Pending revenue recovery not a bar to transfer land
The court had asked the district collector to proceed with revenue recovery proceedings.
Oct 25, 2012
Source : The Times of India

 KOCHI: Pending revenue recovery proceedings shall not be a bar for sale or transfer of landed property, the Kerala high court has ruled.    

The ruling by Justice T R Ramachandran Nair came on a petition by Rimmy of Nayarambalam, who bought 12 cents from one of the partners of Jaya Tourist Home at Paravur. His application to change the name of the land owner in the revenue records, formally called mutation of registry, was rejected by the village officer of Kottuvally. The village officer also refused to accept land tax for the property.    

When Rimmy approached the high court, the tahsildar of Parur taluk filed an affidavit, contending that the person from whom Rimmy bought the land was one of the eight partners of the tourist home. They are yet to pay sales tax arrears amounting to more than Rs 10 lakh and its interest for the years 1986-87 and 1987-88, the department contended.    

The tahsildar pointed out that K S Mani, the partner who sold the property to Rimmy, had approached the high court earlier challenging the recovery proceedings. But the court had ruled against him, and asked the district collector to continue with the proceedings. The property in question was transferred to defeat this. Mani had no right to transfer the property as recovery proceedings were pending, the tahsildar submitted.    

However, the court ruled that the village officer is bound to accept tax and issue possession certificate even if recovery proceedings are initiated.    

There is no inhibition in the law relating to revenue recovery, that prohibits collection of land tax, and such an action won't be a hindrance to the recovery proceedings, the court ruled citing an earlier decision. The decision had also clarified that the question of the government getting the title over the property would be only if it purchases the property in revenue auction. If the sale under Revenue Recovery Act is in favour of a third party, the transfer of title will go accordingly, the court held.    

Pending revenue recovery proceedings shall not be a bar for sale or transfer of landed property, the Kerala High Court has ruled.    The ruling by justice TR Ramachandran Nair was while considering a petition by Rimmy of Nayarambalam, who bought 12 cents of land from one of the partners of Jaya Tourist Home at Paravur.    His application to change the name of the owner of the land in revenue records, formally called mutation of registry, was rejected by the village officer of Kottuvally. The village officer also denied to accept land tax from him for the property.    When Rimmy approached the high court, the tahsildar of Parur taluk filed an affidavit, contending that the person from whom Rimmy bought the land was one of the eight partners of the tourist home. They are yet to pay sales tax arrears amounting to more than Rs 10 lakh and its interest for the years 1986-87 and 1987-88, the department contended.    

The tahsildar also pointed out that KS Mani, the partner who sold the property to Rimmy, had approached the high court earlier challenging the recovery proceedings and the court had ruled against him.    The court had asked the district collector to proceed with revenue recovery proceedings. The property in question was transferred to defeat the recovery proceedings. Mani had no right to transfer the property as recovery proceedings were pending, the tahsildar submitted.    However, the court ruled that the village officer is bound to accept tax and issue possession certificate even if recovery proceedings are initiated.  

 There is no inhibition in the law relating to revenue recovery prohibiting collection of land tax and such an action won't be a hindrance to the recovery proceedings, the court ruled citing an earlier decision.    The decision had also clarified that the question of the government getting the title over the property would be only if it purchases the property in revenue auction. If the sale under Revenue Recovery Act is in favour of a third party, the transfer of tile will go accordingly, the court held.

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