On Thursday, the Supreme Court  bench consisting Justice Ashok Bhushan, R. Shubhash Reddy, and M.R. Shah, heard an appeal filed against the judgement of the High Court of Madhya Pradesh at Indore dated 10.06.2020 by which the writ petition filed by the appellant challenging the notice issued by the appellant challenging the notice dated 04.06.2020 issued by Additional Tehsildar, District Indore as well as notice dated 04.06.2020 issued by Building officer, Zone no. 09, Municipal Corporation Indore has been dismissed.

Shri Kapil Sibal, learned senior Counsel appeared for the appellant whereas Shri Tushar Mehta, Learned Solicitor General appeared on the behalf of the State. Shri Purushaindra Kaurav, learned Advocate General, appeared for Municipal Corporation, Indore.

Appellant’s Contentions

Shri Kapil Sibal claims the order of the Addl. Tehsildar for the recovery of amount of Rs.8, 80, 9725/- as unjustified as the appellant after purchasing the property, deposited the amount of deficit stamp duty as well as postdated cheques covering the amount of the penalty of Rs. 12, 80, 97,025/- by letter dated 20.11.2019, accepted by the Collector Stamps and letter dated 23.11.2019, and hence, no stamp duty outstanding. It was submitted that by the date on which Addl. Tehsildar issued the notice out of above said cheques, two cheques of Rs. 2 crores each had already been encashed by the State Government.

Shri Kapil Sibal further claimed the action taken for cancelling the building permission as unjustified as the amount of penalty was duly submitted by the appellant and was accepted by the collector of Stamps. He further submitted that orders of Municipal corporation inspite of the stay order imposed by the Court on the auction proceeding by Municipal Corporation, as illegal and malafide. He submitted that the property was purchased by the appellant by registered sale deed dated 23.11.2019 and there is no question of Corporation or anyone else claiming any title in the property, and no determination of title was pending in any Court of law.

Hence, he submitted that subsequent letters and actions taken by the Corporation as well as by the State authorities are only with the intent to harass the appellant and all actions are beyond their jurisdiction and deserve to be set aside by accepting the IAs filed by the appellant.

Respondent’s Contention

  • Shri Tushar Mehta, submitted that there was no error committed by the Addl. Tehsildar in issuing the order of recovery as the amount of penalty was outstanding, as there is no procedure or provision for accepting the amount of penalty by the postdated cheques as it claimed by the appellant. And the amount of penalty being outstanding against the property, mutation in the name of the appellant against the property as well as building permission has rightly been rejected. He further submitted that subsequent actions including the notices and orders brought by the appellant by IA No. 72517 of 2020 are all actions which has no relation to issues which have been raised in this appeal.
  • Shri Purushaindra Kaurav, submitted that notices and actions taken by the Corporation and other authorities subsequent to the decision of the writ petition cannot be made subject matter of challenge in this appeal, remedy of the appellant if any is elsewhere. He supported the order of the Municipal Corporation by which building permission earlier granted has been cancelled.

Key Highlights

  • This was Civil Appeal No. 3194 of 2020 arising out of SLP(C) No. 7990 of 2020.
  • The Supreme Court was exercising its Civil Appellate Jurisdiction.

Court’s Judgement

  • The Court observed that the High Court has rightly not with the order dated 04.06.2020 issued by the Addl. Tehsildar demanding an amount of Rs. 8, 80, 97,025/- which was outstanding on the above date, as postdated cheques cannot be approved as the facility to deposit the penalty.
  • The order of Collector of Stamps dated 22.09.2008 was modified to the extent that penalty imposed of ten times of Rs. 12, 80, 97,000/- was modified into five times the penalty i.e. Rs.6, 40, 48,500/-, and the appeals partly allowed to the above context. All the parties are to act in accordance with the said judgement.
  • In view the building permission being cancelled, the Court observed that the High Court had amply protected the rights of the appellant, as deposit being made by the appellant towards the penalty, the appellant is free to apply for building permission which is to be considered by the Municipal Corporation.
  • In the matter of the orders and notices issued by the Municipal Corporation and other State authorities subsequent to filing this appeal, those orders and notices issued have been brought on record by the IA No. 72517/2020 were all subsequent actions which were not subject matter of the writ petition before the High Court and cannot be taken into consideration in this appeal.
  • The Court gave the liberty to the parties to seek such remedy with regard to subsequent actions and orders as permissible by law.

The appeal was disposed of accordingly.


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