STATE OF UTTARANCHAL Vs. GAJE PAL SINGH
HIGH COURT OF UTTARAKHAND
STATE OF UTTARANCHAL
Gaje Pal Singh
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Umesh Chandra Dhyani, J. -
(1.) SINCE the factual matrix and the principles of law governing the field in the above Government Appeals are the same, therefore, they are being decided by this common judgment and order for the sake of brevity and convenience.
(2.) GOVERNMENT Appeal No. 162 of 2002, captioned as State vs. Gaje Pal Singh and others, is being treated as leading case. Accused -respondents were challaned by Forest Range Officer, Ukhimath Range, Guptkashi for the offences punishable under Section 26(1)(h) of the Indian Forest Act, 1927 and under Sections 27(3) and 29 of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972. Complaints were filed by the Forest Range Officer with the allegations contained therein, that the accused -respondents constructed cowsheds and dwelling houses within the Reserve Forest. Not only the sanctity of the temple was jeopardized, but there was encroachment into the forest land as well as Musk Deer Sanctuary. When the Forest Department directed the accused -respondents to remove the encroachments, they refrained from doing so. The complaints were therefore, instituted for punishing the accused -respondents and for removing the unauthorized constructions made in the Reserve Forest.
(3.) ACCUSED -respondents were summoned to face the trial. Their statements were taken. They pleaded not guilty to the allegations and claimed trial. They stated that they have not made unauthorized constructions in the Reserve Forest. They also stated that the constructions were raised by their ancestors.;
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