There was an issue raised by the Estate Officer, under the provisions of the Public Premises (Eviction of Unauthorised Occupants) Act, 1971 (“the Act”), this was held in the judgement passed by a single bench judge comprising HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE RAVI KRISHAN KAPUR, in the matter VARUN JAIN V. THE UNION OF INDIA &ORS [W.P.A.10632 of 2021].
The facts of this case belong to pertain to a plot of land being Plot No. TE-137 is situated in Gole Bazar, Kharagpur, District-Paschim Medinipur and the premises was owned and managed by the respondent Railway Board. It s was used only for 2 commercial purposes by Noor Mohammad (since deceased).
They also mentioned that there was a sale of the premises by and between the said Mahendra Kumar Jain and his grandson, the petitioner no.1 for a consideration of Rs.5,00,000/-. It is alleged that the said Mahendra Kumar Jain also executed a Power of Attorney dated 30 January 2013 in favour of petitioner no.1 authorising petitioner no.1 to use the premises to run the said business in the name and style of M/s. Jain Traders. It was further alleged that the petitioner had written several different letters to the authorities seeking redressal of his grievances.
The valuable right had been accrued in favour of the petitioner because of the rent which was paid by the petitioner, a further letter which was dated 18 February 2021 the petitioner was held to be an “unauthorised occupant” and proceedings under the Act have been initiated against the petitioner.
It was submitted that the petitioner is not an unauthorised occupant and has a lawful right in the premises which has also been recognised by the Railway Authorities. On behalf of the respondent authorities, it was submitted that because of the clear embargo contained under the provisions of the Act, the petition was not maintainable and is liable to be dismissed. It is also submitted that the petitioner is now participating in the proceedings initiated under the Act and all questions raised by the petitioner ought to be adjudicated by the Estate Officer.
The fundamental was that the remedy under Article 226 of the Constitution of India is in general discretionary, Article 226 was never intended to circumvent statutory procedures. Moreover, a mere show cause notice does not infringe the right of anyone. It was only when a final order imposing some punishment or otherwise adversely affecting a party is passed can the rights of the party be said to be infringed.
They also mentioned that, the view that no exceptional grounds are warranting exercising any discretion in favour of the petitioner. The attempt on the part of the petitioner to raise the issue as to whether the petitioner is an ‘authorised’ or ‘unauthorised’ was worthless.
The court perused the facts and argument’s presented, it believed that – Because the aforesaid [WPA 10632 of 2021] was dismissed, however there was no order as to costs. The petitioner was free to urge all grounds which may be available to him following law before 5 the Estate Officer. The Estate Officer was directed to conclude the proceedings expeditiously following the law. It was needless to mention that the Estate Officer will not be bound by any observation or finding in this order.