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Pattammal Vs. Ramayya Pillai - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtChennai
Decided On
Reported inAIR1932Mad415
AppellantPattammal
RespondentRamayya Pillai
Cases ReferredRobins v. National Trust Co.
Excerpt:
- - in appeal the district judge held that the burden of proof was the other way and, after weighing, all the evidence on each side, found that the defendant had failed to discharge the burden and decreed the suit......a consideration of the evidence, ho accepted the case of the defendant and dismissed the suit. in appeal the district judge held that the burden of proof was the other way and, after weighing, all the evidence on each side, found that the defendant had failed to discharge the burden and decreed the suit.2. in second appeal, it is argued that the district judge was wrong in his view as to the incidence of the burden of proof and that his finding on the facts is not binding on us in second appeal. the argument is founded on two sentences in a judgment of the privy council in peddi reddi jogi reddi v. chinnabi reddi a.i.r.1929p.c.13 at p. 89 (of 52 mad.):their lordships would further observe that all the courts below seem to have thrown the onus upon the appellant of proving that the.....
Judgment:

Waller, J.

1. In this case the plaintiff sued to recover the amount due on a usufructuary mortgage deed executed by the defendant and her deceased aunt in favour of his brother. The consideration for the mortgage was to be the discharge of a prior mortgage evidenced by Ex. 1. Both parties claimed to have discharged it and the short point for consideration was which of them was telling the truth. The District Munsif was of opinion that the burden of proof was under the circumstances of the case on the defendant, though he added that the question of onus was one of merely academic interest, as both of the parties had produced all the evidence at their command. On a consideration of the evidence, ho accepted the case of the defendant and dismissed the suit. In appeal the District Judge held that the burden of proof was the other way and, after weighing, all the evidence on each side, found that the defendant had failed to discharge the burden and decreed the suit.

2. In second appeal, it is argued that the District Judge was wrong in his view as to the incidence of the burden of proof and that his finding on the facts is not binding on us in second appeal. The argument is founded on two sentences in a judgment of the Privy Council in Peddi Reddi Jogi Reddi v. Chinnabi Reddi A.I.R.1929P.C.13 at p. 89 (of 52 Mad.):

Their Lordships would further observe that all the Courts below seem to have thrown the onus upon the appellant of proving that the properties he claimed were his own, instead of placing it as it should be upon the plaintiff. It therefore appears to their Lordships that there is no question of fact so found that can be binding upon an appellate Court on a second appeal,

3. The rule is, no doubt, laid down in the widest and most general terms, but we venture to doubt whether it should be applied in all similar cases without discrimination. In another of the rulings cited before us, The Official Assignee of the Estate of Cheah Soo Tuan v. Khoo Saw Choow A.I.R.1930P.C.265, their Lordships seem to limit its application to cases in which an erroneous view as to the law in regard to onus has coloured the mind of the Court and disabled it from weighing the evidence evenly:

The question of onus' it was observed in Robins v. National Trust Co. [1927] A.C. 515 'as a determining factor of the whole case can only arise if the tribunal finds the evidence pro and con so evenly balanced that it can come to no conclusion. Then the onus will determine the matter. But if the tribunal, after hearing and weighing the evidence, comes to a determinate conclusion, the onus has nothing to do with it and need not be further considered.

4. In the particular instance before us the District Judge weighed the evidence pro and con and came to a determinate conclusion that the case set up by the plaintiff was true and that the defence was not. He did not consider that the evidence was evenly balanced or find that the onus determined the matter. Nor is there the slightest ground for supposing that his conclusion was in any way influenced by his view of the incidence of the burden. It cannot be laid down as a proposition of universal application that an erroneous view of the burden of proof necessarily renders a Court incapable of weighing the evidence properly. In the Official Assignee of the Estate of Cheah Soo Tuan v, Khoo Saw Choow A.I.R. 1930 P.C.265 cited above, there must have been some special circumstances that led the appellate Court to take the view that the evidence had not been properly valued. No such circumstances exist here. The second appeal must be dismissed with costs.

5. Time for redemption three months from this date.


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