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S.V. Thiruvengadaswami Iyengar Vs. Commissioner, Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectTrusts and Societies
CourtChennai High Court
Decided On
Reported in(1958)1MLJ285
AppellantS.V. Thiruvengadaswami Iyengar
RespondentCommissioner, Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments
Excerpt:
- - it has to be borne in mind that there is no provision in the act, where under the time required to obtain copies of the order complained of can be excluded......futility. i would repeat that what i called the second part of the order calls itself an annexure, which necessarily means that the two together form one integral whole.4. the learned government pleader strongly argued that, under the rules framed under the act, the petitioner is not entitled to a free copy of what has been called the annexure, and that, in consequence, there is no question of sending it. it may be that, under the rules, a party is not entitled to a free copy of annexure. but, from that, it does not follow that the annexure is not a part of the order. it merely means that the rules were drafted on an imperfect understanding of the statute. it seems to me that a person in the position of the petitioner is entitled to 90 days from the date of the receipt of the complete.....
Judgment:

Balakrishna Ayyar, J.

1. The petitioner applied to the Deputy Commissioner for Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments, Tanjore, for a declaration that he is the hereditary trustee of Sri Venkatachalapathiswami Temple in Serangulam Village. That application was dismissed. The petitioner then appealed to the Commissioner. On 25th September, 1956, the Commissioner passed an order, dismissing that appeal. That order is, so to speak, in two parts. What I may call the first part begins with the usual preamble that prefaces orders of the kind and ends with the following words : ' The appeal be and is hereby dismissed '. What I may call the second part of the order sets out the reasons for the direction given in the first part. I may mention here that what I called the second part purports to be and describes itself as an Annexure to what I called the first part. Normally, an Annexure would be an intergral part of the order in the same manner as an Appendix is part of a book and a Schedule is part of a document or statute. The first part of the order appears to have been sent by registered post and received by the counsel for the petitioner on 4th October, 1956. Under Clause (ii) of Sub-section (1) of Section 62 of the Act the applicant has a right ' within 90 days from the date of the receipt of such order by him' (to) institute a suit in the Court against such order. On 24th December, 1956, the petitioner filed a suit in the Court of the Subordinate Judge, Tanjore, to set aside the order that the Commissioner had passed.

2. The petitioner applied for and obtained a copy of the 'Annexure ' some time in January, 1957. On 21st January, 1957, he applied for leave to amend the plaint by adding certain paragraphs. By his amendment, he sought to show that four of the grounds on which the Commissioner rested his decision are erroneous. The Commissioner filed a counter, taking inter alia the point that the amendment, if allowed, would take away the plea of limitation open to him. Another point taken was that fresh grounds were sought to be included in the plaint. The learned Subordinate Judge dismissed Ms application for amendment. The petitioner has therefore come to this Court.

3. As I said before, Clause (ii) of Sub-section (1) of Section 62 gives a person aggrieved by certain orders passed by the Commissioner the right to file a suit within 90 days from the date of the receipt by him of the order he complains of. Ordinarily, when we speak of the order of a Court, Tribunal or other similar authority, we mean the whole of the order and not merely the last sentence of it. Thus, for example, an order of a Magistrate discharging an accused person would be the whole of the order ; an order of a Rent Court directing eviction would be the whole of the order including the reasons therefor; and an order of a Court appointing receiver would include the reasons therefor. There is no reason why the word ' order ' in Section 62 should be differently construed. On the other hand, there are considerations which show that it is the only proper why of construing that word. Anybody who is familiar with legal procedure knows that it is impossible to draft a plaint challenging an order made by the Commissioner if he is given merely what I called the first part of the order. Before a proper plaint can be prepared, what is called the Annexure to .the order must be available to the legal adviser of the party. It has to be borne in mind that there is no provision in the Act, where under the time required to obtain copies of the order complained of can be excluded. When therefore the statute says that the suit should be filed within 90 days from the date of the receipt of the order and at the same time does not provide for the exclusion of the time requisite to obtain the copy of the order, one must conclude that the order referred to in the section is the order, after obtaining which alone a party can properly take legal advice and set the law in motion. Otherwise, one is forced back to the absurd hypothesis that the Legislature was enacting a futility. I would repeat that what I called the second part of the order calls itself an Annexure, which necessarily means that the two together form one integral whole.

4. The learned Government Pleader strongly argued that, under the rules framed under the Act, the petitioner is not entitled to a free copy of what has been called the Annexure, and that, in consequence, there is no question of sending it. It may be that, under the rules, a party is not entitled to a free copy of Annexure. But, from that, it does not follow that the Annexure is not a part of the order. It merely means that the rules were drafted on an imperfect understanding of the statute. It seems to me that a person in the position of the petitioner is entitled to 90 days from the date of the receipt of the complete order to institute a suit.

5. On the merits of the case, I would observe that the amendment should have been allowed. No new ground was really sought to be taken by the amendment; the petitioner sought only to canvass the reasons given by the Commissioner in his order.

6. This Revision Petition is allowed with costs in both the Courts.


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