M.D. Bhat, J.
1. This is a plaintiff's revision against the trial Court's order dated 14-8-1980 passed under Order 16, C. P. C. with conditions stipulated in the matter of due service of summons on the plaintiff's witnesses.
2. 14-8-1980 was the date fixed for the evidence of the plaintiff and his witnesses. The plaintiff was absent and so also his witnesses. The processes issued for the summoning of the witnesses had not returned to the Court, served or otherwise. The trial Court observed that similar situation existed on earlier hearings as well, and one of the witnesses of the plaintiff had actually refused to accept the summons. In these circumstances, the trial Court passed the impugned order, whereby it was directed that the plaintiff was being given one more chance to summon his witnesses on the condition that he should take special interest in getting his witnesses served, and, in case, the processes arc found to be returned unserved or without proper service, the plaintiff would be responsible to produce his witnesses in Court at his own risk and responsibility. It is against this order that the plaintiff has now come up in revision.
3. Learned counsel for the applicant-plaintiff has urged before me that no duty, obligation or any responsibility could be cast on the plaintiff to keep his witnesses present on the date of evidence and that he could not be directed to take special interest in the matter of service of summons on them. According to the learned counsel, the plaintiff's duty and responsibility ended, once he paid the process-fee for service of summons on his witnesses in due lime and furnished proper and correct addresses. The learned counsel for the non-applicant-defendant has urged that the plaintiff was negligent in getting his witnesses produced for recording their evidence and that he was not giving the correct addresses of his witnesses to facilitate due service of summons on them.
4. The impugned order imposing responsibility on the plaintiff to keep his witnesses in attendance in Court on the date fixed for their evidence, at his own risk, in case the summonses were not served on them, is obviously wrong and not in conformity withRule 1 of Order 16, C. P. C. and the othep following Rules under the said Order. The trial Court is found to be wrong in imposing the condition that the plaintiff should take 'special interest' in getting his witnesses served, because no such condition is provided for in any of the provisions of the Code much less under Order 26 ibid. I feel, it is not a condition which is imposed on the plaintiff. Such a fact regarding taking special interest by the plaintiff is only, by way of observation to focus the attention of the plaintiff on the point that his witnesses are not turning up and, hence, he should take special interest to facilitate the due service on his own witnesses. Considering Rule 1 of Order 16, C. P. C. and also the subsequent Rules under the said Order, it is abundantly clear that the parties in the matter of summoning of witnesses have no other responsibility except to pay the process fee and diet money for their witnesses in time, of course, on furnishing proper and correct addresses of the witnesses. In case, the witnesses do not turn up despite service or otherwise, the subsequent Rules of Order 16 are already there to cope up with the situation. However, it is equally true that a moral duty is cast on both the parties to the suit, in the interest of its expeditious disposal, that they assist the Court in every possible manner to facilitate the service on the witnesses and, to procure their attendance in Court.
5. In the result, thus, the revision is partly allowed. Setting aside that part of the order impugned which relates to the imposition of condition, it is directed that the applicant-plaintiff is absolved from any such condition as laid down by the trial Court in the matter of procurement of attendance of the witnesses on the date of evidence. The rest of the trial Court's order stands maintained. It is, however, further directed that the applicant-plaintiff, in case he has not supplied correct and proper addresses, shall furnish proper and correct addresses of his witnesses, so that the trial Court may be in a position to effect the service on the witnesses in due time through its process-serving machinery. In the circumstances of the case, parties shall bear their own costs in the revision.