State of Orissa and Others vs Laxmi Narayan Das (Dead) Thr. L. Rs. And others

Case Number: Civil Appeal Nos. 8072 of 2010

Name of Judges: Hon’ble Judges Shreeniwas Oka and Rajesh Bindal 

Order Date: 12.07.2023

Facts of the Case:

  • A writ petition was filed by Laxmi Narayan Das (dead) through LRs, Satynarayan Das, Birenchi Narayan Das (Respondents herein) on 27.6.2008 challenging the order passed by the Settlement Officer in Settlement Appeal No. 537/90 dated 01.03.1990. 
  • The writ petition was filed more than 18 years after the impugned order was passed. The grievance raised was that the objections filed by the writ Petitioners during the course of settlement were not considered by the authority concerned and the land was recorded in the name of General Administration Department (GAD). Liberty was granted to the writ Petitioners to file representation to the GAD. 
  • The grievance was that the representation was filed, however, the same has not been decided. The stand of the learned Counsel for the State was also recorded that when final record of rights was published, it was open to the writ Petitioners to file appropriate revision application Under Section 15(b) of the Orissa Survey & Settlement Act, 1958 (for short, ‘the 1958 Act’). The same was not filed. There is no scope for interference in the writ jurisdiction. 
  • It was further submitted that the observation was made by the authority in the order referred to in the writ petition that the Petitioners can make representation to the GAD against the final record of rights, if so advised. The writ petition was dismissed. Being aggrieved by the same, intra court appeal was filed by the Respondents. 
  • The matter was taken in a different direction altogether. In fact, with the observations made by the Division Bench the record of right, which was prepared way back in the year 1962, was set aside. The direction was given for consideration of the representation of the Appellants before the High Court and allot them a suitable plot in exchange of their stitiban/sthitiban land.


The court held that considering the factual circumstances and the law laid down by this Court, the answer to the three issues framed in para No. 22 is as under: 

  1. There is a huge delay on the part of the Respondents to avail of their appropriate remedy against the final publication of record of rights. Hence, the Respondents are not entitled to any relief. 
  2.  On the application of principle of constructive res judicata, the writ petition filed by the Respondents after withdrawal of the civil suit was not maintainable as no liberty was granted. In case still filing of writ petition was to be justified, at least complete facts need to be disclosed for the purpose, which were missing. In the writ petition there was no mention regarding filing of civil suit earlier for the same relief and withdrawal thereof. A litigant can be non-suited in case he is found guilty of concealing material facts from the court or mis-stating the same. Hence, the Respondents are not entitled to any relief. 
  3. There was no order passed by the Government and conveyed to the Respondents for allotment of any land in their favor. Hence, the Respondents are not entitled to any relief solely based on the official noting’s. 
  4. For the reasons mentioned above, we find merit in the appeal. The same is allowed. The order passed by the High Court in Writ Appeal No. 108/2009 is set aside. Consequently, the writ petition filed by the Respondents is dismissed. There shall be no order as to costs.

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