1. This is an appeal by the decree-holder and is directed against an order of the learned Subordinate Judge of Moradabad, dated 9th May 1931, refusing to set aside an auction sale on the petition of the decree-holder under Order 21, Rule 90, Civil P.C.
2. Gulab Singh held a decree against Rup Basant Singh and others in enforcement of a mortgage, dated 18th August 1923. In execution of this decree, the zamindari property of the judgment-debtors was advertised for sale and 21st July was fixed for sale. On that date, the officer conducting the sale had no time to, put up this property to sale. He continued the sale on 22nd July 1930 and the property was knocked down to Raghubir Saran for Rs. 2,700. Gulab Singh made an application for setting aside this, sale on the ground that there was material irregularity in publishing and conducting the sale and that the property had been sold for a grossly inadequate value. The lower Court repelled these contentions of Gulab Singh and dismissed the application; hence this appeal.
3. Under Order 21, Rule 90, Civil P.C., three, points have got to be determined : (1) whether there has been a material irregularity in publishing and conducting the sale, (2) whether the property has bean sold for an unreasonably low price; and (3) whether the injury to the judgment debtor or the decree-holder has resulted in consequence of the material irregularity.
4. The decree-holder complains that the sale officer did not record his reasons in writing for the adjournment of-the sale from 21st July to 22nd July. Under Order 21, Rule 69(1), Civil P.C. a statutory duty was cast upon the officer conducting the sale that in the event of his adjourning the sale he must record his reasons for such adjournment. No reasons for the adjournment were recorded in writing. We are of opinion that this constitutes a material irregularity.
5. Thakur Bijaipal Singh, the officer conducting the sale has been examined in this case on behalf of the auction purchaser. He has stated that he verbally announced to those persons present that the sale was to take place on the following day. The Court below has believed him and we do not see any reason for discrediting him. The fact however remains that he did not record any reasons in writing. It is also in evidence that he did not notify the hour when the sale was to take place. He states that it was customary with him to hold the sale every day at 2-30 p.m. He left it to the persons assembled before him to infer from this circumstance that the sale would take place the following day at the usual hour, namely at 2-30 p.m. This procedure seems to us to be irregular and clearly opposed, to Order 21, Rule 69, Civil P.C. Apart from these irregularities we find that in the sale proclamation there is no mention of any encumbrance upon this property. We have been told however that this property was subject to a prior encumbrance dated 3rd January 1918. This was another irregularity which seriously vitiates the sale proclamation. Considering all the circumstances we hold that there was material irregularity in publishing and conducting the sale.
6. The property which is the subject-matter of dispute was purchased by Gulab Singh under a sale deed dated 2nd October 1918 for Rs. 10,000. On 18th August 1923, Gulab Singh sold this property to Rup Basant Singh for Rs. 20,000. Out of the consideration, the vendee was not in a position to pay Rs. 6,000 to Gulab Singh, and so the mortgage bond in suit was executed in his favour. The Government revenue of the property in dispute is said to be Rs. 77. We have got no clear evidence before us to come to any conclusion as regards the real value of this property or why it increased so markedly in value in 1923. The property has been sold for Rs. 2,700. It appears to be a curious circumstance that the property which was purchased by Gulab Singh for Rs. 10,000 on 2nd October 1918, could have depreciated so much as to be of the value of only Rs. 2,700 on 2nd July 1931. We are of opinion that the property has been sold for an inadequate consideration. Considering all the surrounding circumstances, we have no doubt in our mind that the depreciation in value has resulted by reason of material irregularity in publishing and conducting the sale. We therefore allow the appeal, set aside the order of the Subordinate Judge, dated 9th May 1931, and remand the case to the trial Court with direction to execute the decree after a fresh proclamation in due course of law. We make no order as to costs.