Skip to content


Swaminatha Odayar Vs. S. Sundaram Iyer - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtChennai
Decided On
Reported in(1920)39MLJ711
AppellantSwaminatha Odayar
RespondentS. Sundaram Iyer
Cases ReferredMadras Estates Land Act. See Receiver of Ammayanaikanur v. Suppan Chetty I.L.R.
Excerpt:
.....or proceeding under this section shall be made only to or against such landholder 'who is the owner of the estate 'clearly intends to exclude persons like a receiver of the estate from the purview of the section. that may very well be, but here we have to consider the express words of a statute which clearly show that the legislature intended to confine these proceedings against persons who are owners of the estate as distinguished from persons who may be entitled to collect the rents of the estate and to do other acts contemplated by the act as landholder. the frame of this section like that of several other sections of the act is somewhat peculiar but there is no escape from its language which admits of no doubt as to the intentions of the legislature. the difficulty in construing..........be made only to or against such landholder (which means the landholder who is the owner of the estate.) landholder as defined in section 3, clause (5) includes not only the owner of an estate but also persons who are entitled to collect the rents of the whole or any portion of the estate by virtue of any transfer from the owner or his predecessor-in-title or of any order of a competent court or of any provision of law. this definition therefore would include a receiver appointed by the court as a landholder within the meaning of the act.2. therefore sub-section 5 to section 46 when it says that any application or proceeding under this section shall be made only to or against such landholder ' who is the owner of the estate ' clearly intends to exclude persons like a receiver of the.....
Judgment:

Abdur Rahim, J.

1. These cases arise out of applications made by certain tenants of the Palace Estate which is under the management of a receiver appointed by the Court for the compulsory acquisition of occupancy rights under Section 46 of the Estates Land Act. The Revenue authorities decided against the ryots on the ground that Section 46 precludes any application being made under it to a receiver appointed by the Court as distinguished from the beneficial owner of the property. We have not found it necessary to decide the preliminary objection raised that no objection lies against the order of the Revenue authorities as on the merits we are clearly of opinion that Sub-section 5 of Section 46 is a bar to the present application of the ryots in the case. While in the main clause of that section the word ' Landholder' alone is used, in Clause 5 at the end the legislature has added ' the sums payable under the section for the acquisition of the occupancy right shall be paid to the landholder who is the owner of the estate or part thereof and any application or proceeding under the section shall be made only to or against such landholder (which means the landholder who is the owner of the estate.) Landholder as defined in Section 3, Clause (5) includes not only the owner of an estate but also persons who are entitled to collect the rents of the whole or any portion of the estate by virtue of any transfer from the owner or his predecessor-in-title or of any order of a competent Court or of any provision of law. This definition therefore would include a receiver appointed by the Court as a landholder within the meaning of the Act.

2. Therefore Sub-section 5 to Section 46 when it says that any application or proceeding under this section shall be made only to or against such landholder ' who is the owner of the estate ' clearly intends to exclude persons like a receiver of the estate from the purview of the section. There is another section brought to our notice by Mr. Varadachariar, the learned Vakil for the respondent in which the same definition is found, namely, Section 200. It is argued by Mr. Rajah Aiyer that a receiver exercises all or most of the powers of. the landholder with reference to the management of the property and therefore in several connections he has been held to stand in the shoes of the owner. That may very well be, but here we have to consider the express words of a statute which clearly show that the legislature intended to confine these proceedings against persons who are owners of the estate as distinguished from persons who may be entitled to collect the rents of the estate and to do other acts contemplated by the act as landholder. It is not for us to speculate as to what the object of the legislature was in drawing the distinction and in restricting the rights given to the ryots by Section 46 to cases where the owner himself is in management of the property. The frame of this section like that of several other sections of the Act is somewhat peculiar but there is no escape from its language which admits of no doubt as to the intentions of the legislature.

3. The result is that C.R.P. Nos. 643 and 644 are dismissed with costs.

Odgers, J.

4. I agree. There is no doubt that a receiver falls within the definition of a landholder in Section 3 Sub-section 5 of the Madras Estates Land Act. See Receiver of Ammayanaikanur v. Suppan Chetty I.L.R. (1907) 30. It is equally clear that the meaning of 'landholder' as defined in Section 3 Sub-section 5 has been restricted by the words in Section 46 Sub-section 5 for the purposes set forth in that section. Section 46 Sub-section 5 is very clear and lays down that ' any application or proceeding under this section shall be made only to or against such landholder ' such landholder being defined just previously as the person 'who is the owner of the estate or part thereof. The difficulty in construing the section arises in my opinion from the fact that the definition of 'landholder' for the purposes of the section has been relegated to the last Sub-section instead of being clearly stated in the first. In view of the clear and unequivocal words of Section 46 Sub-section 5 no good purpose is served by referring to decisions under other Acts in which the word ' owner ' has been held not necessarily to mean a beneficial owner, as for instance, Section 7 of the Easements Act. The construction I put upon Sub-section 5 of Section 46 of the Madras Estate Land Act is further strengthened by the distinction drawn between a landholder who is not an owner in Section 200 of the same Act. I therefore think that the decisions of the revenue authorities are right and that the Civil Revision Petition 643 & 644 must be dismissed with costs.


Save Judgments// Add Notes // Store Search Result sets // Organizer Client Files //