Civil Appeal High Court dismisses former IGPs wife’s appeal



An action was instituted by Maureen Seneviratne, President’s Counsel, in the District Court of Colombo on 21st February 1985, against Sita Rajasingham, wife of Rudra Rajasingham, former Inspector General of Police for inter-alia, a demolition of a part of building constructed by her illegally and unlawfully on a road reservation which was intended to be a turning circle over which she had a right of user to obtain access to the Public Highway. As a result of Sita Rajasingham’s illegal construction, Ms. Maureen Seneviratne P.C. has been deprived of the user of the road reservation, for over twenty years.


There were several trials de Novo in the District Court of Colombo, as a result of the Supreme Court in Appeal setting aside the Orders of the District Court in favour of Maureen Seneviratne. After the demise of Rudra Rajasingham, the former Inspector General of Police, Maureen Seneviratne moved the District Court of Colombo in terms of Section 406 of the Civil Procedure code, whereby she sought to withdraw the original action instituted against Sita Rajasingham and to institute a fresh action.


This application, although objected to by Sita Rajasingham, was allowed by the District Judge of Colombo who overruled her objections, by Order dated 10-05-2005.


Sita Rajasingham who was made a party to the fresh action filed Answer and participated in the trial which is presently pending before the District Court of Colombo. In spite of her active participation in the fresh action, Sita Rajasingham lodged an Appeal to the High Court of the Western Province to have the Order of the District Court permitting Maureen Seneviratne to withdraw the original action and file a fresh action in the District Court of Colombo, set aside.


The Appeal came up for hearing before the High Court of Western Province before Justice H.C.J. Madawala and Justice L.T.B. Dehideniya on 27.02.2013. Both parties agreed to dispose of the Appeal on written submissions, after which the case was fixed for judgment.


It was submitted on behalf of the Plaintiff-Respondent Maureen Seneviratne in the High Court that she has filed a fresh action whereby she has sought a declaration of title to the road reservation on a new deed as well as an order for demolition of the illegal structures put up by Sita Rajasingham, the 2nd Defendant- Appellant, which were shown by a Commission take out in the District Court of Colombo whereby Anil Peiris, Licensed Surveyor tendered plans and report which showed the encroachments made by Sita Rajasingham.


The appeal came up for hearing before the High Court on 27.02.2013, after 28 years, after the 1st action was instituted in the District Court of Colombo.


In the High Court of Colombo, it was brought to the notice of the High Court by Counsel for the Plaintiff-Respondent, that the Plaintiff-Respondent Maureen Seneviratne had filed a fresh action on an Order of Court in respect of the illegal and unlawful encroachment made by Sita Rajasingham which has been shown by a Commission take out in the District Court of Colombo whereby hereby Anil Peiris, Licensed Surveyor tendered plans and reports which showed the encroachments made by Sita Rajasingham.


The High Court of Appeal comprising justice H.C.J. Madawala and Justice L.T.B. Dehideniya dismissed the Appeal of Sita Rajasingham by Order dated 10th June 2013 and affirmed the Order of the Learned District Judge of Colombo dated 10.05.2005, permitting the application of Maureen Seneviratne to withdraw the original action.


A period of 28 years have passed since the dispute was first referred to the District Court of Colombo for adjudication and is still pending.


Mr. Romesh De Silva President’s Counsel with Mrs. Saumya Amarasekera Attorney-at-Law and Mr. Eraj de Silva Attorney-at-law instructed by G. G. Arulpragasam Attorneys-at-law appeared for Ms. Maureen Seneviratne, President’s Counsel the Plaintiff-Respondent.


Mr. M.U.M. Ali Sabry President’s Counsel with R. Dissanayake Attorneys-at-law Instructed by M/s. F.J. & G. De Saram Attorneys-at-law Appeared for Sita Rajasingham the Defendant-Appellant.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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