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Sampat and ors. Vs. Ram Prasad - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtAllahabad
Decided On
Reported inAIR1932All499
AppellantSampat and ors.
RespondentRam Prasad
Excerpt:
- - in the circumstances of this case, we are satisfied that these persons are agriculturists and they occupy this house in that capacity......held that this was a house occupied by the judgment-debtors as agriculturists; but the subordinate judge held that it was not. the view taken by him is that the judgment-debtors are only shown to have one holding containing a number of plots, which has already been held to be no longer an agricultural holding, but to be a holding let mainly for building purposes. he argues from this that the judgment-debtors have ceased to be agriculturists and they cannot therefore claim that they hold the house as agriculturists. it does not appear to us that this is a strictly logical conclusion. it may be that the holding is no longer an occupancy holding and it is no longer a holding falling under the strict provisions of the tenancy act, because it has been leased to the judgment-debtors under a.....
Judgment:

Pullan, J.

1. This is a judgment- debtors' appeal from the decision of the Subordinate Judge of Benares, who allowed the appeal by the decree-holder against the order of the Munsif holding that a house belonging to the judgment-debtors could not be attached and sold in execution of the decree. The plea put up by the judgment-debtors was that this house was held by them as agriculturists and is therefore exempt from attachment and sale under Section 60(c), Civil P.C.

2. The Munsif held that this was a house occupied by the judgment-debtors as agriculturists; but the Subordinate Judge held that it was not. The view taken by him is that the judgment-debtors are only shown to have one holding containing a number of plots, which has already been held to be no longer an agricultural holding, but to be a holding let mainly for building purposes. He argues from this that the judgment-debtors have ceased to be agriculturists and they cannot therefore claim that they hold the house as agriculturists. It does not appear to us that this is a strictly logical conclusion. It may be that the holding is no longer an occupancy holding and it is no longer a holding falling under the strict provisions of the Tenancy Act, because it has been leased to the judgment-debtors under a lease which is not in accordance with the agricultural leases prescribed by that Act. But the mere fact that these persons have obtained permission to build houses on a portion of the land which was formerly their occupancy tenancy does not necessarily imply that they have themselves ceased to be agriculturists or that they no longer occupy this house in the capacity of agriculturists. The Judge himself has found in the connected case, which we have decided to-day, that vegetables and fodder are grown on the plots which are the subject-matter of the lease; and the Munsif pointed out in his judgment that there were a large number of rent receipts showing that the judgment-debtors did cultivation, in addition to the evidence of the patwari and other witnesses.

3. We have been referred to a decision of a Bench of this Court in the case of Jamna Prasad v. Raghunath Prasad [1913] 35 All. 307. In that particular case, it was held that a judgment debtor who was both a zamindar and a cultivator had been unable to prove that his main source of income was agriculture, and his decree-holder was permitted to sell a house which was not situated in the village in which the judgment-debtor resided. The only point on which that judgment has any bearing on the present case is the ruling that the burden of proof lay on the judgment-debtor to show that he was in the strict sense of the term an agriculturist. We consider that the judgment-debtors in the present case have been able to show that they are agriculturists in the sense that they come of an agriculturist caste and cultivate the soil, and it is not proved that they have any other occupation, except possibly the letting out of certain land for building purposes. The Judge himself does not ascribe to them any other profession. In the circumstances of this case, we are satisfied that these persons are agriculturists and they occupy this house in that capacity. We allow the appeal with costs, set aside the decree of the Judge and restore that of the Munsif.


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