1. This appeal,must be allowed not on the merits but on the ground that the learned Judge had no jurisdiction to grant a declaration such as that which he granted to the respondent on an application purporting to be under Section 151 C.P.C. practically varying the consent decree in a suit, C. S. No. 108 of 1938. That decree has become final and it is not the case of the respondent that he-cause of the passing of the Hindu Succession Act, 1956 that decree has become void. All that she says is that by reason of the provisions of that Act she has become entitled absolutely to the property in which she had under the consent decree only an estate for life. The question no doubt depends upon the construction of Section 14(2) of the Act.
But so far as we are aware, there is no provision in the Code of Civil Procedure or anywhere else which warrants an application as that on which the judgment under appeal was passed. The application was for the grant of a declaration that the respondent's right and interest in certain property had become enlarged into full and absolute rights as against the limited rights granted to the respondent under the decree. Certainly the language of Section 151 of the Civil Procedure Code, wide as it is, cannot grant power to any court to grant such a substantive declaration. While it is true that the inherent power of courts can always be invoked to furthsr the ends of justice, with due deference to the learned Judge there are certainly limits to such power. To further the ends of justice we cannot grant a decree on a promissory note which has become barred by limitation because the money was as a matter of fact due.
2. Learned counsel for the respondent appealed to us that the widow had no remedy and she would suffer a hardship if this court would not grant a declaration as prayed for by her. We fail to see any legal injury which she has suffered. Whether she has become entitled to an absolute estate will become relevant only after her death or as a result of any alienation made by her purporting to convey an absolute estate. If an alienation is made the controversy will be between the alienee and the reversioner. That controversy can be decided only in a regular suit. There is no other short cut which is recognised by any law or procedure. The appeal is therefore allowed but in the circumstances there will be no order as to costs.
3. Of course we have not dealt with merits of the case.