Harnam Singh, J.
1. In Execution Second Appeal No. 289 of 1953 it is said that the provisions of Section 60(1)(c), Civil P. C. being inconsistent with the provisions of Articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution of India are void.
Sections 60(1)(c) and 60(1)(ccc) of the Codeof Civil Procedure as applicable to the State ofPunjab read:
'60(1) ** * * *
Provided that the following particulars shall not be liable to such attachment or sale, namely--
(c) houses and other buildings (with the materials and the sites thereof and the land immediately appurtenant thereto and necessary for their enjoyment) belonging to an agriculturist and not proved by the decree-holder to have been let out on rent or lent to persons other than his father, mother, wife, son, daughter, daughter-in-law, brother, sister or other dependants or left vacant for a period, of a year or more.
(ccc) one main residential house and otherbuildings attached to it (with the material and the sites thereof and the landimmediately appurtenant thereto andnecessary for their enjoyment) belongingto a judgment-debtor other than an agriculturist and occupied by him:
Provided that the protection afforded by this clause shall not extend to any property specifically charged with the debt sought to be recovered.'
2. In these proceedings it is said that inasmuch as agriculturists and non-agriculturists are dealt with differently in the matter of the protection given to them the requirement of the equal protection of the laws is not satisfied.
3. In -- 'Ameerunnlsa v. Mahbooob Begum'. AIR 1953 SC 91 (A), Mukherjea J. delivering the judgment of the Court said:
'It is well settled that a legislature which has to deal with diverse problems arising out of an infinite variety of human relations must, of necessity, have the power of making special laws to attain particular objects; and for that purpose it must have large powers of selection or classification of persons and things upon which such laws are to operate. Mere differentiation or inequality of treatment does not 'per se' amount to discrimination within the inhibition of the equal protection clause. To attract the operation of the clause, it is necessary to show that the selection or differentiation is unreasonable or arbitrary, that it does not rest on any rational basis having regard to the object which the legislature has in view.'
4. In explaining the meaning of the word 'agriculturist' occurring in Section 60(1)(c) of the Code of Civil Procedure. Dalip Singh J. (Monroe and Ram Lall JJ. concurring) said in -- 'Nihal Singh v. Siri Ram'. AIR 1939 Lah 388 (PB) (B): '.....the word 'agriculturist' in this section, it appears to me means a person who personally engages himself in the tilling of the soil and whose livelihood depends upon the proceeds derived from that tilling of the soil.'
5. In Volume III (Second edition) of the book 'Willoughby on the Constitution of the United States' at page 1937 the law is stated to be thus:
'It will have been seen that the requirement of equal protection of the law applies to ail persons similarly situated or circumstanced. Hence, where there are rational grounds for so doing, persons or their properties may be grouped into classes to each of which specific legal rights of liabilities may be attached.'
6. Plainly, the object of Section 60(1)(c), Civil P. C. is to afford protection to the class of persons who engage themselves in the tilling of the soil and whose livelihood depends upon the proceeds derived from that tilling of the soil. If so, Section 60(1)(c) is not inconsistent with the provisions of Article 14 of the Constitution. The very idea of classification is that of inequality, so that it goes without saying that the mere fact of inequality, in no manner determines the matter of constitutionality.
7. Then it is said that the provisions of Section 60(1)(c) of the Code of Civil Procedure are inconsistent with the provisions of Article 15 of the Constitution.
8. As stated hereinbefore, the word 'agriculturist' occurring in Section 60(1)(c), Civil P. C. means a person who personally engages himself in the tilling of the soil and whose livelihood depends upon proceeds derived from that tilling of the soil. Indisputably, an agriculturist may belong to any religion, race, caste or sex. In Section 60(1)(c), Civil P. C. there is nothing to suggest that the privileges conferred upon agriculturists proceed upon the place of birth of the agriculturists.
9. For the foregoing reasons, I find that the provisions of Section 60(1)(c) of the Code of Civil Procedure are not inconsistent with the provisions of Articles 14 and 15 of the Constitution.
10. In the result, Execution Second AppealNo. 289 of 1953 fails and is dismissed with costs.