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V. Ramaswami Aiyangar and anr. Vs. Doraisami Vandayar - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectFamily;Civil
CourtChennai
Decided On
Reported in(1942)2MLJ748
AppellantV. Ramaswami Aiyangar and anr.
RespondentDoraisami Vandayar
Cases ReferredHarihar Mukerji v. Harendra Nath Mukerji
Excerpt:
- - 4. the learned government pleader contends that although the receivers are officers of court they represent the parties as well and that their suits to recover the debts due to the estate of the deceased must be regarded as having been filed on behalf of the parties. i am not satisfied that these contentions urged on behalf of the respondents are well founded......it is conceded that these debts are all due under promissory notes executed in favour of the deceased person. in a litigation that arose after the death of the deceased, the petitioners were appointed receivers with express authority to sue in their own names as they have done in these suits and realise the outstandings. the court below has arrived at the conclusion that succession certificates are necessary in view of the provisions of section 214 of the indian succession act. because such certificates were not produced within the time allowed to the petitioners by the lower court the suits have all been dismissed.2. since the point involved in these cases affects government revenue, notice was ordered to the government pleader who has appeared along with the respondent's advocate.....
Judgment:

Kunhi Raman, J.

1. In these cases the only question of law that arises for consideration is whether it is incumbent upon the petitioners who are receivers appointed by the Court of the Subordinate Judge of Devakotta to the estate of the deceased R.M.Ar. Ar.Rm. Arunachalam Chettiar to obtain succession certificates before claiming decrees in the suits filed by them against certain debtors of the estate. It is conceded that these debts are all due under promissory notes executed in favour of the deceased person. In a litigation that arose after the death of the deceased, the petitioners were appointed receivers with express authority to sue in their own names as they have done in these suits and realise the outstandings. The Court below has arrived at the conclusion that succession certificates are necessary in view of the provisions of Section 214 of the Indian Succession Act. Because such certificates were not produced within the time allowed to the petitioners by the lower Court the suits have all been dismissed.

2. Since the point involved in these cases affects Government revenue, notice was ordered to the Government Pleader who has appeared along with the respondent's advocate in opposing these petitions.

3. Mr. Rajah Aiyar, the learned advocate for the petitioners in all these cases relies strongly upon the wording of Section 214 (1) (a) of the Indian Succession Act. This section states that without a succession certificate

No Court shall pass a decree against a debtor of a deceased person for payment of his debt to a person claiming on succession to be entitled to the effects of the deceased person or to any part thereof.

He contends that after the amendment of this section by the incorporation of the words 'on succession' there cannot be any doubt that it is only where a person claims to be entitled to the effects of a deceased person on succession that the provisions of the section can apply. In the present case, he argues that the receivers are officers of Court appointed with special authority to sue in their own names as also in the names of the parties. As already stated these suits were all filed in the names of the receivers and in the circumstances it cannot be said according to the petitioners' learned advocate that the receivers are persons claiming 'on succession' to be entitled to the effects of the deceased. Reliance is placed by him also on Harihar Mukerji v. Harendra Nath Mukerji I.L.R. (1910) Cal. 754, which has been followed in Anil Chandra v. Indian Economic Insurance Company I.L.R. (1941) Cal. 221. In the former case the question of the liability of a receiver to obtain a succession certificate before successfully suing the debtors to the estate represented by him was considered and the view taken is entirely in support of the petitioners' case. Mr. Rajah Aiyar also points out that that was a decision pronounced prior to the amendment to Section 214 by the addition of the words 'on succession' in Clause (1) (a). The amendment makes the position stronger still.

4. The learned Government Pleader contends that although the receivers are officers of Court they represent the parties as well and that their suits to recover the debts due to the estate of the deceased must be regarded as having been filed on behalf of the parties. He contends that if the suits were filed by the parties succession certificates would be necessary and that therefore the receivers also must be held to be liable to produce such certificates. I am not satisfied that these contentions urged on behalf of the respondents are well founded. On the basis of the decision in Harihar Mukerji v. Harendra Nath Mukerji (1910) I.L.R. Cal. 754. I hold that in view of the wording of Section 214 (1) (a) of the Indian Succession Act, it is not necessary that the receivers who have filed the suits in their own names in the exercise of a power expressly conferred upon them by the order of their appointment should produce succession certificates before they can get decrees passed in their favour on proving their respective claims.

5. The decisions of the Court below are accordingly set aside and the suits that have been dismissed on the ground of non-production of succession certificates are ordered to be restored to file.

6. In paragraph 21 of the judgment of the lower Court the learned District Munsiff states that if succession certificates are not necessary, then the suits may be decreed since the claims have been proved, the only question that remains outstanding being the necessity to produce succession certificates. It is therefore ordered that S.C. Nos. 264, 512, 516 and 632 of 1939 be decreed with costs. The respondents shall pay the petitioners their costs in these Civil Revision Petitions in this Court.


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