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Mohammad Abdullah Khan Vs. Ford and Macdonald Co. Ltd. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectService
CourtAllahabad
Decided On
Reported inAIR1930All124
AppellantMohammad Abdullah Khan
RespondentFord and Macdonald Co. Ltd.
Excerpt:
- - as i am leaving for england in a day or two, as you are well aware, i am unable to go into any more of your affairs. 1047; for the managing director, by his words, clearly implies that there is some money due to the plaintiff......been decided in this court in the case of juggi lal v. sriram [1912] 34 all. 464.4. as regards the letter relied upon, it was in these terms:as i am leaving for england in a day or two, as you are well aware, i am unable to go into any more of your affairs. the details of your account are with chiranji lal in our delhi office and if you will see him, he will be pleased to settle you up.5. it is contended on behalf of the plaintiff-appellant that this is a sufficient acknowledgment within the meaning of section 19, lim. act. in our opinion, the matter is concluded by the decision of the privy council in mani ram seth v. rup chand [1906] 33 cal. 1047. in that case, the words relied upon were:for the last five years, he (the respondent) had open and current accounts with the deceased.6......
Judgment:

1. This is a plaintiff's appeal. The plaintiff brought a suit alleging that arrears of pay were due to him and that he had paid money for and on behalf of the defendant company. He claimed in all on account of pay Rs. 185 and on account of money that he had paid on behalf of the defendant company the sum of Rs. 206. He also claimed a certain amount of interest on the amount due to him.

2. The pay was for November and December 1922 and for ten days in January 1923. The plaintiff left the employment of the defendant or was dismissed on 11th January 1923. On 9th January 1926 the suit was filed. Both the trial Court and the lower appellate Court have found that the claims on both heads with the exception of ten days' pay in January 1923 are barred by limitation. The plaintiff on appeal and the Courts below relied upon a letter written by the managing director of defendant company on 25th March 1924 as an acknowledgment. This would start the period of limitation running afresh.

3. The defendant also relied in the Courts below on an entry in the account books of the defendants, as saving limitation. Dealing with the last point first, it is quite clear to us that such an entry in account books, unsigned by the party against whom the money is claimed does not come within Section 19, Lim. Act and cannot save limitation. That matter has already been decided in this Court in the case of Juggi Lal v. Sriram [1912] 34 All. 464.

4. As regards the letter relied upon, it was in these terms:

As I am leaving for England in a day or two, as you are well aware, I am unable to go into any more of your affairs. The details of your account are with Chiranji Lal in our Delhi office and if you will see him, he will be pleased to settle you up.

5. It is contended on behalf of the plaintiff-appellant that this is a sufficient acknowledgment within the meaning of Section 19, Lim. Act. In our opinion, the matter is concluded by the decision of the Privy Council in Mani Ram Seth v. Rup Chand [1906] 33 Cal. 1047. In that case, the words relied upon were:

For the last five years, he (the respondent) had open and current accounts with the deceased.

6. Their Lordships said that it appears to their Lordships that the inevitable deduction from this admission is that the respondent acknowledged his liability to pay his debts to Moti Ram or his representatives if the balance should be ascertained to be against him.

7. This decision amounts to this that even, where it is doubtful on which side the balance would lie such a statement is sufficient acknowledgment within the meaning of Section 19. In this particular case which we have to decide, the words used are even stronger than those used in the case of Mani Ram Seth v. Rup Chand [1906] 33 Cal. 1047; for the managing director, by his words, clearly implies that there is some money due to the plaintiff. There is no question here of a possibility of some money being owed to the defendant by the plaintiff. The case of Mani Ram Seth v. Rup Chand [1906] 33 Cal. 1047 has already been considered by this Court in the case of Seth Lal v. Beni Prasad : AIR1925All340 . It was decided in that case that where the writer of a letter admitted the existence of a running account and stated that his representatives would compare the accounts and pay what is found to be due, that amounted to a clear admission of liability under Section 19. One of us was a party to the judgment in that case and neither of us sees any difference in principle between that case and the one under appeal. The appeal must be allowed and the judgment of the lower appellate Court set aside and the case sent back to the lower appellate Court under Order 41, Rule 23, for trial on the merits. The appellant is entitled to the costs of this appeal in any event.


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