The Supreme Court was informed on Friday that the chief ministers of Odisha and Andhra Pradesh met on November 9 and agreed to form a committee to examine the controversy over a territorial jurisdiction dispute over 21 villages.
The government of Odisha, which has filed a plea with the Supreme Court seeking contempt action against some senior officials in Andhra Pradesh for notifying the panchayat polling stations in three villages in the “zone contested, ”told the Supreme Court that“ some positive development ”had occurred in the case. .
“The two chief ministers met on November 9, 2021 and they have agreed to form a committee to consider this matter,” senior counsel Vikas Singh, representing Odisha, told a bench of Judges AM Khanwilkar and CT Ravikumar.
The lawyer for Andhra officials said that although the meeting took place in a very cordial atmosphere, the “imminent specter” of contempt can be avoided.
He said the court can close the contempt and give the applicants the opportunity to go to court again.
“Contempt action has to be taken, what’s the difficulty. If there is no settlement, the contempt must continue. There is a clear direction towards maintaining the status quo. If this is not respected, it is the grievance. We have to deal with it if you can’t solve it, ”observed the bench.
The lawyer for Andhra officials said they had already said there had been no violation.
Urging the judiciary to postpone the case for a while, Singh said waiting for this case would help resolve the controversy.
“State authorities are interacting at the highest level to find an amicable solution. We will postpone the hearing of this case until the first week of January 2022, ”the magistrate said in its order.
More than five decades after the first standstill order on the territorial jurisdiction dispute with Andhra Pradesh over 21 villages, Odisha called on the highest court to seek contempt action against some southern state officials for have notified panchayat polls in three villages.
Naveen Patnaik’s government said the notification was tantamount to invading Odisha territory.
The dispute over territorial jurisdiction over 21 villages commonly referred to as “Kotia Village Group” first reached the Supreme Court in 1968 when Odisha on the basis of three notifications – issued on December 1, 1920, October 8, 1923, and October 15, 1927 – claimed that Andhra Pradesh had entered its well-defined territory.
During the duration of the lawsuit brought by Odisha, the highest court had ordered on December 2, 1968 to the two States to maintain the status quo until the resolution of the lawsuit and had declared: “there will be no more entry. or exit to the disputed territories. , on behalf of one or the other of the parties ”.
The action brought by Odisha under Article 131 (initial jurisdiction of the Supreme Court over any dispute arising between states or between the Center and the State) of the Constitution was ultimately dismissed on technical grounds by the more high court on March 30, 2006, and with the consent of both states, he ordered that the status quo be maintained until the dispute was resolved.
“The requesting State of Odisha invokes the contempt jurisdiction of this court against the alleged opponent for having deliberately and deliberately violated the order of December 2, 1968 and the judgment of March 30, 2006 rendered by this court in the context of the lawsuit filed by the State of Odisha. Orissa and the state of Andhra Pradesh, ”the plea reads.
Odisha’s government further asserted that administratively and otherwise it controlled these villages but that in recent times “the offenders have clandestinely committed the contested act of contempt by which the order of this tribunal was violated.” .
The government of Andhra Pradesh had told the Supreme Court that there had been no violation of its guidelines and that it had properly administered its own territories and had not violated the neighboring Odisha region.
Seeking to have the contempt plea filed by Odisha dismissed, the government of Andhra stated in its affidavit that Odisha was seeking to achieve indirectly what it failed to achieve directly since the Supreme Court in its judgment of 2006 dismissed the complaint filed by Odisha on the grounds that it was not sustainable under Article 131 of the Constitution.
“Without prejudice to the foregoing, it is very respectfully submitted that, assuming that there has been any undertaking whatsoever by the parties to the tribunal, it is settled law that an action for contempt cannot be brought against the respect of a breach of recognizance only if the court made an order on the basis of such an undertaking. There was no such undertaking in the present case, ”said the state government. in his affidavit.
“It is most argued that the State of Andhra Pradesh has not taken any action in violation of an agreement / directive. The State of Andhra Pradesh duly administered its own territories and did not encroached on the territory of the petitioner, “he said. .
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