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Rajbans Behari Lal and anr. Vs. Janki Devi W/O Gopal Behari Lal - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtPunjab and Haryana High Court
Decided On
Case NumberSecond Appeal No. 127-D of 1964
Judge
Reported inAIR1965P& H314
ActsCode of Civil Procedure (CPC), 1908 - Order 7, Rule 11
AppellantRajbans Behari Lal and anr.
RespondentJanki Devi W/O Gopal Behari Lal
Cases Referred and Chet Singh v. Mul Singh
Excerpt:
.....under article 226, a writ appeal will lie. but, no writ appeal will lie against a judgment/order/decree passed by a single judge in exercising powers of superintendence under article 227 of the constitution. - it is undisputed that in order to find out whether a suit has been properly valued for the purposes of court-fee or not one has to like to the allegations made in the plaint alone. 500/-.[8] learned counsel for the appellant paled his reliance on the definition of the word 'goods' in section 2(7) of the indian sale of goods act which included 'shares' as well......in each case shall be thirteen rupees. * * * * * * * * * * * *' [7] it is common ground that the share scrips are the name of the plaintiff-respondent. it is undisputed that in order to find out whether a suit has been properly valued for the purposes of court-fee or not one has to like to the allegations made in the plaint alone. in the present case it was definitely alleged in the plaint that the shares belonged to the respondent and the share scrips were also in her name. respondent and the share scrips. the latter are merely documents of title which show that the person concerned holds certain shares in a company. they are of no value to a third party who is in illegal possession of the same. it cannot be said that if somebody stealthily or wrongfully removes them from the custody.....
Judgment:

1. Smt Janki Devi respondent filed a suit for the recovery of share certificates in respect of 2233 shares of the Delhi Cloth and General Mills against Raj Bans Behari Lal and his wife, Daya Wati appellants. Her allegations were that there shares belonged to the and share certificates were also in her name but the defendant-appellants were wrongly keeping them.

[2] The suit was contested by the appellants inter alia on the ground that the plaint had not been properly valued for purposes of court-fee and jurisdiction and that the valuation should have been at the market value of the shares. It was also averred that the suit had not been filed in the proper form and the plaintiff should have claimed the value of the shares in the alternative.

As a result, the following the two preliminary issues were framed by the trial Judge/;--

1. Whether the plaint is properly valued for purposes of Court-fee and jurisdiction If not what is the correct value?

2. Is the suit not in the prescribed form? If not to what effect?

[3] The trial Court accepted the contentions of the appellants and held that the suit should be valued according to the market value of the share which came to Rs. 100,710/-. According to it the valuation for purposes of jurisdiction should be the same as for court-fee. The Court also found that since the property sued for had a market value, the plaintiff was given 15 days time to correct the valuation and amend the plaint so as to bring it in the prescribed form. Since the deficiency in court-fee had not been made up within the fixed time and no request for further adjournment was made on behalf of the plaintiff in this respect the pliant was rejected under O. 7, R. 11 Civil P. C.

[4] Aggrieved by this decision, the plaintiff filed an appeal before the learned Additional Senior Subordinate Judge who reversed the findings of the trial Court, set aside its judgment and decree and remanded the case, to it for disposal according to law. The learned Judge held that the case was governed by S. 7(iv)(a) of the Court-fees Act because the plaintiff was only demanding the recovery of the share certificates from the defendants who were in unlawful possession of the same. These Scripps had no market value in the hands of the appellants because they were in the name of the respondent and as such they could not be sold by them. Consequently the case was not governed by the provisions of section 7(iii) of the Court-fees Act. Against this order the present appeal has been filed by the defendants.

[5] The sole question for decision is whether the present suit is governed by the provisions of section 7(iii) or section 7(iv)(a) of the Court-fees act.

[6] It is conceded by both the sides that there is no direct authority of any Court on this point. the relevant portions of section 7 are as under.

'S. 7 The amount of fee payable under this Act in this suits next hereinafter mentioned shall be computed as follows:

* * * * * *

* * * * * *

(iii) In suits for movable property other than money where the subject-matter has a market value-according to such value at the date of presenting the plaint:

(iv) In suits-

(I) for moveable property where the subject matter has not market value as for instance in the case of documents relating to title,

* * * * * *

* * * * * *

according to the amount at which the relief sought is valued in the plaint or memorandum of appeal.

In all suits the plaintiff shall state the amount at which he values the relief sought:

Provided that the minimum court-fee in each case shall be thirteen rupees.

* * * * * *

* * * * * *'

[7] It is common ground that the share scrips are the name of the plaintiff-respondent. It is undisputed that in order to find out whether a suit has been properly valued for the purposes of court-fee or not one has to like to the allegations made in the plaint alone. In the present case it was definitely alleged in the plaint that the shares belonged to the respondent and the share scrips were also in her name. Respondent and the share scrips. The latter are merely documents of title which show that the person concerned holds certain shares in a Company. They are of no value to a third party who is in illegal possession of the same. It cannot be said that if somebody stealthily or wrongfully removes them from the custody of the real owner then he becomes the owner of the shares in the Company and for the recovery of the share scrips the plaintiff would have to pay court-fee on the market value of those shares. It is only when the share-holder himself signs the transfer deed with regard to those shares in favour of a third person, that the latter becomes their owner. Share scrips are undoubtedly moveable title and have no market value therefore a suit for their recovery would be governed by section 7(iv)(a) and not section 7(iii) of the Court-Fees Act. The Legislature has specifically provided that the' documents according to her own choice at Rs. 500/-.

[8] Learned counsel for the appellant paled his reliance on the definition of the word 'goods' in section 2(7) of the Indian Sale of goods act which included 'shares' as well. His argument was that and consequently the present suit would be governed by section 7(iii).

[9] As I have already mentioned above 'shares' are not the same things as 'share scrips' and besides the letters are of no value in the hands of a person who is in wrongful possession of the. same and have therefore no market value.

[10] Learned counsel then relied on Jamshedji Naoroji v. Maganlal Bankelal & Co., AIR 1925 Bom. 314 Kunhunni Elaya Nayar v. R. M. Krishna Pattar AIR 1943 Mad 74, Albert Judah v. Rampada Gupta AIR 1959, Cal 715 and Chet Singh v. Mul Singh, 10 Pun RE 1871. It may at once be stated that barring the last authority the first three do not deal with the court-fee matter at all. As regards the fourth certain bonds were involved therein some of which had admittedly been sold by the plaintiff in favour of the defendant. Therefore this authority is of no help to the appellant. Besides the two provisions with which we are concerned in the present case have not been referred to and discussed in this authority.

[11] The result is that this appeal fails and is dismied. In the circumstances of this case, however I will leave the parties to bear their own costs in the Court.

[12] Appeal dismissed.


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