NARAYAN CHANDRA DAS Vs. SUGAN CHAND SERAWGI
HIGH COURT OF HIMACHAL PRADESH
NARAYAN CHANDRA DAS
SUGAN CHAND SERAWGI
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(1.) This revision petition arises out of a proceeding under S.133, Criminal P.C. The proceeding under the said section was drawn up on the basis of a police report. It was alleged that the second party had obstructed a public path which was used by the first party.
(2.) The scheme of inquiry in a proceeding under S.133, Criminal P.C., is as follows :
(3.) When a person is served with an order under S.133, Criminal P.C. (i) The Magistrate shall ask him whether he denies the existence of the public right in question. In case of denial the Magistrate shall conduct an inquiry into the matter under S.139 -A before holding any inquiry under S.137 or S.138, Criminal P.C. At this inquiry the person shall have to produce reliable evidence in support of his denial of a public right. (ii) If the Magistrate finds that there is some reliable evidence in support of the denial, his jurisdiction ceases and the proceeding shall be stayed until the matter is decided by a Civil Court. All that the Magistrate has to see is if there is some "reliable evidence" which tends prima facie to support the existence of a private right. Reliable evidence does not mean evidence which definitely establishes the right claimed. (iii) If the person does not raise any question of private right or if there is no reliable evidence in support of such a right, the Magistrate shall hold an inquiry under S.137 or S.138. (iv) If the person fails to deny a public right or having denied the same, fails to adduce reliable evidence in support of the denial, then in the inquiry under S.137 or S.138, which follows, he will not be allowed to deny the public right. Nor shall any question in respect of the existence of any such public right be inquired into by any jury appointed under S.138. The only thing left will be to inquire whether the obstruction relates to the public path or not.;
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