1. In this case Hukum Chand was fined Rs. 10 under Section 426 of the Indian Penal Code for having removed some earth from two plots of land, one described as banjar and the other a grove, which were in the possession of the zemindar of the village, without his consent. We are not informed as to how much earth was taken. But evidently there was more than a mere handful or so because in the grounds of appeal in the Court below there is no ground taken to the effect that Section 95 of the Indian Penal Code would cover the case. The gravamen of the charge, of course, is that the applicant took this earth without getting the consent of the zemindar and the zemindar's karinda has brought this charge in support of the sacred rights of the zemindar. The defence was that the accused was only following the custom of the village and taking earth as every body else did when they wanted it. I do not think that the Criminal Courts were meant to decide questions which are really of a civil nature between the landlord and his tenants.
2. This is a very petty matte. But, however, to discourage, Criminal Courts from taking up such cases, I set aside the conviction and sentence and direct the fine to be re funded if paid.