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Piare Lal Vs. Bhagwan Das and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtAllahabad
Decided On
Reported inAIR1933All295; 145Ind.Cas.436
AppellantPiare Lal
RespondentBhagwan Das and anr.
Cases ReferredAmir Hasan Khan v. Sheo Bakhsh Singh
Excerpt:
- - 8. will it not be an abuse of the process of the court, if the applicant is called upon to make a fresh application for permission to sue as a pauper simply because his first application was badly verified. in the result, we allow the applications, set aside the orders complained of and remand the cases to the court below and direct it to give the applicant a sufficient opportunity to enable him to correct the verification of his petitions......that the applicant peare lal filed four applications in the same court for permission to sue as a pauper. the applications were directed against different opposite parties. the court below came to the conclusion that the applicant was entitled to sue as a pauper, but was of opinion that his applications must be rejected because the verification at the foot of the applications was not according to law. the applications did, as they should, take the form of a plaint and contain the necessary allegations that were required to be made in a plaint but were not so verified as a plaint should be. the law (order 6, rule 15, civil p.c.) says:the person verifying shall specify, by reference to the numbered paragraphs of the pleading, what he verifies of his own knowledge and what he verifies upon.....
Judgment:

Mukerji, Ag. C.J.

1. These are four applications in revision and are directed against four orders by which the petitions of the applicant for permission to sue as a paper have been rejected. It appears that the applicant Peare Lal filed four applications in the same Court for permission to sue as a pauper. The applications were directed against different opposite parties. The Court below came to the conclusion that the applicant was entitled to sue as a pauper, but was of opinion that his applications must be rejected because the verification at the foot of the applications was not according to law. The applications did, as they should, take the form of a plaint and contain the necessary allegations that were required to be made in a plaint but were not so verified as a plaint should be. The law (Order 6, Rule 15, Civil P.C.) says:

The person verifying shall specify, by reference to the numbered paragraphs of the pleading, what he verifies of his own knowledge and what he verifies upon information received and believed to be true.

2. The verification contained in the several petitions was to the effect that the statements made were true to the knowledge and belief of the applicant. The applicant did not say which of the statements he verified from his personal knowledge and which he verified from information received and believed to be true. Order 33, Rule 5 says that:

The Court shall reject an application for permission to sue as a pauper, (a) where it is not framed and presented in the manner prescribed by Rules 2 and 3, etc.

3. Rule 2 referred to states that:

every application for permission to sue as a pauper shall be signed and verified in the manner proscribed for the signing and verification of pleadings.

4. This means that the verification should be in the manner indicated in Order 6, Rule 15(2), Civil P.C. The applicant has come up before us in revision and says that the Court ought to have directed an amendment of the verification and that if he had iailed to correct the verification, then certainly it was open to the Court below to dismiss his application. On behalf of the respondents (some of whom have not appeared) it is contended that no revision lies and the petitions in revision cannot be maintained.

5. It has been held in several cases in this Court that, where a Court admits an application to sue as a pauper and thereby converts the application into a plaint, no revision is maintainable to contest the validity of the order accepting the application for permission to sue as a pauper; but where the order is one rejecting the application and thereby putting an end to the proceedings before the Court below, a revision is maintainable. The latest case on this point is Sumatra Devi v. Hazari Lal : AIR1930All758 . Then, it was argued by the learned Counsel for the respondent that the power of the High Court to interfere in revision is confined to a case of jurisdiction alone and the High Court cannot interfere if the Court below has committed an error of law or of fact. There can be no doubt that this is a correct view of the law so far as it goes and in the case of a mere mistake of fact or of law by a subordinate Court, the High Court cannot interfere with it in revision. Such was a case which went up before their Lordships of the Privy Council: see Amir Hasan Khan v. Sheo Bakhsh Singh (1885) 11 Cal 6. In that case the question was whether the decision of the Court below that the suit was not barred by Sections 13 and 43 of 1882 was a correct decision. The Judicial Commissioner of Oudh acting as a High. Court decided that the suit was barred and their Lordships of the Privy Council held that the High Court had overstepped its function. Section 115(c) states that where in the exercise of its jurisdiction a Court acts illegally or with material irregularity the High Court may interfere. This means that where the subordinate Court is possessed of jurisdiction and, in the exercise of it, acts illegally or with material irregularity no revision is maintainable. Acting illegally or with material irregularity does not mean committing an error in the decision arrived at; but where a procedure has been adopted, which is grossly improper and which has led to a denial of justice it may surely be said that the Court has acted with material irregularity in the exercise of its jurisdiction. Accordingly it has been held that where an award has been made and a Court upholds it without giving the parties a chance to contest the validity of the award, the High Court can interfere, although it was within the competence of the Court below to decide that the award was a valid one. For the reasons given above we see no ground for limiting our authority to interfere with the judgment to a case in which a question of jurisdiction has arisen.

6. Now, coming to the merits of the case, we find that the learned Munsif did not exercise his authority, which he was bound to exercise in view of Section 153, Civil P.C. Sections 151, 152 and 153 are very salutary provisions of law and are meant to invest the Courts with authority to see that the object for which Courts exist is earned out and that the merest technicality may not be allowed to stand in the way of substantial justice. We can in this connexion also refer to Section 99, Civil P.C., as having been framed with the same object in view. It is a matter of history now that there was a time when suits were dismissed and plaints were rejected because the plaints were not properly verified. Section 153 says not only that the Court may at any time amend any defect or error in any proceeding in a suit, but it further emphasizes the duty of the Court by saying that:

all necessary amendments shall be made for the purpose of determining the real question or issue raised by or depending on such proceeding.

7. Can we say in this case, that the learned Munsif has used his powers, conferred upon him by Section 153 by seeing that all necessary amendments have been carried out, so that the real controversy between the parties may be determined? There can be no doubt that Order 33, Rule 5 empowers a Court to reject an application for permission to. sue as a pauper if it is not properly framed as directed therein; but this. can only mean that no amendments, were possible and the defects could not be rectified for some reason or other. In our opinion it was the duty of the Court when it found that a defect in verification was there, to offer a chance to the applicant to correct the verification. If that chance was not availed of, it was certainly open to the Court to reject the application. We do not agree that the remedy by instituting a second application for permission to sue as a pauper was the right and proper remedy in such a case. The rule of limitation may stand in the way of the second application. Then what about the unnecessary costs to be incurred by the parties in going over the same procedure which had been already gone through. Section 151, Civil P.C., says:

Nothing in this Code shall be deemed to limit or otherwise affect the inherent power of the Court to make such orders as may be necessary for the ends of justice or to prevent abuse of the process of the Court.

8. Will it not be an abuse of the process of the Court, if the applicant is called upon to make a fresh application for permission to sue as a pauper simply because his first application was badly verified. We want to lay emphasis on the feature that our decision has not been arrived at simply because we consider that these are hard cases but because we consider that the object for which the Courts exist, namely, doing justice, has not been kept in view by the orders in question. In the result, we allow the applications, set aside the orders complained of and remand the cases to the Court below and direct it to give the applicant a sufficient opportunity to enable him to correct the verification of his petitions. After the petitions have been verified the Court will proceed to decide the petitions on their merits. This would mean a hearing of further arguments based on the amendment. The costs. will be costs in the cause and will depend on the result of the suit, if the petitions mature in a suit, or will abide the result of the applications.


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