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Smt. Krishnawati Devi and anr. Vs. Lala Harjas Mal Misra and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectArbitration
CourtAllahabad High Court
Decided On
Case NumberF.A.F.O. No. 320 of 1973
Judge
Reported inAIR1974All209
ActsArbitration Act, 1940 - Sections 39 and 41; Code of Civil Procedure (CPC) - Order 40, Rule 1
AppellantSmt. Krishnawati Devi and anr.
RespondentLala Harjas Mal Misra and ors.
Appellant AdvocateR.N. Singh and ;K.P. Singh, Advs.
Respondent AdvocateR.N. Bhalla, Adv.
DispositionAppeal dismissed
Excerpt:
arbitration - appealable order - section 39 of arbitration act, 1940 - appeal shall lie from those orders passed under the act - and from no others - provisions of code of civil procedure , 1908 not applicable. - - it was not urged that the exercise of power was smeared by bad faith or was influenced by extraneous considerations......a reference to arbitration was pending, even en the date, when the order for appointment of the receiver was passed. it appears that an application under sec-lion 20 of the arbitration act was moved by smt. lilawati, which was registered as suit no. 154 of 1971. it pertained to the firm tilak raj krishan kumar. that application was allowed, the arbitration agreement was ordered to be filed, and two arbitrators were appointed. the matter is said to be pending before the arbitrators. thus, the reference to arbitration in regard to the said firm is pending. the court, obviously, therefore, had the power to make an order for the appointment of a receiver. it was actually passed by the court on contest. that order falls within the scope of sub-clause (b) of section 41 of the act. it was,.....
Judgment:

T.S. Misra, J.

1. This appeal is directed against the order dated 4th August, 1973, passed by the 1st Additional District Judge, Varanasi, on an application moved by Smt. Lilawati on 30th August, 1971, under Section 41 of the Arbitration Act, for appointment of a receiver of the firm Tilak Raj Krishan Kumar with powers to take over the entire assets of the partnership, including its books of account and to take charge of the place of business of the dissolved firm and also to realise the assets and dues of the firm and discharge its pressing liabilities with the permission of the Court. That application was registered as Misc. Case No. 34 of 1971. It was contested by the present appellants. After hearing the parties and considering the circumstances placed before him, the learned 1st Additional District Judge allowed the application and appointed Sri Amar Singh Advocate, receiver of the dissolved firm Tilak Raj Krishna Kumar. He also issued certain directions as contained in the impugned order.

2. At the outset, a preliminary objection was raised with regard to the maintainability of this appeal on the ground that since the impugned order was passed under Section 41(b) read with the second schedule of the Arbitration Act, no appeal would lie under Section 39 of the Act. It was contended that the application for appointment of receiver was moved under Section 41 read with the second schedule to the Arbitration Act The order passed on that application was an order passed under the Arbitration Act. Section 39 of the Act makes provision for appeal against certain orders mentioned therein. As no appeal lies from an order appointing a receiver, it wax said that the present appeal was not maintainable. There is force in this contention.

3. Section 39 of the Arbitration Act hereinafter called the Act lays down that an appeal shall lie from the orders, mentioned therein, passed under the Act and from no others. It nowhere provides for an appealfrom an order passed under Section 41 appointing a receiver. Section 41(b) provides that subject to the provisions of the Act and the rules made thereunder, the Court shall have, for the purpose of. and in relation to, arbitration proceedings, the same power of making orders in respect of any of the matters set out in the second schedule, as it has for the purpose of, and in relation to any proceedings before the Court. The second schedule enumerates the powers of the Court as contemplated by Section 41, one of the powers being to pass orders for appointment of receiver.

4. In the present Case, it is not disputed that a reference to arbitration was pending, even en the date, when the order for appointment of the receiver was passed. It appears that an application under Sec-lion 20 of the Arbitration Act was moved by Smt. Lilawati, which was registered as Suit No. 154 of 1971. It pertained to the firm Tilak Raj Krishan Kumar. That application was allowed, the arbitration agreement was ordered to be filed, and two arbitrators were appointed. The matter is said to be pending before the arbitrators. Thus, the reference to arbitration in regard to the said firm is pending. The Court, obviously, therefore, had the power to make an order for the appointment of a receiver. It was actually passed by the Court on contest. That order falls within the scope of Sub-clause (b) of Section 41 of the Act. It was, therefore, passed under the provisions of the Act. In view of the provisions of Section 39 of the Arbitration Act, an appeal shall lie from those orders passed under the Act, and from no others, which are specifically mentioned therein. As stated earlier, an order for appointment of receiver is not mentioned anywhere in Section 39 of the Act. Hence, no appeal from the order appointing a receiver would lie.

5. It was, however, urged by the learned Counsel for the appellants that the case would be covered by the provisions of Sub-clause (a) of Section 41 of the Arbitration Act, which make the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure applicable to all the proceedings before the Court. The suit filed under Section 20 of the Arbitration Act was, no doubt, registered as suit No. 154 of 1971; but the application under Section 41 of the Act was not moved in that suit. It was moved under Section 41 of the Act as a separate proceeding and was registered as Misc. Case No. 34 of 1971. Sub-clause (b) of Section 41 of the Act read with the second schedule confers power on the court to appoint a receiver, whereas Sub-clause (a) of that Section regulates the procedure to be followed in disposing of an application for appointment of a receiver. The appointment of the receiver, in the instant case, was not made, nor could be made under the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure in as much as the power to appoint receiver is contained in Sub-clause (b) of Section 41read with the second schedule of the Act. The provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure could not, therefore, be taken into aid to contend that the present appeal is maintainable, in fact, the order was passed by the court under Section 41(b), and not under Order 40, Rule 1 of the Code of Civil Procedure. That being so. the appeal was not governed by the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure. The decision in the case of Krishen v. Radha Kishen : AIR1952All652 , cited by the learned Counsel for the appellants, does not, in our view, support his contention. Rather it militates against his contention. In that case, the applicants had made an application for the setting aside of an award under Section 33 of the Arbitration Act. That application was allowed ex parte. Later on, the ex parts order was set aside and a fresh date for final hearing was fixed. Subsequently, that application was again dismissed. Then the applicants applied for setting aside the ex parte order. The court rejected that application. The applicants then filed an appeal in the lower appellate court against the dismissal of their application for restoration. The Lower Appellate Court dismissed the appeal and then a revision was preferred against that order in this Court. In these circumstances, it was held that as the order was passed under the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure, under Sub-clause (a) of Section41 of the Act the appeal was maintainable before the appellate court below, and the revision was, therefore, maintainable. Here, in the instant case, the impugned order for the appointment of the receiver was not passed under the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure, but it was passed under Sub-clause (b) of Section 41 of the Arbitration Act read with the second schedule to the said Act. Since Section 39 of the Act does not provide for an appeal from the order appointing a receiver, we are of the view that this appeal is not maintainable.

6. The learned Counsel for the appellants then requested that the present appeal may be treated as a revision. Even if this appeal is treated as a revision we do not find any jurisdictional error in the impugned order warranting interference under Section 115 of the Code of Civil Procedure. Admittedly, reference to arbitration had been made by the court below on an application moved under Section 20 of the Arbitration Act. That reference, as stated earlier, is still pending. Sub-section (4) of Section 31 of the Arbitration Act provides that notwithstanding anything contained elsewhere in this Act or in any other law for the time being in force, where in any reference any application under this Act has been made in a court competent to entertain it, that court alone shall have jurisdiction over the arbitration proceedings and all subsequent applications arising out of that reference and the arbitration proceedings shall be made in that Court and in no other court. The application for the appointment of receiver could,therefore, be made only in the court, in which the application under Section 20 of the Arbitration Act had been moved, and the order could be passed by that court and by no other court. It is not disputed that the application for appointment of receiver was moved in that court, in which the application under Section 20 of the Arbitration Act had been filed. The court below had, therefore, the jurisdiction to pass the impugned order. There is nothing to show that the court below exercised its jurisdiction illegally or with material irregularity. It was not urged that the exercise of power was smeared by bad faith or was influenced by extraneous considerations. No case has thus been made out for interference with the impugned order under Section 115, Civil Procedure Code.

7. As a result of the discussion above, this appeal fails and is dismissed, but in the circumstances of the case, we direct the parties to bear their own costs. We may, however, observe, in passing, that the appellants may move the court below by suitable application, if and when they deem it necessary, for the discharge of the receiver on such grounds as may be available to them. The record be sent back to the court below forthwith.


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