1. This appeal arises out of a suit brought by the plaintiff to obtain a declaration that the defendants had no right as against him and to an injunction restraining them from interfering with him in his management of certain zamindari which he held as a lessee. The facts are briefly as follows. The plaintiff and his uncle Laukhi obtained a lease on the 4th of June 1900 of certain proprietary rights for a term expiring in 1315 Fault. On the 18th of October 1907 Laukhi granted a sub-lease of his half share in the theka to the defendants Nos. 1 and 2. The plaintiff alleges that they have interfered in his collection and that whenever he sues tenants they plead payment to the defendants Nos 1 and 2. He maintains that his uncle Laukhi had no power under the law to grant a sub-lease of his thekadari rights, that the sub-lease, therefore, is void and that the defendants have no title and should be re-strained from interfering with him.
2. The Court of first instance held in favour of the plaintiff and decreed the claim. The lower appellate Court, reversed that finding holding that a sub-lease by a thekadar was not void.
3. The plaintiff on appeal to this Court urges that a thekadar- of proprietary rights cannot under the Agra Tenancy Act grant a sublease of his rights as thekadar. With this contention we find ourselves unable to agree. Under Section 4 (clause 5) the words 'tenant' in the Tenancy Act includes thekadar.' Under Section 19 of the Act all tenants, other than permanent tenure-holders, fixed-rate tenants, exproprietary tenants, or occupancy tenants, are non-occupancy tenants. Therefore, within the meaning of the Act the thekadar is a non-occupancy tenant. This is also clear from the wording of Section 20 (clauses 2 and 3) which treats of the succession to and transfer of tenancies. Clause (1) relates to the interest of permanent tenure-holders and fixed-rate tenants, Clause (2) relates to the interest of an ex-proprietary tenant, an occupancy tenant, or a non-occupancy tenant, other than a thekadar. In Clause (3) it is laid down that the interest of a thekadar is subject to the terms of the lease, heritable but not transferable. Section 21 lays down that where the interest of a tenant, (in the word tenant including a thekadar) is not transferable, he shall not be competent to transfer his holding or any portion thereof, otherwise than by a sublease as hereinafter provided. It is, therefore, clear that a thekadar may sublet his holding if the act provides, for this. Sections 23 to 30 relate to sub-leases. Section 23 in clear language states that Section 24 to Section 30 shall not apply to leases by thekadars. The leases contemplated by this section apparently are those granted by thekadars to tenants cultivating land under them. Section 24 says that a tenant may sub-let the whole or any portion of his holding subject to the restrictions imposed by the Act. The word tenant here must be deemed to include thekadar. Section 25 Clause (3) relates to sub-leases granted by non-occupancy tenants. A thekadar is with in the meaning of the Act a non-occupancy tenant and, therefore, falls within the purview of this clause. It is clear that under that clause he can sub-lease his holding at least for a term of one year. The present suit was instituted on the 28th of January 1908, that is to say within one year of the grant of the sub-lease by Laukhi to the respondents. This was a sub-lease which will hold good for at least one year. The plaintiff is, therefore, not entitled to restrain them from exercising their rights as sub-lessee nor is he entitled to a declaration that they have no title whatsoever. In these circumstances the appeal must fail. It is dismissed with costs.