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Thursday, March 15, 2018

or. 47 rule 1 of CPC= The scope of the appellate powers and the review powers are well defined. The power of review under Order 47 Rule 1 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 is very limited and it may be exercised only if there is a mistake or an error apparent on the face of the record. The power of review is not to be confused with the appellate power. The review petition/application cannot be decided like a regular intra court appeal. On the other hand, the scope of appeal is much wider 9 wherein all the issues raised by the parties are open for examination by the Appellate Court 21) A fortiori, what was not decided in appeal by the Division Bench could not be decided by the Division Bench while deciding the review application. It is for this reason, we are also constrained to set aside the review order. 22) In the light of foregoing discussion, we are of the view that the orders passed by the High Court, i.e., (writ Court and Division Bench) are bad in law and cannot be legally sustained for want of any reason, discussion and finding on any of the grounds/issues raised by the parties in support of their respective contentions. We, however, make it clear that having formed an opinion to remand the case to the Division Bench, we did not apply our mind to the merits of the controversy. We, therefore, request the High Court (Division Bench) to decide the writ petition in accordance with law preferably within six months uninfluenced by any of our observations.

1
REPORTABLE
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
 CIVIL APPEAL Nos. 2749-2750/2018
(Arising out of S.L.P.(C) Nos.29397-29398 of 2013)
Sivakami & Ors. ….Appellant(s)
VERSUS
State of Tamil Nadu & Ors. …Respondent(s)
J U D G M E N T
Abhay Manohar Sapre, J.
1) Leave granted.
2) These appeals are directed against the final
judgment and order dated 13.03.2013 passed by
the High Court of Judicature at Madras in Review
Application No.77 of 2012 in W.A. No.868 of 2011
whereby the Division Bench of the High Court
dismissed the review application filed by the
appellants herein as not maintainable and also on
merits and order dated 02.09.2008 in WA No.868 of
2
2001 whereby the Division Bench set aside the
order dated 06.01.1997 passed by the Single Judge
of the High Court which was in favour of the
appellants herein.
3) These appeals involve a short point. Few facts
need mention infra to appreciate the point involved
in the appeals.
4) The appellants herein are the writ petitioners
before the High Court in the writ proceedings out of
which these appeals arise.
5) The appellants claim to be the owners of the
land in question admeasuring around 1.52 acres in
Survey No.142/1A situated at Ganapathi Village,
Coimbatore Taluk.
6) The land in question was the subject matter of
land acquisition proceedings under the Land
Acquisition Act, 1894 (hereinafter referred to as “the
Act”) in the year 1985 at the instance of State of
Tamil Nadu, which had issued notifications under
Sections 4 and 6 of the Act for its acquisition. The
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appellants, felt aggrieved of the acquisition of their
land in question, filed Writ Petition No.5220 of 1987
in the High Court at Madras and questioned therein
the legality and correctness of the entire acquisition
proceedings including the orders in G.O. Ms.
No.1119, Social Welfare Department dated
15.05.1985 and G.O.Ms. No.1536, Social Welfare
Department dated 18.06.1986.
7) The challenge to the acquisition proceedings
was on several grounds as is clear from the grounds
taken by the appellants (writ petitioners) in the writ
petition and the SLP.
8) The writ petition was contested by the State
wherein it defended the acquisition proceedings as
being legal, proper and in conformity with the
provisions of the Act.
9) The Single Judge, by order dated 06.01.1997,
allowed the appellants’ writ petition and quashed
G.O.Ms. No.1119 dated 15.05.1985 and G.O. Ms.
No. 1536 dated 18.06.1986.
4
10) The State felt aggrieved and filed intra court
appeal before the Division Bench out of which these
appeals arise. By impugned order, the Division
Bench allowed the State's appeal and while setting
aside the order of the Single Judge dismissed the
appellants’ writ petition. In other words, the
acquisition proceedings were upheld by the Division
Bench as being legal and proper. Against the said
order, review application was filed by the appellants
herein but it was dismissed. It is against these two
orders of the Division Bench, the writ petitioners felt
aggrieved and filed these appeals by way of special
leave in this Court.
11) Heard Mr. A Mariarputham, learned senior
counsel for the appellants and Mr. Thomas P.
Joseph, learned senior counsel, Mr. B. Balaji and
Mr. K.V. Vijaya Kumar, learned counsel for the
respondents.
12) Having heard the learned counsel for the
parties and on perusal of the record of the case, we
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are inclined to allow the appeals and while setting
aside the impugned orders, remand the case to the
Division Bench for deciding the writ petition filed by
the appellants afresh on merits.
13) In our considered opinion, the reasons to
remand the case to the Division Bench are more
than one, which are set out hereinbelow.
14) First, the Division Bench in Paras 4 and 5 of
its main order dated 02.09.2008 in W.A.No.868 of
2001 having rightly observed that the Single Judge
neither discussed any issue nor gave his reasoning
and nor even dealt with any of the grounds raised
by the parties in support of their case and yet
allowed the writ petition and quashed the
acquisition proceedings erred in not dealing with
any of the issues arising in the case, It is apposite
to reproduce paras 4 and 5 hereinbelow:
“4. From the impugned order passed by the
learned Single Judge, it would be evident that
the learned Single Judge, without discussing
the relevant facts of the case pertaining to
the writ petitioners (respondents 1 to 4 in
this writ appeal) and without analyzing the
relevant proposition of law laid down by a
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Single Judge of this Court in the decision
reported in 1994 Writ L.R. 764
(Seethalakshmi/Ramakrishnanda vs. Special
Tahsildear (LA) II, Bharathiyar University,
Coimbatore and another) and without
considering the question as to whether the
case of the writ petitioners, was similar to
the one reported in 1994 Writ L.R. 764
(supra), merely allowed the writ petition
based on the submission made by the learned
counsel appearing for the respective parties.
5. In the facts and circumstances, as
contended by the learned counsel appearing
for the appellant-State, the impugned order
passed by the learned Single Judge, can be
held to be not a reasoned order, erroneous
and not sustainable in the eye of law. We
accordingly set aside the impugned order
passed by the learned Single Judge.”
15) Second, in the light of afore-mentioned
findings, the Division Bench should have either
dealt with all the issues raised by the parties and
given its own reasoning on all such issues while
deciding the appeal or remanded the case to the
writ Court (Single Judge) for deciding the
appellants’ writ petition afresh on merits and to
pass a reasoned order dealing with all the grounds
raised by the parties in support of their respective
contentions.
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16) The Division Bench, however, simply allowed
the State's appeal and, in consequence, dismissed
the writ petition and upheld the acquisition
proceedings as being legal and proper and that too
without assigning any reason in support thereof.
17) Third, it was .0` for the Division Bench to deal
with all the grounds raised by the parties while
reversing the order of writ Court and to record their
own findings by assigning reasons in support of the
conclusion. It was, however, not done.
18) In our considered opinion, this appears to be a
case where the Single Judge (writ Court) allowed the
appellants’ writ petition without assigning any
reason and without dealing with any of the grounds
raised by the parties except placing reliance on one
decision for allowing the writ petition whereas the
Division Bench allowed the State's appeal without
dealing with any of the issues raised by the parties
in the writ petition and without assigning any
8
reason as to why the writ petition deserved to be
dismissed.
19) In our view, what the Division Bench was
required to do while deciding the appeal, it was
done by the Division Bench while deciding the
review application. We find that the order in review
application runs into 10 pages whereas the order in
appeal runs into 6 pages. We cannot countenance
such approach of the Division Bench while deciding
the appeal and the review application.
20) The scope of the appellate powers and the
review powers are well defined. The power of review
under Order 47 Rule 1 of the Code of Civil
Procedure, 1908 is very limited and it may be
exercised only if there is a mistake or an error
apparent on the face of the record. The power of
review is not to be confused with the appellate
power. The review petition/application cannot be
decided like a regular intra court appeal. On the
other hand, the scope of appeal is much wider
9
wherein all the issues raised by the parties are open
for examination by the Appellate Court
21) A fortiori, what was not decided in appeal by
the Division Bench could not be decided by the
Division Bench while deciding the review
application. It is for this reason, we are also
constrained to set aside the review order.
22) In the light of foregoing discussion, we are of
the view that the orders passed by the High Court,
i.e., (writ Court and Division Bench) are bad in law
and cannot be legally sustained for want of any
reason, discussion and finding on any of the
grounds/issues raised by the parties in support of
their respective contentions.
23) Since the matter is pending for the last three
decades, we consider it just and proper to remand
the case (writ petition) to the Division Bench for its
decision afresh on merits in accordance with law
instead of remanding it to the Writ Court.
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24) In view of the foregoing discussion, the appeals
succeed and are accordingly allowed. The
impugned orders are set aside and the writ petition
is remanded to the Division Bench for its decision
afresh on merits in accordance with law.
25) We, however, make it clear that having formed
an opinion to remand the case to the Division
Bench, we did not apply our mind to the merits of
the controversy. We, therefore, request the High
Court (Division Bench) to decide the writ petition in
accordance with law preferably within six months
uninfluenced by any of our observations.

………...................................J.
[R.K. AGRAWAL]
 ...……..................................J.
 [ABHAY MANOHAR SAPRE]
New Delhi;
March 12, 2018 

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