixteen nauties of paddy relieved the liability of the tenant created as per the order of the Revenue Officer.
(3.) THERE has been some confusion in the order of the Revenue Officer has also in the reasonings advanced by the appellate and the revisional authorities. There can be no dispute that rent for one year i.e. 1973 -74 was found due. It was open to the Revenue Officer in .exercise of the powers conferred under the Proviso to Section 15(2) of the Act to call upon the defaulting tenant to pay the arrear dues and not to make an order for ceasing cultivation. In the instant case, such an order had been made. As it appears, there was indeed a dispute as to what was the rent payable. The Revenue Officer had however, not determined the dispute while passing his order dated 16 -12 -1974. There is clear prohibition under the Act to recover more than the limit of rent provided by the statute. One -fourth of the yield is recoverable as rent subject to a prescribed limit depending on classification of land. We are inclined to agree with the contention of Mr. Rath for opposite party No. 1 that the proceeding should go back to the Revenue Officer for a determination as to whether payment of seven bharans and sixteen nauties of paddy discharged the obligation of the tenant in the matter of payment of rent for the year. In case the said quantity was sufficient to cover the rent due, there would be no scope for making an order for eviction. If, however, notwithstanding the payment of seven bharans and sixteen nauties of paddy, the tenant would still be in arrears, the order of eviction would be maintainable and the tenant would not be entitled to dispute the same.;

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