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BaladIn Vs. Lakhan Singh - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtAllahabad
Decided On
Reported inAIR1927All214
AppellantBaladin
RespondentLakhan Singh
Cases ReferredMoir v. Williams
Excerpt:
- - i have gone through the evidence led by the judgment-debtor to substantiate his objections, and i have no hesitation in holding that the munsif was perfectly right in disbelieving that evidence......an objection to the attachment was taken on behalf of the judgment-debtor-appellant that the so-called house sought to be attached was in his occupation as an agriculturist and as such was not liable to attachment and sale in execution of the decree held by the respondent. this objection has been overruled by both the courts below; hence this second appeal by the judgment-debtor.2. the first court held that the house is in a very dilapidated condition and has no doors, and the roof has fallen down and that the house is not used for residence. this finding and decision has been affirmed by the lower appellate court.3. in appeal before me it is argued that the mere fact that the judgment-debtor did not reside in the house was no reason for overruling the objection taken by him inasmuch.....
Judgment:

Iqbal Ahmad, J.

1. In execution of a simple money decree a certain house in ruins was sought to be attached and sold by the decree-holder who is the respondent before me. An objection to the attachment was taken on behalf of the judgment-debtor-appellant that the so-called house sought to be attached was in his occupation as an agriculturist and as such was not liable to attachment and sale in execution of the decree held by the respondent. This objection has been overruled by both the Courts below; hence this second appeal by the judgment-debtor.

2. The first Court held that the house is in a very dilapidated condition and has no doors, and the roof has fallen down and that the house is not used for residence. This finding and decision has been affirmed by the lower appellate Court.

3. In appeal before me it is argued that the mere fact that the judgment-debtor did not reside in the house was no reason for overruling the objection taken by him inasmuch as if it was used by him for storing his agricultural produce, tying cattle and keeping his implements of husbandry etc., even then the house was not liable to attachment and sale in execution of the decree. I agree that it is not necessary for the application of Section 60(1)(c) of the Civil P.C., that the house must be actually used for residence by an agriculturist; all that is necessary for the application of that sub-clause is that the house or other building must belong to an agriculturist and be in his occupation and as such. As held in the case of Bhanja Lal v. D.B. Ballabha Dass [1919] 15 N.L.R. 83, it is not necessary that the house or other building should be an actual dwelling house. It is enough If it is used by him for some purposes connected with agriculture. In short the word 'occupation' in Clause (c) does not necessarily mean 'residence' only. But it seems to me that the decisions of the Courts below can be supported on yet another ground. On the findings arrived at by the first Court and not disturbed by the lower appellate Court, it must be taken that the so-called house is now in ruins and there are no doors in it and there is no roof. Such a structure cannot without straining the language be styled a house. Therefore, unless it can be called a building, Section 60(1)(c) will have no application. In the case of Moir v. Williams [1892] 1 Q.B. 264, it was observed that the expression 'building' in its ordinary sense 'is an enclosure of brick or stone work covered in by a roof.' True it is that in that case the word 'building' as used in certain Acts of Parliament had to be construed but in so doing the ordinary meaning of the word 'building' has to be considered. I have referred to Stroud's Judicial Dictionary and I find that in no case has the word 'building' been used with reference to a house in ruins that is a khandhal, as is the structure in the present case. For these reasons I hold that the judgment-debtor was not entitled to the protection afforded by Section 60(1)(c), Civil P.C.

4. Apart from all that I have said, it appears to me that the judgment-debtor has no case on the merits. I am informed by the learned Counsel for the appellant that there is evidence on the record to show that the house was in occupation of the judgment-debtor and as such was not liable to sale in execution of the decree held by the respondent. I in the exercise of the powers vested in me by Section 103, Civil P.C., can go into the evidence on the record in order to satisfy myself as to whether or not the so-called house or building was in the occupation of the judgment-debtor. I have gone through the evidence led by the judgment-debtor to substantiate his objections, and I have no hesitation in holding that the Munsif was perfectly right in disbelieving that evidence. The statements of the witnesses produced by the judgment-debtor who deposed that the judgment-debtor was actually living in the house were entirely unworthy of belief and were contradicted by the statement of the guardian ad litem of the judgment-debtor. The allegation that the house was used for storing grain obviously could not be believed in view of the report of the Commissioner that there was no roof over the house.

5. For the reasons given above I am of opinion that the Courts below were right in rejecting the objections filed by the judgment-debtor. The appeal is dismissed with costs.


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