“The High Court was of the opinion that the Board of Councilors did not hear the matter and did not take a decision as required under Section 217 of the Act.”: Supreme Court, Part 1.
In context of the Civil Case No. 3657 of 2010, Debabrata Saha vs. Serampore Municipality & Ors., Justice L Nageswara Rao passed the judgment.
In this case, the appeal was filed against the judgment of the Calcutta High Court by which the Appeal filed by Respondent No.3 was allowed and the Writ Application filed by the Appellant stood dismissed. The Appellant had purchased the ground floor of a two storied building situated at 45/2/G.T. Road (West) Serampore on 14.08.2002 from Respondent No.3 by a registered deed of conveyance. Mutation was done in the name of the Appellant on 12.03.2003. According to the Appellant, Respondent No.3 who was residing on the first floor started construction on the roof of the second floor on 31.12.2003. The Appellant had made a complaint to the local police station and the Chairman, Board of Councilors, Serampore Municipality-Respondent No.2 herein.
The Appellant reiterated his complaint on 14.07.2004. As no action was being taken on the complaints preferred, the Appellant filed a Writ Petition before the High Court of Calcutta alleging inaction on the part of the Municipal Corporation in taking appropriate steps. The Writ Petition was disposed of by the High Court with a direction to the Board of Councilors (for short “the Board of Councilors, Serampore Municipality”) to consider the representations made by the Appellant on 31.12.2003 and 14.07.2004 within a period of four weeks from the date of communication of the order.
In the meeting of the Board held on 14.02.2006, it was decided that the permission for construction on the second floor was obtained by Respondent No.3 on the basis of misrepresentation of facts. Thereafter, an order was passed by the Chairman, Board of Councilors, Serampore Municipality revoking the sanctioned plan in favour of Respondent No.3. Being aggrieved by the municipal authorities in not taking action to demolish the illegal construction which was made pursuant to the revocation of the sanctioned plan, the Appellant filed another Writ Petition seeking a direction to the authorities of the municipal corporation to take appropriate action to demolish the construction.
The said Writ Petition was disposed of by the High Court directing the municipal corporation to initiate proceedings under Section 218 of the West Bengal Municipal Act, 1996 (for short “the Act”) for demolition of the illegal construction and to pass a reasoned order after giving a reasonable opportunity to all concerned. By way of implementation of the order of the High Court, a letter was issued by the municipal corporation to Respondent No.3 to remove the structure on the second floor.
Respondent No.3 filed a Writ Petition challenging cancellation of the building plan by the municipal authorities. A learned Single Judge of the High Court disposed of the Writ Petition and relegated Respondent No.3 to an alternate remedy of Appeal. Respondent No.3 filed an Appeal against the order of the learned Single Judge which was allowed by the Division Bench of the Calcutta High Court. This lead to the filing of this appeal.