1. It is admitted that Criminal Revision Case No. 787 of 1921 presented by the same parties and for the same relief was dismissed by this Court for default of payment of printing charges. The preliminary point for decision therefore in this case is whether the High Court can or will entertain a petition on a matter already disposed of, when the order disposing of it is still in force and has not been set aside. Petitioner relies only on the general powers of superintendence given to this Court over subordinate courts under Section 107 of the Government of India Act.
2. The ruling of a Bench of this Court in Ranya Rao In re is in point, that being a case in which it was sought to restore to file a Revision petition dismissed for default. The Bench held that it had no such power. This ruling is also clear authority for the proposition that in a Criminal Revision Case 'no distinction can be made between an order passed without hearing the petitioner and one in which he is heard.' Hence the order of dismissal of Criminal Revision Case No. 787 of 1921 is a final disposal. A Bench of this Court has recently in its judgment in Criminal Appeal No. 695 of 1922 laid down that when a Criminal Appeal has once been disposed of finally, the Court has no power to entertain at fresh appeal on the same matter while the original disposal stands. It is true that one of the learned Judges in that case, Devadoss, J. doubts the correctness of the ruling in lianga Rao In re (1912) 23 MLJ 371 on the ground that the High Court is not entitled to dismiss a Criminal Revision Petition for 'default of appearance.' But that does not cover the present case, or affect the finality on this date of the order dismissing Criminal Revision Case No. 787 of 1921.
3. It is a universal principle of law in the absence of direct statutory provision, that when a matter has been finally disposed of by a Court, the Court is functus ojficio and cannot entertain a fresh prayer for the same relief, unless and until the previous order of final disposal has been set aside. Thus the present petition cannot lie as a petition to rehear the matter finally disposed of in Criminal Revision Case No. 787 of 1921, while the ruling in Ranga Rao in re : (1912)23MLJ371 precludes me from treating it as a petition to set aside or review the order of dismissal-of the Criminal Revision Case for default; nor is the petition framed for that relief.
4. I must therefore refuse to entertain this petition and dismiss it.