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Kuppu Govinda Chettiar Vs. Uttukottai Co-operative Society by Its Liquidator - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtChennai
Decided On
Reported inAIR1937Mad604; (1937)1MLJ640
AppellantKuppu Govinda Chettiar
RespondentUttukottai Co-operative Society by Its Liquidator
Cases ReferredSassoon & Co. v. Ramdutt Ramkissen Dass
Excerpt:
- .....of rs. 100 under article 17-a(iii) of schedule ii to the madras court-fees amending act. the learned district judge held that the plaintiff should have valued the claim under section 7(iv-a) of the said amending act. this order of the learned judge is canvassed as being unsound by mr. v. ramaswami aiyar for the plaintiff. the question is, is the order of the liquidator a decree for money within the meaning of the said section 7(iv-a)? the term 'decree' therein connotes a final order of a court, whether civil or revenue, in a suit, and an order passed by an officer or a body which is not a court but is invested with0 judicial powers in pursuance of which a liability is fixed on a person to pay a sum of money will not come within its purview. the co-operative society act itself draws.....
Judgment:

Venkataramana Rao, J.

1. The question raised in this Revision Petition relates to the amount of the court-fee leviable on a plaint which prays for a declaration that an order of a liquidator of a co-operative society determining the amount of contribution payable by the plaintiff under Section 42(b) of the Co-operative Societies Act is null and void. The case of the plaintiff is that he ceased to be a member in or about June, 1930, that more than two years after he ceased to be a member an order for contribution was made against him on the 25th November, 1933, directing him to pay a large sum, namely, Rs. 8,000 and that the liquidator had no jurisdiction to pass such an order and he therefore prayed for a decree that such an order is illegal, void and of no effect and unenforceable against the plaintiff'. He paid a court-fee of Rs. 100 under Article 17-A(iii) of Schedule II to the Madras Court-Fees Amending Act. The learned District Judge held that the plaintiff should have valued the claim under Section 7(iv-A) of the said Amending Act. This order of the learned Judge is canvassed as being unsound by Mr. V. Ramaswami Aiyar for the plaintiff. The question is, is the order of the liquidator a decree for money within the meaning of the said Section 7(iv-A)? The term 'decree' therein connotes a final order of a Court, whether civil or revenue, in a suit, and an order passed by an officer or a body which is not a Court but is invested with0 judicial powers in pursuance of which a liability is fixed on a person to pay a sum of money will not come within its purview. The Co-operative Society Act itself draws a distinction between an order and a decree. Section 42(5) of the Act says that orders made under, the said section, when made by a liquidator, shall be enforced by any Civil Court in the same manner as a decree of such Court. In construing an analogous provision, Section 15 of the Indian Arbitration Act, which provides that an award shall be enforceable as if it were a decree of Court, Viscount Cave observed thus:

Section 15 does not enact that an award when filed is to be deemed a decree of the Court but only that it is to be enforceable as if it were a decree.

2. Sassoon & Co. v. Ramdutt Ramkissen Dass (1922) 44 M.L.J. 758 : L.R. 49 IndAp 49 : I.L.R. 50 Cal. 1 at 9 (P.C.) and refused to apply the bar of Section 47, Civil Procedure Code, to a suit to-have an award declared null and void.

3. Thus applying, the said principle, from the Co-operative Societies Act itself it is abundantly clear that the order of the liquidator under Section 42(b) cannot be a decree for money within the meaning of Section 7(iv-A), not having been passed by any Court in a suit. A subject cannot be taxed unless he comes within the letter of the law and in case of reasonable doubt, a construction most beneficial to the subject is to be adopted. I am therefore of the opinion that Section 7(iv-A) would not apply to the case and that the court-fee paid is proper. I accordingly set aside the order of the learned District Judge and allow the Revision Petition.

4. C.R.P. No. 693 of 1936 : Following my judgment in C.R.P. No. 692 of 1936, I set aside the order of the learned District Judge and allow the Revision Petition.


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