Mohamed Imranullah S.

For failing to protect interests of Adi Dravidars

MADURAI: The Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court has reprimanded the Tirunelveli district administration for not effectively defending a civil suit filed by a few private individuals to get hold of a property meant for establishing a burial ground for Adi Dravidar community.

Passing orders on a civil revision petition filed by a representative of the Adi Dravidar community of Baskarapuram village in Panagudi, Justice S. Nagamuthu said that he originally intended to impose heavy cost on the District Collector for failing to protect their interests.

But he did not do so because the Government advocate pleaded to show mercy and assured that such things would not be repeated in future.

Invoking Article 227 (power of superintendence over all sub-ordinate courts by the High Court) of the Constitution, the Judge set aside the decree passed by the Valliyoor Principal District Munsif on August 5, 2003 in favour of the private individuals.

He remanded the matter back to the lower court for fresh consideration after hearing all the parties concerned. Mr. Justice Nagamuthu said that the Nanguneri Tahsildar (Adi Dravidar Welfare), on November 6, 1998, initiated the proceedings to acquire the property at Baskarapuram for being used as a burial ground. A few individuals filed a civil suit in 1999 and obtained a favourable decree by wrongly stating that the officials were yet to acquire the property.

The then Collector failed to contest the suit by filing a written statement and even the Government Pleader did not choose to advance the arguments.