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Venkatavaraga Vs. the District Board of Tanjore in Charge of the Nadar Chattram - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectLimitation;Property
CourtChennai
Decided On
Judge
Reported in(1893)ILR16Mad305
AppellantVenkatavaraga
RespondentThe District Board of Tanjore in Charge of the Nadar Chattram
Excerpt:
.....1887). if the suit does not come under article 110 of the limitation act, it does not appear to fall under any other description of suits in the schedule, and therefore is governed by article 120 as a suit for which no period of limitation is provided elsewhere in the schedule and the period is six years. 4. the second appeals fail and are dismissed with costs......under article 110 of schedule ii of the limitation act, suits for arrears of rent, and that the period of limitation is therefore three years. we think this is not a suit for arrears of rent. the merais or customary dues sued for are not claimed by plaintiff as landlord, but as due to the chattram by custom. there is no definition of the term rent in the limitation act, and we must construe it strictly in the case of a disenabling statute. so construing it we think it does not include customary dues of the kind claimed in this suit. the relation of landlord and tenant does not exist between the plaintiff and defendants and we think there is a clear distinction between suits like the present and ordinary suits for arrears of rent, a distinction which is recognized by the provincial.....
Judgment:

1. The principal point argued in these appeals is limitation. For appellant it is contended that the amendment of the plaint ordered by the District Judge by which the District Board was substituted for the President of the Local Fund Board was in fact the substitution of a new plaintiff, and that, therefore, by Section 22 of the Limitation Act, the suit must be deemed to have been instituted at the date of the order, and at that date (12th March 1890) the suit was barred by limitation, being a suit for merais for faslis 1293, 1294 which ended 30th June 1885. The appellant's vakil argues that the suit comes under Article 110 of schedule II of the Limitation Act, suits for arrears of rent, and that the period of limitation is therefore three years. We think this is not a suit for arrears of rent. The merais or customary dues sued for are not claimed by plaintiff as landlord, but as due to the chattram by custom. There is no definition of the term rent in the Limitation Act, and we must construe it strictly in the case of a disenabling statute. So construing it we think it does not include customary dues of the kind claimed in this suit. The relation of landlord and tenant does not exist between the plaintiff and defendants and we think there is a clear distinction between suits like the present and ordinary suits for arrears of rent, a distinction which is recognized by the Provincial Small Cause Courts Act by placing the two kinds of suits under different heads in the schedule (Articles 8 and 13 of schedule II of Act IX of 1887). If the suit does not come under Article 110 of the Limitation Act, it does not appear to fall under any other description of suits in the schedule, and therefore is governed by Article 120 as a suit for which no period of limitation is provided elsewhere in the schedule and the period is six years. Even regarding the suit as instituted at the date of the District Judge's order of 12th March 1890 it is brought within six years from the date of the cause of action and is therefore not barred.

2. In this view it is unnecessary to consider the question whether Section 22 of the Limitation Act applies to the case, and we therefore express no opinion upon it.

3. Another point raised is that exchange of pattas and muchalkas was a condition precedent to the plaintiff's right to sue. This contention was not raised by the defendants themselves, and, we agree with the District Judge that this amounted to a tacit admission that pattas and muchalkas had been dispensed with by the parties. Lastly, it is argued that the merais claimed are unreasonable. Both Courts have found that they are fair and reasonable and have been claimed as of right for a long period.

4. The second appeals fail and are dismissed with costs. Civil Revision Petition No. 378 of 1891 is also dismissed with costs.


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