SMT. KHETEKESWARI DEBYA Vs. ATUL CHANDRA BARUA AND OTHERS
HIGH COURT OF GAUHATI
Smt. Khetekeswari Debya
Atul Chandra Barua And Others
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Baharul Islam, J. -
(1.) THIS appeal is by the plaintiff and is directed against the judgment and decree passed by the Subordinate Judge, Upper Assam Distircts at Jorhat in Title Suit No. 32 of 1959. The plaintiff's suit was for declaration of her right, title and interest in the suit land and for khas possession and mesne profits.
(2.) THE case of the plaintiff is that the suit land measuring 81 B. 7 Lechas was the self -acauired property of her father. Manuram. Manuram had a brother named Bhabadeb. They had been separated. Manuram came to the suit land situated in village Kaibartagaon, while Bhabadeb continued to live in the paternal village Kenduguri. Manuram had his wife. Chandra Prova, and two daughters - -Golapi and the plaintiff. Manuram went on pilgrimage and died there. Thereafter Manuram's widow. Chandra Proya and daughter Golapi, also died. Thus the plaintiff became the only heiress of Manuram. At the time of Manuram's death the plaintiff was a child of about 4/5 years. So Bhabadeb came to the suit land from Kenduguri and used to look after the plaintiff and the properties left by Manuram. In course of time Bhabadeb gave the plaintiff in marriage and used to possess her land on her behalf. After some time Bhabadeb also died leaving three sons - Lakhinath. Jiba Kanta and Deba Dutta. Subsequently Lakhinath died leaving his widow. Bhadreswari (defendant No. 1) and a daughter's son. Atul Barua (Defendant No. 10). Jiba Kanta also died leaving his widow Golapi (defendant No. 7) and a son. Tirtha Nath (defendant No. 9). Deba Dutta died leaving his widow Bhubaneswari (defendant No. 8).
The plaintiff's case is as stated above, that after Bhabadeb's death the suit land used to be managed and looked after by Lakhinath till his death. During his lifetime Lakhinath used to give her share of the produce of the land. But after his death, defendant No. 1 refused to give her (plaintiff) any share of the produce and set up her own title to the suit land. Plaintiff then filed mutation case No. 17 of 1957 -58 on 16 -4 -58. Defendant No. 1 filed an objection to the plaintiff's application for mutation, whereupon the revenue officer rejected her application for mutation. The plaintiff then on enquiry came to know that Lakhinath had sot his name mutated in respect of the suit land fraudulently in Mutation Case No. 417 of 1898 -99 by right of inheritance. She further learnt that Lakhinath. during his lifetime, had transferred the 'kha' schedule land to defendants No. 2 to 6 without the plaintiff's knowledge. She has, therefore, filed the instant suit for the reliefs mentioned above.
Defendant No. 9 has filed a written statement. His pleas, inter alia, are that the suit is barred by limitation, that it is barred under Section 154 of the Assam Land and Revenue Regulation (hereinafter called 'the Regulation'), that the periodic patta No. 133 of village Kaibartagaon had been settled with Lakhinath in 20 years settlement, that Manuram had no title in respect of the suit land and that Lakhinath never recognised the plaintiff as the owner of the suit land. It was further pleaded that Lakhinath bequeathed all his movable and immovable properties by a will to him (defendant No. 9) on January 19, 1935. and Letters of Administration thereof were granted to defendant No. 9 by the District Delegate on 17th June. 1940. It is further contended that at the time of the will and Letters of Administration, defendant No. 9 was a minor and the property Used to be managed by defendant No. 1 on his behalf on the strength of the Letters of Administration. He, therefore, contends that the plaintiff has no title to periodic patta No. 133. It is further pleaded that Lakhinath made a gift of the land of Periodic Pattas Nos. 132 and 499 to Chandra Prova, Mudai and defendant No. 5. He, therefore, pleads that the plaintiff has no title to the "Kha' schedule land He claims compensation Of Rs. 1,000/ - under Section 35 (A) of the Code of Civil Procedure.
(3.) DEFENDANTS Nos. 1. 7 and 8 filed a joint written statement and defendants Nos. 3 to 6 and 10 filed another written statement Defendant No. 5, Kalai died during the pendency of the suit and his heirs have been substituted as defendant 5 series. Defendants 5 (e) & 5 (f) are minors represented by their guardian ad litem. The guardian ad litem has also filed a written statement on behalf of the two minor defendants. These written statements are in the line and in support of the written statement filed by defendant No. 9 -;
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