Contempt notice to petitioner

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 29 Sep 2017 10:49:48

Legal Correspondent,

In the matter related to petitioner disobeying the undertaking given to this court, the division bench of the Madhya Pradesh High Court comprising Chief Justice, Hemant Gupta and Justice, Subodh Abhyankar has issued contempt notice to Afsar Begum from Sadar Masjid Eidgah, Cantt., Jabalpur, and asked to file their reply before the court.

The division bench has heard the petition in Reference (Suo Motu) against Afsar Begum from Sadar Masjid Eidgah, Cantt., Jabalpur. Earlier, the division bench of MPHC had heard the writ petition filed by Afsar Begum, seeking quashing of the order dated on October 17, 2016, whereby, it was found that excess payment has been made to the petitioner. Counsel for the petitioner had undertaken on July 7, 2017 to deposit the excess amount within six weeks in view of the stand of the respondent in the return filed.

Thereafter, on September 4, 2017 neither the petitioner nor her counsel appeared, but it was ordered that the writ petition be taken for hearing after two weeks. Hearing on September 20 again, none was present on behalf of the petitioner.

In view of said fact, the division bench had said that “Find no cause survives in the present writ petition. It is, therefore, dismissed. It may be noticed that interim application was filed on June 19, 2017 wherein, the petitioner has sought two months’ time to deposit Rs 22,11,156. Such application supported by an affidavit of the petitioner.

Thus, we find that the petitioner has intentionally and willfully disobeyed the undertaking given to this court and, therefore, petitioner made herself liable for civil contempt within the meaning of Section 2(c) of the Contempt of Court Act, 1971. Let notice be issued to the petitioner as to why the proceedings under the Contempt of Court Act, 1971 be not initiated against her, returnable within four weeks. Office is directed to register the contempt proceedings separately against the petitioner and place before the court for appropriate orders as per roster.”

Hearing on September 4, 2017, inspite of giving an understanding to the court that the petitioner shall deposit the excess amount within six weeks, but neither counsel for the petitioner is present nor the amount has been deposited. The division bench has listed the case after two weeks. If the amount is not deposited within the time granted, this court may initiate proceedings for violation of undertaking given to the Court.


Hearing on July 7, 2017, counsel for the petitioner undertakes that the amount paid in excess shall be deposited within six weeks from today in view of the undertaking of the petitioner. The division bench had also heard on interim application, which is an application to implead the legal heirs of deceased respondent Dheeraj Bhai Chowhan. By virtue of the registered will, the daughter Reeta Ravindra Chawda claims to be sole legal representative of the deceased. The division bench had said that the application for impleading the legal representatives of the deceased represent Dheeraj Bhai Chowhan is allowed. Petitioner is directed to carry out the necessary amendment within a week.

The grievance of the petitioner is that the compensation amount of land acquired of 0.74 hectare was rightly disbursed to her. Whereas as per the respondents, the land measuring 0.67 hectares was acquired and, therefore, there was an excess compensation of Rs 22,11,156/-, the petitioner seeks stay of the recovery of said amount. Hearing on May 8, 2017, the division bench said that since there is a dispute that, as to whether the compensation has been paid in excess to the petitioner or not, we deem it appropriate to direct that the amount be deposited by the petitioner before the Registrar General of this court. The order as to where such amount has to be kept will be passed subsequently on the next date of hearing.