1. This petition raises a question under Act IV of 1938. The petitioner was the judgment-debtor under a decree which was executed on 20th September, 1937, by the sale of five acres of his property. For some reason apparently connected with proceedings under the Debt Conciliation Act, the sale was not confirmed until February, 1939. Meanwhile, Madras Act IV of 1938 having come into force, the debtor applied on 20th June, 1938, to scale down the decree. He does not, however, appear to have filed any application under Section 20 to stay proceedings in execution of the decree. The result was that, before the application under Madras Act IV of 1938 was heard, in the ordinary course a confirmation order was passed with reference to the sale held in September, 1937. In March, 1939, the learned District Munsif dismissed this application as incompetent, the sale having been held before the date 1st October, 1937, stipulated in Section 23oftheAct and the decree having been satisfied.
2. It seems to me that the decision of the learned District Munsif is correct. Section 23 empowers the Court to reopen sales held under a decree on or after 1st October, 1937, notwithstanding the fact that the sales have been confirmed. There is no provision in the Act empowering the Court to reopen a sale held before the 1st October, 1937. Assuming but not deciding that the petition at the date on which it was filed was competent, on the theory that the proceeds of the sale had not yet been applied to the satisfaction of the decree, by the time when the order of the District Munsif was passed, there was no decree outstanding and nothing left which could be scaled down and certainly the District Munsif had no power merely because this application was filed before the confirmation of the sale to treat the sale as null and void by reason of that application. This view is in accordance with that expressed by the Bench which decided O.S.A. No. 21 of 1939.
3. In the result the petition is dismissed with costs.