1. It is not possible for me to understand what the President means by the following words:
It is true that Lala Jugul Kishore has also filed a reference contending that the amount of compensation should be paid to him. We shall decide the respective claims of Jugul Kishore and Mt. Pratab Dei in that reference.
2. First of all a reference can be made, so far as I understand, by the Land Acquisition Officer to the Tribunal and not by a party. Neither I nor counsel for parties have been able to discover the paper which the President calls a reference by Jugul Kishore. Further if the President is seised of the matter in dispute between Jugul Kishore and Mt. Pratab Dei and a reference has been made to him, I. do not understand what stage of proceedings he considers that reference to be. What would be the use of the Tribunal deciding as to whom the money belongs when the money itself has disappeared? It is requested that the President will enlighten me on the following points:
(1) Has any reference been made to the Tribunal by the Land Acquisition Officer to decide the dispute between Jugul Kishore and Mt. Pratab Dei as regards the amount of compensation?
(2) If not, what is the 'reference' to which allusion is made in the portion of the President's Judgment quoted above?
(3) If the Land Acquisition Officer has not made a reference, under that rule can a party directly approach the Tribunal?
(4) If reference has been made by the Land Acquisition Officer, why does the President think that is a separate matter and not connected with the money taken away by Mt. Pratab Dei?
3. While making the return it is requested that the President will send the necessary papers to this Court. (After the receipt of the President's reply on the above points the Court delivered the following.)
4. Reference should be made to my order, dated 4th November, and to the reply of the President of the Improvement Trust Tribunal, dated 9th November. Mr. Dube, who appeared on behalf of Mt. Pratab Dei, argued on a totally different point. It appears now that when the President asked for the opinion of the Court on the point of law on 31st March last, there was a reference pending before him which was made by the Land Acquisition Officer, on 18th January 1927. A certain amount of compensation was deposited in the Court of the Land Acquisition Officer and paid out to Mt. Pratab Dei. Jugul Kishore applied to the President of the Tribunal that Mt. Pratab Dei should be called upon either to re-deposit the money or to give security pending the decision of the reference made to the Tribunal by the Land Acquisition Officer, on 18th January 1927. The reference relates to the rival claims between Jugul Kishor and Mt. Pratab Dei and desires the Tribunal to decide whether the amount of compensation should be paid to Jugul Kishore or to Mt. Pratab Dei. The President of that Tribunal desired the opinion of this Court whether he had jurisdiction or not to pass orders with regard to money. My answer is that he has jurisdiction because the question as to whom the money should be paid is pending before him and it is within his jurisdiction to take charge of the money or to put trust in Mt. Pratab Dei and permit her to retain custody of the money until he decides the rival claims of Jugul Kishore and Mt. Pratab Dei.
5. What Mr. Dube argued before me was something totally different and is a matter not arising on the report of the President, dated 13th March last. He objected that the reference made by the Land Acquisition Officer on 18th January 1927 was not a proper reference according to law and that the Tribunal had no jurisdiction to entertain it. This is a totally different question from the one submitted to this Court for opinion. If there is any validity in this contention it must be argued before the Tribunal or the President of the Tribunal and not before this Court. There is no distinct question formulated in the report of the President. I take the question to be whether under the circumstances of the present case when the reference made by the Land Acquisition Officer, dated 18th January 1927, is pending before the President, has the President authority to pass orders regarding the custody of the money, which, is the value of the land compulsorily acquired. My answer is in the affirmative.