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Dev Ara Hegde Vs. Vaikunt Subaya Sonde - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtMumbai
Decided On
Case NumberSecond Appeal No. 115 of 1916
Judge
Reported in(1917)19BOMLR281
AppellantDev Ara Hegde
RespondentVaikunt Subaya Sonde
Excerpt:
.....provisions of the codes of 1877 and 1882 is by its definition clearly intended to apply both to persons' who cultivate land as farmers, to use the expression of the district judge and to persons personally engaged in agricultural labour......to apply both to persons' who cultivate land as farmers, to use the expression of the district judge and to persons personally engaged in agricultural labour. turning to the dictionary meaning of the word ' agriculturist ' as showing what is the ordinary sense of that word we find in murray's dictionary ' agriculturist ' is a professed cultivator of the land, a farmer (for which agriculturist is also used).2. a person who earns his livelihood by tilling the soil can hardly be said not to be a professed cultivator of the land i do not think that in ordinary parlance there is any difference meaning between 'an agricultural population' and 'a population of agriculturists'. if therefore a professed cultivator of the land earning his remuneration from another employer owns a house in.....
Judgment:

Basil Scott, Kt., C.J.

1. Subaya Devappa Hegde who was the senior member of a family of judgment-debtors put in an application before the Subordinate Judge claiming that a house attached in execution should not be sold by reason of the provisions of Section 60(c) of the Civil Procedure Code as he was an agriculturist. The first Court decided against the judgment-debtor. An appeal was preferred by him to the District Judge who (referring to all the judgment-debtors including the appellant) says ' the defendants now live solely by agricultural labour. They have no lands either as owners or tenants. They work for others. They continue to live in the house, which is their ancestral house, from the time when they held lands of their own. They have ceased to be agriculturists (farmers of land) in the ordinary sense of the term and have become mere agricultural labourers. 'The term ' agriculturist,' as used in Section 60 of the Civil Procedure Code, is not defined in that Act and the question is whether it should be confined to persons who cultivate land in which they have an interest either as proprietor or tenant, or whether it can be extended to all persons engaged in the cultivation of land. If the policy of the Legislature is to provide for the efficient cultivation of the soil of the country, there seems no reason why the word 'agriculturist, ' if it is capable of that meaning, should not include persons engaged in cultivating the soil for remuneration, although they may have no proprietary interest in such soil. The Dekkhan Agriculturists' Relief Act, 1879, which has a number of provisions in pari materia with the provisions of Clauses (b) and (c) of Section 60 of the Civil Procedure Code and the corresponding provisions of the Codes of 1877 and 1882 is by its definition clearly intended to apply both to persons' who cultivate land as farmers, to use the expression of the District Judge and to persons personally engaged in agricultural labour. Turning to the Dictionary meaning of the word ' agriculturist ' as showing what is the ordinary sense of that word we find in Murray's Dictionary ' agriculturist ' is a professed cultivator of the land, a farmer (for which agriculturist is also used).

2. A person who earns his livelihood by tilling the soil can hardly be said not to be a professed cultivator of the land I do not think that in ordinary parlance there is any difference meaning between 'an agricultural population' and 'a population of agriculturists'. If therefore a professed cultivator of the land earning his remuneration from another employer owns a house in which he lives he should be protected from the attachment of that house by reason of the provision of Section 60 (c). We do not find that the leading Bombay case on the subject, Radhakiaan Hakumji v. Balvant Ramji I.L.R. (1883) Bom. 530 is incon-sistent with this conclusion. The learned Judges say : ' The exemption is of a house or building occupied by an agriculturist and this, we think, means a house dwelt in by an agriculturist as such and the farm buildings appended to such dwelling. It does not include other houses, which in one sense may be occupied; what is meant is a physical occupation, by an owner, of his house as a dwelling appropriate or convenient for his calling.' It seems to us that those words may be used to support the position of the defendants in the present case. The other cases to which reference has been made, Jivan Bhaga v. Hira Bhaiji I.L.R. (1887) Bom. 363; Pandurang Balaji v. Krishnaji Govind I.L.R. (1903) Bom. 135 and Jamna Prasad Raut v. Raghunath Pnisad I.L.R. (1913) All. 307 do not conflict with this decision. It is said that the defendant No. 1 who was the appellant before the District Judge is now dead, but that is no reason why in appeal we should not hold that the-attachment which was under consideration before the District Judge was improperly levied on his house.

3. It has been said, however, that the defendant No. 2 at all events is concluded by an order made in execution proceedings by the Subordinate Judge. But defendant No. 2 is interested with defendant No. 4, who has now come of age, in the same house and both he and defendant No. 4 live in the house as a dwelling from which they can carry on their calling. That house as a result of this judgment will be protected from attachment and therefore, defendant No. 2 will get the benefit of the order. We reverse the decree of the lower appellate Court and dismiss the Darkhast with costs throughout.


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