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Bhagwandas Vs. Nasir Mohd. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectMotor Vehicles
CourtRajasthan High Court
Decided On
Case NumberFirst Appeal No. 24 of 1970
Judge
Reported inAIR1973Raj237; 1973()WLN41
ActsMotor Vehicles Act, 1939 - Sections 31
AppellantBhagwandas
RespondentNasir Mohd.
Appellant Advocate P.C. Bhandari, Adv.
Respondent Advocate P.N. Datt and; K.N. Tikku, Advs.
DispositionAppeal dismissed
Excerpt:
.....to deposit the amount, the same would have been recovered by attachment of his property. it is argued that the plaintiff was instrumental in bringing about the sale of the truck to abdul mazid but there is no reliable evidence to prove this fact......suit amount. he further pleaded that at the initiative of the plaintiff he sold the truck to one abdul mazid and therefore the responsibility, lay upon abdul mazid to pay the suit amount. the trial court after framing issues and recording evidence held that the sum of rs. 2520/- was deposited by the plaintiff as mentioned by him. it further held that in view of the terms of the agreement ex. 1 the defendant was liable to pav the amount of goods-tax and penaltv for the period subseauent to 15-10-1964. as regards the plea of the defendant that he had sold the truck to abdul mazid on 2-9-1966, the trial court held that the plaintiff had no hand in the sale of the truck to abdul mazid and in any case the defendant was not absolved from the liability of payment of the tax for the period.....
Judgment:

S.N. Modi, J.

1. This is a defendant's appeal and arises out of a suit for the recovery of Rs. 2520/-.

2. The plaintiff-respondent Nasir Mohd. Khan was the owner of a truck bearing registration No. RJL 4660. He sold this truck to the defendant-appellant on 15-10-1964 for Rs. 8000/- and handed over its possession to the defendant. An agreement in that connection was executed between the parties which is Ex. 1 on the record. Under the terms of the agreement all the taxes pertaining to the truck for the period prior to 15-10-1964 were to be Paid by the plaintiff and the taxes pertaining to the period subseauent to 15-10-1964 were to be paid by the defendant. The Sales Tax Officer. Tonk, realised Rs. 2220/- on 11-3-1968 and Rs. 300/-on 13-3-1968 from the plaintiff on account of goods tax and penaltv in resoect of the said truck. The details of the goods-tax and penalty arp as follows :--

1.Rs.60/-as penalty for the period from October 1964 to March 19652.Rs.300/-as penalty for the period from 1-4-1965 to 31-3-663.Rs.1080/-as goods-tax for the period from 1-4-66 to 31-3-67.4.Rs.1080/-as goods-tax for the period from 1-4-1967 to 31-3-68.

Rs.2520/-Total

It was alleged by the plaintiff that as per agreement the responsibility for the payment of the aforesaid sum of Rs. 2520/-was on the defendant and since the plaintiff had to pay the amount, he was entitled to recover the same from the defendant. The plaintiff also sent a notice to the defendant for payment of Rs. 2520/-but the defendant renounced his liability. The plaintiff therefore filed the present suit for the recovery of Rs. 2520/- from the defendant.

3. The defendant in his written statement admitted having purchased the truck from the plaintiff for Rs. 8000/-and also that the truck was handed over to him on 15-10-64 as alleged by the plaintiff. He also admitted having executed the agreement Ex. 1. He however pleaded that since it was the responsibilty of the plaintiff to make an application to the registering authority for entering his name as transferee of the truck in the registration certificate, he was not liable to the suit amount. He further pleaded that at the initiative of the plaintiff he sold the truck to one Abdul Mazid and therefore the responsibility, lay upon Abdul Mazid to pay the suit amount. The trial Court after framing issues and recording evidence held that the sum of Rs. 2520/- was deposited by the plaintiff as mentioned by him. It further held that in view of the terms of the agreement Ex. 1 the defendant was liable to Pav the amount of goods-tax and penaltv for the period subseauent to 15-10-1964. As regards the plea of the defendant that he had sold the truck to Abdul Mazid on 2-9-1966, the trial Court held that the plaintiff had no hand in the sale of the truck to Abdul Mazid and in any case the defendant was not absolved from the liability of payment of the tax for the period subsequent to 15-10-1964. The trial Court accordingly decreed the suit.

4. I have heard learned counsel for the parties and gone through the record of the case. There is no substance in this appeal and it is liable to be dismissed.

5. It is admitted by the defendant in his written statement as well as in his deposition as DW 1 that he had undertaken the liability to cay all the taxes pertaining to the truck for the period subsequent to 15-10-1964. It is further clear from the statement of PW 2 Suiaur Rehman Khan who is an employee in the Commercial Taxes Department Tonk, that until the registering authority entered the name of the defendant as transferee of the truck in the registration certificate, the liability for payment of all the taxes in respect of the truck lav on the plaintiff. He has further deposed that in case the plaintiff failed to deposit the amount, the same would have been recovered by attachment of his property. In these circumstances, there was no wav out for the plaintiff but to deposit the amount and if he did so, he is liable to be reimbursed by the defendant under the terms of the agreement Ex. 1. The defendant was therefore rightly held liable to reimburse the plaintiff and repay the amount of Rs. 2520/- which the plaintiff had to deposit for the truck.

6. The learned counsel for the defendant-appellant contends that sincp the truck was sold to Abdul Mazid on 2-9-66 the defendant was not liable to pay goods-tax for the period subsequent to 2-9-1966-I need not enter into the question whether the truck was sold by the defendant to Abdul Mazid. as I am told that it is the subject-matter of a separate suit filed by the defendant against Abdul Mazid. Assuming that the truck was sold to Abdul Mazid the defendant would still be liable to reimburse the plaintiff as per agreement It is not the case of the defendant that the agreement Ex. 1 was in any wav modified after the sale of the truck to Abdul Mazid. It is argued that the plaintiff was instrumental in bringing about the sale of the truck to Abdul Mazid but there is no reliable evidence to prove this fact. At any rate, there is no suggestion that the agreement Ex. 1 was frustrated or made ineffectual on the sale of the truck to Abdul Mazid. Unless the agreement was frustrated, the plaintiff is liable to be reimbursed for all the taxes Paid by him for the period subseauent to 15-10-1964.

7. The next contention urged by the learned counsel for the defendant Is that the agreement Ex. 1 is illegal and cannot be enforced. The learned counsel was not able to point out how the agreement Ex. 1 was illegal. All that he was able to urge is that there was no valid transfer of the truck in favour of the defendant as his name was not got entered as transferee in the registration certificate of the truck. The submission of the learned counsel is that there is a breach of the terms of Section 31 of the Motor Vehicles Act. This contention rests upon the erroneous reading of Section 31 which runs as under :--

'Section 31. (1) Where the ownership of any motor vehicle registered under this Chapter is transferred,--

(a) the transferor shall, within 14 days of the transfer, report the transfer to the registering authority within whose jurisdiction the transfer is effected and shall simultaneously send a copy of the said report to the transferee!

(b) the transferee shall within thirty days of the transfer, report the transfer to the registering authority within whose iurisdiction hp resides, and shall forward the certificate of registration to that registering authority together with the prescribed fee and a copy of the report received by him from the transferor in order that particulars of the transfer of ownership may be entered in the certificate of registration.

(2) A registering authority other than the original registering authority making any such entry shall communicate the transfer of ownership to the original registering authority.'

All that the section requires is that the registering authority must be notified of the fact of transfer of ownership. If there is omission in that regard certain penalties are prescribed under Section 112 of the Motor Vehicles Act. The omission to notify the change of ownership, in my opinion, does not make the transfer itself illegal. It also does not interdict passing of property in vehicle to the transferee. A reading of Section 31 shows that the contractual transfer of ownership of a vehicle has to precede the application for transfer of ownership to the registering authority. That being the case, as between the transferor and transferee the sale gets completed before the transfer of registration certificate. Transfer of the registration certificate cannot be deemed to be a condition precedent to the completion of the sale. There is thus no substance in the argument that there was no valid transfer of the truck.

8. The appeal fails and it is hereby dismissed with costs.


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