K.L. Bapna, J.
1. This is a second appeal by the plaintiff in a suit for recovery of damages.
2. The plaintiff Lokchand booked two items, one cycle and one trunk, from Ujjain to Kishangarh on 27-7-1947. When he reached Kishangarh on 29-7-1947, he got delivery of the cycle but not of the trunk. He entered into correspondence with the Traffic Manager, B. B. and C. I. Railway, and gave a notice under Section 77 of the Railways Act to the Traffic Manager, on 13-8-1947, and later on under S, 80 of the Code of Civil Procedure, on 16-3-1950, and as he did not receive any satisfaction, he instituted the present suit on 5-9-1950, for recovery of Rs 712-8-0 as value of the goods which were not delivered.
3. On behalf of the Railway Administration the pleas taken were that the notice under Section 77 of the Railways Act was not valid, that the notice under Section 80, C. P. C. was not served, and that the suit was barred by limitation.
4. The trial Court dismissed the suit on the ground that the alleged notice under Section 77 of the Railways Act, was not served on the proper officer.
5. On appeal, the learned Civil Judge held that no notice was necessary under Section 77 of the Railways Act, as the case was one of non-delivery and not of loss or deterioration of the goods. He held that the proof of notice having been served under Section 80, C. P. C. was not sufficient. He held that the suit was barred by limitation. The appeal was accordingly dismissed.
6. Learned counsel urged that the two grounds on which the suit was dismissed were not correct. On going through the record I find that there is no defect of non-service of notice under Section 80, C. P. C. Mention was made df this fact in para 3 of the plaint, and the postal acknowledgment Ex. P. 3 was pro-duced. Notice was sent by an Advocate, Mr. Bakli-wal, and is acknowledged by some person on behalf of the General Manager, whose rubber seal is affixed on the postal acknowledgment.
The copy of the notice was sought to be produced on 14-5-1951, but it was objected on behalf of the defendant that the document had not been produced earlier, and being a copy was not admissible. These objections were upheld by the trial Court, but quite erroneously. Section 65 read with Section 66 of the Evidence Act permits the production of the copy of the notice without summoning the original. It was for the defendant to show by production of the original that the document did not amount to a notice according to Section 80, C. P. C., but the defendant having failed to produce the original could not have any grievance when its copy was produced by the plaintiff.
7. On the second question learned counsel for the plaintiff urged that the Article applicable was 31 of the Limitation Act, and limitation would run from the date when he was told that he would not get delivery of the article. He relied on G. G. in Council v. Khadi Mandli, AIR 1950 Mad 438 and Rajgarh Jute Mills Ltd. v. Commissioners, Calcutta Port, AIR 1947 Cal 98.
8. In my opinion the view of law taken in the above cases is not correct. Article 31 of the Limitation Act runs as follows :
Timefrom which period begins to run.
31.Against a carrier for compensation for non-delivery of, or delayin delivering goods.
Whenthe goods ought to be delivered.
In the present case, since one item of the luggage was received on 29-7-1947, that was the date when the other item also ought to have been delivered. The time began to run from 29-7-1947. The suit was instituted on 5-9-1950 and was obviously barred by limitation. The view which I have taken finds support in Darjeeling Himalayan Rly. Co. Ltd. v. Jetmull Bhojraj, (S) AIR 195G Cal 390, Rajmal Pahar Chand v. Dominion of India, (S) AIR 1955 Punj 83, and Gajanand Rajgoria v. Union of India, (S) AIR 1955 Pat 182. It was rightly observed in the Punjab case, (S) AIR 1955 Punj 83, that the fact that the Railway Administration tried to search the goods or make enquiries would not extend limitation.
9. The suit was rightly dismissed and this appeal fails and is dismissed. I shall not allow costs astwo of the pleas taken in defence have been foundto be unsustainable.