Order XVI Rule 1 of the Code is not meant for helping litigants who fail to adduce proper and relevant evidence to prove their case and rely solely on the basis of the testimony of public servants. The predominant object of this provision is to enable the Court to summon any witness if it feels that the evidence of such person is necessary for proper and effectual adjudication of the dispute involved in the suit. In a suit involving disputes over immovable properties between two private parties, the Courts shall not ordinarily summon public servants to support the cause of one party unless the Court itself is of the opinion that the evidence of such public servant is required to adjudicate on the seriously disputed questions arising in the suit.


HON'BLE SRI JUSTICE C.V. NAGARJUNA REDDY        

C.R.P.No.1697 of 2012

27-9-2012

Shaik Ujauddin

Veerabhadra Uma Devi and others

Counsel for petitioner : S. Syam Sunder Rao

Counsel for respondent No.1 : Sri B. Chinnapa Reddy

<GIST:

>HEAD NOTE:  

?CASES REFERRED:    


ORDER:
        This Civil Revision Petition is filed against order dated 16-3-2012 in
I.A.No.284/2012 in O.S.No.104/2008 on the file of the learned Principal Junior
Civil Judge, Mangalagiri.
        The petitioner filed the above mentioned suit for permanent injunction
restraining the respondents herein from interfering with his possession of the
suit schedule property.  Respondent No.1 is defendant No.3 in the suit.  She has
filed a written statement denying the petitioner's claim that he was granted
patta by the Revenue officials, and has set up the plea that the Tahsildar,
Tadikonda village and Mandal has granted patta in her favour.  Respondent No.1
has filed the above mentioned I.A. under Order XVI Rule 1 r/w. Section 151 of
the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (for short "the CPC") to issue summons to the
Tahsildar, Tadikonda village and Mandal, Guntur District, for giving evidence on
her behalf regarding issuance of patta in her favour and also to prove that the
Tahsildar has issued notice dated 13-5-2008 to both the parties.  The
petitioner/plaintiff, as respondent No.1, filed a counter-affidavit resisting
the said application.  The lower Court by a non-speaking order allowed the said
I.A.  Feeling aggrieved by the said order, the petitioner/plaintiff filed this
revision petition.
        In the first place, it needs to be mentioned that the manner in which the
learned Principal Junior Civil Judge, Mangalagiri, has passed the order under
the Revision is thoroughly unsatisfactory.  When the petitioner/plaintiff filed
a counter-affidavit and strongly resisted the application filed by respondent
No.1/defendant No.3, it is the duty and obligation of the learned Junior Civil
Judge to refer to the respective pleadings and record reasons for allowing the
application.  The order passed by the learned Junior Civil Judge is bereft of
any reasons whatsoever.  Such an approach on the part of a Judicial Officer
cannot be appreciated.
        On the merits of the case, I am of the opinion that respondent No.1 has
not made out any case for summoning the Tahsildar, Tadikonda Mandal.  The suit 
pertains to purely a dispute over immovable property between two private
parties.  Each of the parties is claiming right under purported pattas issued to
them by the Tahsildar.  As noted above, respondent No.1, while denying the plea
of the petitioner/plaintiff that the latter was granted patta by the Tahsildar,
had set up the plea that the Tahsildar has granted patta in her favour.  It does
not appear from the available record that respondent No.1 has filed any such
patta certificate.  If patta was granted in favour of respondent No.1, being an
official document, the same is admissible in evidence even without examining the
Tahsildar who is stated to have issued such patta.  It is not the pleaded case
of respondent No.1 that she has filed the patta certificate and that its
genuineness is disputed by the petitioner/plaintiff.  At least, in such a
situation, perhaps, there may be some justification for respondent No.1 to make
an application for summoning the Tahsildar to speak about the genuineness of the
patta certificate granted in her favour.  On her part, respondent No.1 has done
precious little in substantiating her plea that the Tahsildar has indeed granted
patta in her favour by filing the same and also any other revenue record in
support of such plea.
In my opinion, a private party, in order to substantiate his own plea, cannot
seek to drag the Government officials to the Court as that would involve waste
of precious time of the officials.  Order XVI Rule 1 of the Code is not meant
for helping litigants who fail to adduce proper and relevant evidence to prove
their case and rely solely on the basis of the testimony of public servants.
The predominant object of this provision is to enable the Court to summon any
witness if it feels that the evidence of such person is necessary for proper and
effectual adjudication of the dispute involved in the suit.  It is not as if the
lower Court, on application of its mind, has felt that the evidence of the
Tahsildar is needed for adjudication of the dispute involved in the suit.  In a
suit involving disputes over immovable properties between two private parties,
the Courts shall not ordinarily summon public servants to support the cause of
one party unless the Court itself is of the opinion that the evidence of such
public servant is required to adjudicate on the seriously disputed questions
arising in the suit.
        For the above mentioned reasons, the order under the Revision cannot be
sustained and the same is accordingly set-aside.  The Civil Revision Petition is
accordingly allowed.  This order, however, would not preclude respondent No.1
from filing the patta certificate stated to have been issued in her favour and
any other official record after obtaining the same from the authority concerned.
        As a sequel, interim order dated 10-4-2012 is vacated and CRPMP No.2271 of
2012 is disposed of as infructuous.
________________________  
Justice C.V. Nagarjuna Reddy
Date : 27-9-2012

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