Advocate Sushila
SUPREME COURT REFUSES TO INTERVENE WHEN HIGH COURT JUDGMENT TAKES A PLAUSIBLE VIEW

SUPREME COURT REFUSES TO INTERVENE WHEN HIGH COURT JUDGMENT TAKES A PLAUSIBLE VIEW

The Hon’ble #SupremeCourt of India in the case of State of Kerala and Another vs M/S Popular Estates (Now Dissolved) and another (Civil Appeal No. 903/2011) vide its Judgment dated 29-10-2021 held that power under #Article136 of the #Constitution of India cannot be exercised when the view taken by the High Court is merited with reasons.


In this case, Popular Estates (the “Respondent”) became the owners of 1534.40 acres of land upon a partition of a registered Firm’s assets, namely M/s Popular Automobiles. Meanwhile, the Kerala Private Forests (Vesting and Assignment) Act, 1971 (the “Vesting Act”) came into force with effect from 10-05-1971. Under Section 3 of the Vesting Act, all private forests were vested in the State Government.

The Forest Authorities attempted to take possession of large areas of land occupied by the Respondent, alleging that they were private forests and had vested in the State, under the Vesting Act. The Respondent moved two Original Applications before the Forest Tribunal (“Tribunal”) under Section 8 of the Vesting Act claiming a declaration that no part of the estate consisting 1534.40 acres was liable to vest in the State. They claimed that as the land was being cultivated it was exempt under Section 81 of the Vesting Act. The State opposed the Applications. The Tribunal decided the matter and held that prima facie it appears that the areas which were with the Respondent should really be vested as forest land in the State. The Tribunal therefore dismissed the Original Applications of the Respondent.

The Forest Department, State of Kerala (the “Appellant”), issued a Notification no. 4713/1977 notifying 100 hectares of the Respondent’s Estate as private forest, based on survey undertaken by the Forest Department. On 22-07-1987, the Custodian and Conservator of Vested Forests issued a Notification under Section 6 of the Vesting Act demarcating land belonging to the Respondent as “vested forests” under the Vesting Act.

The Respondent filed Original Applications against the Notification no. 4713/1977 before the Tribunal (OA Nos. 166 & 167/1990) and also filed Writ Petition before the High Court challenging the validity of the Notification dated 22-07-1987.

The Tribunal dismissed the Original Applications vide Order dated 30.10.1992 and held that in its earlier Order it had only dealt with the status of 100 hectares of the land and, therefore, with regard to rest of the land the State was empowered to issue a fresh Notification. This Order dated 30.10.1992 was challenged in an Appeal before the High Court by the Respondent.


To read more, please visit the link below:


https://theindianlawyer.in/supreme-court-refuses-to-intervene-when-high-court-judgment-takes-a-plausible-view/


#supremecourt #intervene #highcourt #lawyered

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