The Supreme Court reiterated that the Judgment or Decree obtained by Fraud is to be treated as a nullity.
Respondent Kiran Devi (the original writ petitioner) was granted a license for running a fair price shop at Gram Panchayat Anta, District Kanpur Dehat. Various complaints were received by the Sub-Divisional Officer, Rasoolabad, District Kanpur Dehat, with regard to malpractices committed by the said fair price shop dealer.
As such, a site inspection of the fair price shop was done through the Regional Supply Inspector. In the site inspection also, various irregularities and malpractices were found in the running of the said fair price shop.
An inquiry was conducted by the SDO. Various statements were recorded. At the conclusion of the inquiry, the SDO found the charges to be proved and as such canceled the Fair Price Shop license of the respondent.
Advocate Udayaditya Banerjee, appearing for the appellant, submitted that though respondent was very well aware that during the pendency of the appeal before the Appellate Authority, the license to run the fair price shop was allotted to the present appellant, she has not only suppressed the said fact in the writ petition but has also made a statement which is totally false to her knowledge.
He contended that on this short ground of non-joinder of the appellant in the proceedings before the High Court, the present appeal deserves to be allowed.
Advocate Irshad Ahmad, appearing for the respondent, submitted that the proceedings against respondent were initiated on account of political rivalry.
The division bench of Justice B.R. Gavai and Justice C.T. Ravikumar stated that a necessary party is a person in whose absence no effective decree could be passed by the Court.
The court noticed that during the pendency of the appeal before the Appellate Authority, on a recommendation of the Tehsil Level Selection Committee, the present appellant, through regular allotment, was appointed as Fair Price Dealer.
“Even if a subsequent allottee does not have an independent right, he/she still has a right to be heard and to make submissions defending the order of cancellation” the bench reiterated.
The court found that the appellant was a necessary party to the proceedings before the High Court and held that the present appeal deserves to be allowed on this short ground.
It was observed by the court that though respondent was very well aware that during the pendency of the proceedings before the Appellate Authority, an allotment was done in favour of the appellant, she has averred in her writ petition that no third party allotment was made.
“It is thus clear that respondent has not only suppressed the fact about the subsequent allotment of the fair price shop to the appellant but has also tried to mislead the High Court that the fair price shop of respondent (the writ petitioner before the High Court) was attached to another fair price shop holder” the court said.
The bench found that the respondent has not only suppressed a material fact but has also tried to mislead the High Court.
The court quashed and set aside the impugned order of the High Court and affirmed the order passed by the Deputy Collector, Rasoolabad cancelling the Fair Price Shop licence of respondent and order passed by the Additional Commissioner (Judicial), Kanpur Division, Kanpur dismissing the appeal of respondent.
Case title: Ram Kumar v/s State of Uttar Pradesh and Ors.
Citation: Civil appeal no.4258 of 2022