Water Distribution Dispute under Rajasthan Irrigation and Drainage Act: Supreme Court Judgment

In a landmark case involving a water distribution dispute under the Rajasthan Irrigation and Drainage Act, the Supreme Court has rendered a significant judgment. The case revolved around the rights and liabilities related to water courses between the parties. The dispute, originating at the divisional level, made its way through various courts before reaching the apex court. Stay tuned to learn about the key aspects and outcomes of this crucial legal battle.


  • The appellant filed a suit challenging the order of the Appellate Authority which was dismissed
  • The Trial Court order was also challenged, and the appeal before the First Appellate Court was allowed
  • The dispute was taken to the Authorities under the Rajasthan Irrigation and Drainage Act of 1954
  • The appellant lost before the said Authority
  • The appeal is directed against the judgment and order of the High Court of Rajasthan in the mentioned Civil Second Appeal
  • The dispute between the parties involved water distribution to their fields
  • Private respondents filed a Second Appeal in the High Court
  • High Court set aside the judgment of the First Appellate Court
  • High Court upheld the judgment of the Trial Court
  • Civil Court was held to be unable to entertain or deal with such disputes

Also Read: Court’s Jurisdiction in Re-appraising Arbitrator’s Findings


  • Section 53 of the Act outlines the procedure for settling disputes regarding mutual rights and liabilities related to water courses.
  • Any person involved in a dispute can apply to the Divisional Irrigation Officer stating the matter in writing.
  • The Officer will then give notice to all parties involved and conduct an enquiry before passing an order.
  • The order issued by the Authorities under the Act will be final for any crop sown or growing at the time of the order, and will remain in force until overturned by a Civil Court decree.
  • The appeal against the order of the Divisional Irrigation Officer lies to the Superintending Irrigation Officer.
  • This implies that the Civil Court has jurisdiction to entertain and decide such a dispute.
  • Civil Court can only refrain from passing any order regarding crops sown or growing at the time of passing the order.
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Also Read: Contrary Directions in Issuance of Letter of Intent


  • Second Appeal to be treated as filed in 2008 and given priority
  • Matter remanded to High Court for decision on merits
  • Civil appeal allowed
  • Pending application, if any, disposed of

Also Read: Application for Stay in Civil Suit Rejected: Court’s Legal Analysis


Case Number: C.A. No.-006975-006975 / 2019

Click here to read/download original judgement

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