1. This appeal arises out of an application presented by Musammat Lachminia, wife of Chaudhri Rudra Deo Narain Singh, in which she asked the District Judge of Ghazipur to hold an enquiry for the purpose of ascertaining whether or not her husband, Chaudhri Rudra Deo Narain Singh, was of an unsound mind and incapable of managing his affairs. The District Judge of Ghazipur required Chaudhri Rudra Deo Narain Singh to attend and be personally examined by the Court. He also considered a report of his mental capacity and condition after examination held by the Civil Surgeon of Ghazipur. The conclusion at which the Court arrived after such personal examination and after examining the Civil Surgeon of Ghazipur and Dr. Baldeo Singh, Civil Surgeon of Ballia, under whose treatment Rudra Deo Narain Singh had been, was that no symptoms were shown in consequence of which it was necessary to place Rudra Deo Narain Singh under the supervision of any Civil Surgeon. It, therefore, dismissed the application, and from this order of dismissal, the present appeal has been filed.
2. The grounds taken are, firstly, that from the evidence on the record Rudra Deo Narain Singh has been proved to be a lunatic, and, secondly, that the Court has erred in not taking the evidence produced by Musammat Lachminia Kuar, and also in not allowing her pleaders to examine her husband. We have heard the evidence which is on the record, viz., the deposition of the Civil Surgeon of Ghazipur, the deposition of the Civil Surgeon of Ballia. We have also considered the answers given by Rudra Deo Narain Singh to the questions put to him by the Court on six different occasions. There is nothing on the record which satisfies us that Chaudhri Rudra Deo Narain Singh is of unsound mind and incapable of managing his affairs. But it is contended that the Court ought to have taken other evidence and not have decided the case upon the very incomplete material before it, and our attention was called to the case of Harsahay v. Bhuttan 20 W.R. 55. In that case, Phear, J., in the course of his judgment, does say that it appeared to him and his companion Judge that a proceeding of this sort under Section 5 of Act XXXV of 1858, is in the nature of a proceeding preliminary to a formal enquiry; and later on he adds that the public enquiry is in substance nothing less than a public trial. In the case before the Judges who decided Harsahay v. Bhuttan 20 W.R. 55 they apparently had some material derived from the examination held under Section 5of Act XXXV of 1858, from which it appeared that the Judge ought to have gone further and made a formal enquiry. The Civil Surgeon, who was a witness before the Court in that case, gave it as his opinion that the alleged lunatic was labouring under considerable aberration of mind. We have nothing of that kind before us as the result of the enquiry winch the Court did undoubtedly hold under Section 5 of Act XXXV of 1858.
3. The Court appears to have carefully followed the procedure laid down in Act No. XXXV of 1858. It required the alleged lunatic to attend and be personally examined by the Court and also by the Civil Surgeon and the Court took into consideration the evidence of the doctor under whose care the alleged lunatic had been for some time past. There was nothing in the evidence given by the doctors and nothing in the answer given by Chaudhri Rudra Deo Narain Singh which rendered it necessary for the Court to go further. The medical evidence, indeed, militates against the idea of any further enquiry being necessary. The only portion of it upon which stress is laid is that persons suffering from insanity are under a very common delusion that there is a conspiracy to murder and poison them and that this delusion is generally directed against the dearest and nearest relations. In the examination that the Court held of Rudra Narain Singh, the deponent says that he is on bad terms with his wife and daughter and gives reasons for the estranged relations between him and his wife and daughter.
4. Our attention was also called to one passage in which he says that his Samdhi had got food given to the deponent spoiled by some satans. We do not think there was anything in all this that rendered is necessary for the Judge to place Rudra Narain Singh under the harassment of a public trial. In our opinion the law does not contemplate that a person alleged to be a lunatic should be exposed to the publicity and harassment of a trial unless there is some foundation for apprehending that he is incapable of managing his affairs. It by no means follows that because a man may have delusions upon one or two points that he is incapable of managing his affairs. If there had been strong grounds for the view that Chaudhri Rudra Deo Narain Singh was incapable of managing his affairs, we should expect to find those points set out clearly in the application. All that was before the District Judge was a very vague application in which no specific acts are recited beyond that Rudra Deo Narain Singh had made certain gifts of property to persons said to be old enemies of the family.
5. We think that the Court exercised a discretion in refusing to proceed further (sic) the case. If Musammat Lachminia wishes to have those deeds of gift set aside, she can do so in a suit properly framed for that purpose and not by the present application in which she sets out nothing specific or definite. We dismiss the appeal with costs which will, in this Court, include fees on the higher scale.