1. We do not think there is force in the preliminary objection that no petition lies to the High Court under Rule 20 of the Ganjam and Vizagapatam Agency Rules on the ground that the Agent has acted under Rule 18. In this contention the learned pleader for the respondent is no doubt supported by Jagannadha v. Godanna I.L.R. (1892) M. 229, but, with all respect to the learned Judges who decided that case, we are unable to accept that decision as correct. They give no reasons. Rule 18 only says that the Agent may summarily dismiss an appeal without issuing notice to the respondent. But such an order of dismissal as it disposes of the suits of the parties, would be a decree and Rule 20 says that the High Court, in a proper case, may direct the Agent to review his judgment. We hold we have jurisdiction to entertain this petition.
2. The Agent does not give any reasons in support of the order of dismissal. But the Special Assistant Agent who originally heard the suit dismissed it on the ground that Section 244 of the C.P.C. of 1882 was a bar to the plaintiff's claim. The section itself is not in force in this Agency. But supposing that the principle of that section could be applied, which we do not decide, the 3rd defendant whose claim was upheld in execution proceedings was not a party to the suit, and therefore he could not invoke the principle of that section as a bar to the plaintiff's suit.
3. We set aside the order of the Agent and direct him to review his judgment in the light of the above observation.
4. Costs will abide the result.