Ryves and Lyle, JJ.
1. Bisheshar Sahu, father of defendants Nos. 1 to 3, obtained a decree for sale on a mortgage of certain property On the 9th of October, 1890. Bhawani Din, the mortgagor, judgment-debtor, after the decree, sold his equity of redemption to the plaintiff and left Rs. 770 with him out of the consideration money to pay off the mortgage decree. Bisheshar Sahu died, leaving three sons, namely, Ram Sarup, Beni Madho and Chunni. Ram Sarup was an adult and the two younger brothers were minors. After two infructuous applications to execute the decree, the plaintiff paid off the amount of the mortgage to Ram Sarup, and Ram Sarup applied, under Section 258 of the old Civil Procedure Code, to have the satisfaction of the decree certified by the court, and this was done on the 31st of March, 1897.
2. Thirteen years afterwards Beni Madho and Chunni applied to execute the same decree by sale of the property. The plaintiff, who alone had any interest in the property, was not made a party to these proceedings.
3. One Somai Ahir was brought on the record as a legal representative of Bhawani Din, the mortgagor judgment-debtor. The court executing the decree found that Beni Madho and Chunni had made their application within three years of attaining majority, and ordered the property to be sold, and sent the papers to the Collector for compliance. When the sale notification was issued, the plaintiff first became aware of what had been done. He applied to the Collector, objecting to the sale on the ground that the decree had been already executed; his application, however, was dismissed, on the ground that he was no party to the decree. Hence this suit.
4. The Munsif found (1) that the three brothers, Ram Sarup, Beni Madho and Chunni, formed a joint Hindu family and that Ram Sarup was the manager, (2) that the joint family was benefited by the payment of the mortgage money, (3) that it was neither alleged nor proved that Ram Sarup had misappropriated the money. He also held that Ram Sarup, as manager of the family, was legally entitled to accept payment and enter satisfaction of the decree, and that his act bound the joint family. He decreed the suit.
5. On appeal before the learned District Judge no question of fact was raised. Various legal pleas were taken, only one of which, however, is now in question in this appeal, and that is, whether the managing member of a joint Hindu family can have satisfaction of a decree recorded, so as to bind the other members of the joint family. The learned Judge says: 'I accept the finding of the lower court that Ram Sarup and defendants Nos. 2 and 3 were members of a joint Hindu family. The lower court has found that the head of Hindu family can enter satisfaction of a decree against himself and other members of the family. I am unable to agree.' This decision of the learned District Judge was given on the 17th of June, 1912, i.e., before the judgment of the Full Bench in Hori Lal v. Munman Kunwar (1912) I.L.R., 34 All., 549 had been published.
6. It seems to us that that decision concludes the question and is full authority for holding that the managing member of a joint Hindu family can execute decrees, on behalf of the family, and can receive payment and give good receipts, on behalf of the family, which are binding on the family. It is argued before us that the three brothers were joint decree-holders and that satisfaction entered by one could not bind the others, and reliance was placed on the case of Ganga Dayal v. Mani Ram (1908) I.L.R., 31 All., 156. That case was decided before the Full Bench case, and in any event is distinguishable from the present case, because it is stated, on page 160 of the report: 'It is further argued in the present case that plaintiff No. 1 must be deemed to be the managing member of the family, who would have a right to give a discharge. The powers of the manager of a Hindu family are undoubtedly very extensive, but there is nothing in the present case to show that the plaintiff No. 1 ever acted as the manager.'
7. It is conceded by the learned vakil for the respondent, that if in our opinion the lower court has come to a definite finding that Ram Sarup was the managing member of the family then the reasons given by the learned District Judge for dismissing the suit could not be supported, and this is obviously so, for if Ram Sarup was the manager of the family and as such received payment in full of the decree held by the joint family, and had satisfaction of the decree certified by the court executing it, then the decree was completely discharged and could not possibly be executed again. We have no hesitation in holding that the District Judge concurred with the Munsif and did find that Ram Sarup was the manager of the joint family of which he and his two brothers were the members.
8. In the court of the Munsif, Beni Madho and Chunni had denied that Ram Sarup was the manager of the family. They alleged that he had separated from them. On the evidence before him the learned Munsif came to a very distinct finding, as mentioned in the beginning of our judgment. In the grounds of appeal before the District Judge, no specific objection was taken to this finding, and the Judge himself states that no question of fact was raised before him, and he accepted the findings of the lower court This must include the finding as to the status of Ram Sarup, because the whole of his argument presupposes that Ram Sarup was the manager and acted as such.
9. We, therefore, allow the appeal, and, setting aside the decree of the District Judge with costs, restore that of the Munsif.