S. Abdul Khader Saheb Vs. The Mysore
Revenue Tribunal, Bangalore & Ors  INSC 273 (9 November 1972)
MATHEW, KUTTYIL KURIEN MUKHERJEA, B.K.
CITATION: 1973 AIR 534 1973 SCR (2) 925 1973
SCC (1) 357
CITATOR INFO :
RF 1974 SC1940 (3,31,35) D 1977 SC1170 (7) RF
1986 SC 319 (11,12,13) R 1992 SC1888 (9)
Motor Vehicles Act (4 of 1939).
s.68-D-Intra-State route, what is Nationalisation of intra state route-If
proviso to s. 68-D(3) applicable Scheme of nationalisation, if prevails over
inter-state agreement-Scheme excluding all operators except two
categories-Appellant not within exceptions-If entitled to permit on inter-state
route,, when permit made ineffective on over-lapping portion.
Practice and Procedure-Revocation of special
In August 1964, the States of Mysore and
Andra Pradesh entered. into a reciprocal agreement to introduce stage carriage
services on the inter-State route from Bellary, in Mysore, to Manthralaya in
Andhra Pradesh, via Chintakunta, the border in Mysore State. By the Bellary
scheme which was approved by the Mysore Government under s. 68-D of the Motor Vehicles
Act, 1939 and which came into force in May,. 1964, it was provided that only
the State Transport Undertakings will operate services on the route Bellary to
Chintakunta to the complete: exclusion of other persons, except in regard to
the portions of the interdistrict routes lying outside the limits of Bellary
district. The existing, permitholders of inter-state routes were allowed to
operate such interState routes subject to the condition that their permit shall
be rendered ineffective by the competent authority on the overlapping portion
in the Bellary district.
In the present case, the Regional Transport
Authority called for applications for the grant of a permit on the interState
route in 1965 and the appellant was one of the applicants. The Mysore Revenue
Appellant Tribunal, in appeal, granted the permit to the appellant with the
condition that no passenger was to be picked up portion of the road overlapping
the notified route, of is Bellary to Chintakunta). The High Court, in a not
agree with the view of the Tribunal that even total exclusion from Bellary to
Chintakunta border, issued in respect of the overlapping portion of the or set
down on the scheme (that writ petition, did under a scheme of a permit could be
interState route by making that permit ineffective on that portion, and
remanded the matter to the State Transport Authority for reconsideration in
accordance with law.
Dismissing the appeal to this Court,
HELD :(I) There is no scheme of
nationalisation relating to the inter-State route from Bellary to Manthralaya
and the Bellary scheme is confined only to the inter-State routes, one of which
is the Bellary--Chintakunta route whose termini were within the State. It could
be 926 nationalised by the State of Mysore under the provisions of s.68-D even
though that portion overlaps the inter-State route from Bellary to Manthralaya.
[930 E-F; 931 C] B. H. Aswathanarayan Singh & Ors. v. State of Mysore &
Ors.,  1 S.C.R., 87, referred to.
(2) Since the scheme did not deal with an inter-State
route at all no question of the applicability of the proviso to S.68-D(3),
which requires the previous approval of the Central Government arises. [930 D]
(3) A scheme of nationalisation approved under s. 68-D would prevail over an
inter-State agreement in respect of an inter-State route. [929 G-H; 930 A-B] T.
N. Raghunatha Reddy v. Mysore State Transport Authority,  3 S. C. R. 780,
(4) In Thippeswamy's case (A I.R. 1972 S.C.
1674) it was held that according to the scheme all operators excepting those
mentioned in the scheme are excluded from the nationalised routes. The only two
exceptions were with regard to inter-district operators and the existing permitholders
on inter-State routes. Since the appellant did not fall within either of these
two categories it was not possible to accede to the appellant's contention that
because the scheme merely provides for partial ,exclusion it was open to the
authorities concerned to issue a permit for the route overlapping the
inter-state route. [929 E-G] Thippeswamy v. The Mysore Appellate Tribunal,
A.I.R. 1972 S.C. 1674 followed.
(5) In the application for stay filed along
with the application for special leave it was stated that special leave had
been granted in Thippeswamys case, but, by the time the petition for special
leave came up for hearing the appeal in Thippeswamy's case had been dismissed.
.But this fact was not mentioned to the Court. However, it was not a ,case for
revocation of special leave, because, there was nothing to show that a
reference was made to Thippeswamy's case, in arguments, when special leave was
granted, [928 BE]
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION : Civil Appeals
Nos. 1400 and 1401 of 1972.
Appeals by special leave from the judgment
and order dated February 29, 1972 of the Mysore High Court at Bangalore in Writ
Petitions Nos. 2561 of 1968 and 272 of 1969.
M. C. Setalvad, S. S. Javali and G. N Rao for
K. N. Bhatt for respondent No. 7.
L. N. Sinha Solicitor-General of India,
Shyamala Pappu and J. Ramamurthi for respondent No, 8.
The Judgment of the Court was delivered by
GROVER, J. These appeals have been brought by special leave from a judgment of
the Mysore High Court.
The facts briefly are that in August 1964 the
States of Mysore and Andhra Pradesh entered into a reciprocal agreement to
introduce stage carriage services on the, inter-State route from Bellary 927 in
Mysore State to Manthralaya in Andhra Pradesh via Chintakunta. In August 1965
the Regional Transport Authority, Bellary, called for applications for the
grant of stage carriage permit for the aforesaid route. The appellant,
respondents 7 and 8 and several others filed applications for the grant of a
permit. After complying with the necessary formalities required under the
provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1939,
hereinafter called the 'Act', the Regional Transport Authority granted permits
to the appellant and respondent No. 7 for one trip each day at its meeting held
in August 1966. By the time the Regional Transport Authority had issued the
notification calling for the applications. the scheme had been approved by the
Government of Mysore under s. 68-D of the Act. Under this scheme which was
popularly known as the 'Bellary Scheme' and which came into force with effect
from May 7, 1964 a portion of the road in question, via, from Bellary to the
district border (Chintakunta border) operators other than those mentioned in
the scheme were, totally excluded and only State Transport Undertaking could
operate the services. The Mysore State Road Transport Corporation which was the
State Transport Undertaking in Mysore, hereinafter called the 'State
Corporation', B. Subba Rao, the appellant and certain other persons filed appeals
before the Mysore State Transport Appellate Tribunal. After hearing the appeals
the Tribunal remitted the case to the Regional Transport Authority for a fresh
disposal. Aggrieved by the remand order the appellant, the State. Corporation
and others filed appeals before the Mysore Revenue Appellate Tribunal. This
Tribunal allowed the appeal of the appellant in its entirety and granted him a
permit for the interState route with the condition that no passenger was to be
picked up or set down on the portion of the road overlapping the notified route
of the Bellary scheme. The appeals of others were dismissed. Two writ petitions
were filed before the High Court, one by the State Corporation and the other by
B. Subba Rao challenging the, order of the Revenue Appellate Tribunal.
The High Court disposed of the writ petition
on the ground:
"When once on a route or a portion of
the route there has been total exclusion of operation of stage carriage
services by operators other than the State Transport Undertaking by virtue of a
clause in an approved Scheme, the authorities granting permit under Chapter IV
of the Motor Vehicles Act, should refrain from granting a permit contrary to
The High Court did not agree with the view of
the Revenue Appellate Tribunal that even under a Scheme of total exclusion from
Bellary to Chintakunta border a permit could be issued in respect of the
overlapping portion of the inter-State route by making that 928 permit
ineffective. The High Court consequently directed a remand to the State
Transport Authority to reconsider the matter and dispose of the same in
accordance with law.
Although in the special leave petition there
was no mention of a connected appeal which was pending in this Court, in the
application for stay,it was stated by the appellant that special leave had been
granted in the case D. M. Thippeswamy v. The Mysore Appellate Tribunal
Bangalore & Others(1) against the judgment of the Mysore High Court in
which a similar view had been taken with regard to the scope and ambit of the
Bellary scheme. It is .common ground that by the time the petition for special
leave came up for hearing before this Court that appeal had been dismissed.
This led to the State Corporation filing a
petition for revocation of special leave (C.M.P. No. 7383/72) on the ground
that the fact ,of the dismissal of Thippeswamy's appeal by this Court on May 4,
1972 had been suppressed at the time when the petition for special leave was
argued. An affidavit has been filed by Mr. S. S. Javali advocate who had
appeared at the special leave stage. He has stated that according to him
Thippeswamy's case was not relevant as the facts there were different and no
reference was called for or made to it in the arguments. It has also been
pointed out that in that very case by a subsequent order dated September 29,
1970 certain clarifications have been made.
This, it has been contended. now shows that
the decision in that case was not apposite for the purpose. of the present
appeals. We do not consider that any case for revocation of the special leave
has been made out and the prayer in that behalf is hereby declined.
'Bellary Scheme' was approved under S. 68-D
of the Act subject to certain modifications by the Mysore Government by a
notification date d April 18, 1964. It was provided in the scheme that the
State Transport Undertaking will operate services on all the routes to the
complete exclusion of other persons except in regard to the portions of inter district
routes lying outside the limits of Bellary district. The existing
permit-holders on inter-State routes could be allowed to operate such
inter-State routes, subject to the condition that their permits shall be
rendered ineffective by the competent authority for the overlapping portion in
the district of Bellary. In Thippeswamy's case (supra) this very scheme came up
for consideration. The question, however, which arose was whether the appellant
there was not an existing permit-holder when the State Corporation applied for
a permit for the route in question.
The following observations were made on this
"The question whether the 'Bellary
Scheme' provides for the total exclusion of all operators on the nationalised
(1) A.I.R. 1972 S.C. 1674.
929 routes or it merely provides for partial
exclusion is, in our opinion, wholly irrelevant. All that we have to see is
what the scheme says ? Whom does it exclude ? It is quite plain from the
language of the clause referred to earlier that all operators excepting those
mentioned therein are excluded from the nationalised routes. To the general
exclusion made therein, there are two exceptions. The first one relates to
inter district operators and the second to existing permit holders on the
inter-state routes. The appellant does not claim to come under the first
exception. For the reasons already mentioned his case is not covered by the
The argument of Mr. M. C. Setalvad for the
appellant is that no decision was given in Trippeswamy's case (supra) that the
Bellary scheme provides for a total exclusion of all operators on the
nationalised routes. He has also sought to distinguish that case by pointing
out that the controversy there was confined to the question whether the
appellant was an existing permit holder on the inter-state route. It has
further been stated that in the present case no permit has sofar been issued to
the State Corporation because it has failed to comply with certain provisions
and in particular with the requirement of s. 20 of the Road Transport Corporations
Act 1950. It may be that the facts are somewhat different here. The view which,
the High Court in the present case took was that after the Bellary Scheme had
come into force the operators other than the State Transport Undertaking were
totally excluded. In Thippeswamy's case (supra) also it is clear from the
portion already extracted from the judgment of this Court that according to the
scheme all operators excepting those mentioned in the scheme are excluded from
the nationalised routes. The two exceptions which have been made are only with
regard to the inter-district operators and the existing permit holders on
interstate routes. Mr. Setalvad does not claim that the appellant falls within
either of these categories. It is, therefore, not possible to accede to his
contention that because the scheme merely provides for partial exclusion it is
open to the authorities concerned to issue a permit for the route overlapping
the inter-state route.
The next point on which a great deal of
emphasis has been laid on behalf of the appellant is that an inter-state route
comes into existence by virtue of an agreement between the States through which
the route passes. The main provisions in that respect are to be found in s. 63
of the Act. Any scheme of nationalisation of a route by a State, as approved
under s. 68-D, cannot override the inter-state agreements in respect of the
inter-state routes. This Court has in T. N. Raghunatha Reddy v. Mysore 930
State Transport Authority(1) answered this question in the negative. It has
been held that the inter-state agreement is not law and to hold that an
inter-state agreement overrides Chapter IV-A would be to completely disregard
the provisions of S. 68-B of the Act. In other words a scheme of
nationalisation approved under s. 68-D would prevail over an inter-state
agreement in respect of an interstate route.
Sub-section (3) of s. 68-D of the Act has
also been relied upon by Mr. Setalvad. According to that provision the scheme
as approved or modified shall be published in the official gazette and the same
shall thereupon become final.
The proviso, however, says that no such
scheme which relates to any inter-State route shall be deemed to be an approved
scheme unless it has been published in the official gazette with the previous
approval of the Central Government. No scheme in the present case has been
approved under the proviso relating to the inter-State route in question. We
are unable to see how the proviso to s. 68-D(3) can be of any avail to the
appellant. The aforesaid provision be/comes material only when a scheme covers
an inter-State route. The Bellary scheme provides for nationalisation of an
intra-State route and not an inter-State route and the aforesaid provision can
have no applicability.
Although respondent No. 7 has not appealed,
counsel appearing for him has called attention to the observations of this
Court in B. H. Aswathanarayan Singh & Others v. State of Mysore &
Others (2) that an inter-State route is one in which one of the terminii is in
one State and the other in another State. Where both the terminii are in one
State the question of an inter-State route does not arise. If part of the
scheme covers routes which continue beyond the State and connect various points
in the State of Mysore with those in the other State it does not make the
scheme one connected with inter-State route. It is sought to be argued from
this that even if Bellary-Chintakunta route which is shown as item 34 in the
Bellary Scheme has been nationalised it does not make the scheme one connected
with inter-State route.
Stress has been laid on the example given
that the Grand Trunk Road runs from Calcutta to Amritsar and passes through
many States and any portion of it within a State can be a route for purposes of
stage carriage but that would not make such a route a part of an inter-State
route even though it lies on the road which runs through many States.
The above argument can possibly have no
validity so far as the present case is concerned. The scheme which was under
consideration in the decision relied upon was in respect of an intra(1) 
3 S.C.R. 780.
(2)  1 S.C.R. 87.
931 rate route. It appears to have been
argued that as the scheme was concerned with an inter-state route the approval
of the Central Government was necessary as required under the proviso to s.
68D(3) of the Act. This Court held that since the terminii were within the
State of Mysore the scheme did not deal with an interstate route at all and no
question arose of the applicability of the proviso to s.
68D(3). In the present case there is no
scheme of nationalisation relating to the inter-state route from Bellary to
Manthralaya. The Bellary Scheme is confined to the intrastate routes, one of
those being the BellaryChintakunta route. It may be that portion overlaps the
inter-state route from Bellary to Manthralaya but so long as it is an
intrastate route it could be nationalised by the State of Mysore under the
provisions of s. 68D. That having been done the decision in Thippeswamy's
case(1) (supra) will appositely apply.
In the result the appeals fail and they are
dismissed with costs, to respondent No. 8.
V.P.S. Appeals. dismissed.