1. It is claimed for 1st defendant that the suit is barred by limitation on the ground that the plaintiff's right to receive maintenance from the Zemindar was denied more than twelve years before the date of the plaint. It is on the 1st defendant to prove this denial and in our opinion he has failed. We agree with the Subordinate Judge that the four witnesses examined on the 1st defendant's side are untrustworthy and the story which they tell seems to us to be improbable. Eliminating that evidence there remains only the fact that no maintenance has been paid to plaintiff at any time since her husband's death and the plaintiff's allegation in Exhibit U that when the Zemindar was asked to provide for her he promised to arrange--a statement in paragraph 12 of the plaint is relied on as an admission of the alleged denial but it does not amount in our opinion to an admission of the denial of a right to receive maintenance. The evidence is insufficient to prove that the right was denied.
2. The alleged denial not being proved there is no room for the application of Article 129 of the First Schedule of the Limitation Act and accepting the view presented on behalf of the 1st defendant, that that article is the specific article applicable to a suit for future maintenance there is no bar because there has been no denial.
3. The first defendant contends that the plaintiff as widow of a junior member of his family is not entitled to maintenance out of the Zemindari. It having been decided in this Court that junior members of the family of a holder of an impartible estate are entitled to maintenance out of the impartible property, there is no reason why their widows should not also be entitled to maintenance. The decision of this Court in Tirumal Rao Sahib v. Rangadani Rao Sahib : (1912)23MLJ79 shows that the juniors are to be considered as members of a joint family of which the senior is also a member. Accepting that as the principle on which the decision is to be based we can hardly refuse to treat the case of the widow as though she were the widow of a member of a joint family and on that footing to admit her right to maintenance.
4. A further contention is that the plaintiff cannot claim maintenance from the Zemindar because her husband in compromising a suit in which he claimed the Zemindari, accepted by his guardian an allowance of Rs. 750 a month for himself and his two brothers, and agreed to give up any claim to succeed to the Zemindari.
5. We think it unnecessary to, say more on this point than that this allowance charged on certain villages of the Zemindari is clearly on the construction of Exhibit III, nothing more than a maintenance allowance for the three brothers and that the compromise did not operate to give the plaintiff's husband a separate ownership of any part of the Zemindari descendible to his heirs except by a division of the estate, and that was clearly not intended even if it could be effected. It is at least doubtful whether the plaintiff's husband could bind his heirs to receive a particular amount as maintenance out of the Zemindari in lieu of such rights as they might have independently of his right to receive maintenance for his life. The compromise does not therefore stand in the way of the plaintiffs claim.
6. There remains for consideration the question of the amount to which the plaintiff is entitled. The 1st defendant does not quarrel with the Subordinate Judge's decree so far as it relates to maintenance falling due after the suit, but the plaintiff in a cross appeal challenges it as making insufficient provision for her wants.
7. As regards arrears the 1st defendant attacks the decree on the ground that arrears ought not to be awarded at the same rate as future maintenance it not having been shown that plaintiff was, as she alleged, obliged to borrow money to maintain herself.
8. As regards the amount of maintenance though we are disinclined to interfere with the discretion of the Subordinate Judge, we think that the allowance he has made should in a way be adjusted by a decrease in the rate at which arrears are to be paid and an increase in the rate of future maintenance. In 1845 a lady in this family received only Rs. 40 a month but having regard to the increased cost of living to which the Subordinate Judge refers, to be more than proportional increase in the income of the Zemindar, to the fact that the plaintiff's husband was allowed Rs. 250 a month we do not think that an allowance of Rs. 80 a month exceeds what is required to maintain the plaintiff in circumstances suitable to her position and for the maintenance after the suit we shall modify the decree accordingly. But in regard to the arrears it has to be remembered that the plaintiff is a widow and not entitled to any share or interest in the property of her husband's family: the widow's maintenance is properly such allowance as may keep her in a suitable condition of comfort whereas the maintenance , of a male member of a joint family represents at least to some extent his interest in the property of the family. We think therefore that it is not improper to take into consideration the fact that the plaintiff has not shown that during the twelve years in which she received nothing from the Zemindar she had to borrow money or had any difficulty in obtaining all the comforts which she required. She allowed one year's allowance to be barred by limitation a fact which suggests that her need of money was at least extreme. We have to consider also the fact that she is now to receive in a lump sum the allowance which she has for so long delayed to demand and on the whole we think that a sum of Es. 6000 i. e., slightly more than Rs. 40 a month is as much as she ought now to be given. We modify the decree accordingly and confirm it in other respects. As regards costs in the Lower Court the plaintiff will receive proportionate costs on the amount we have allowed her and 1st defendant will bear his own costs. In this Court the 1st defendant will pay plaintiff's costs of appeal No. 223 of 1911 and in appeal 289 of 1911 the parties will bear their own costs.