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Rangaswamy Bhattar Vs. K. Seshadri Aiyengar and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectTrusts and Societies
CourtChennai
Decided On
Judge
Reported in35Ind.Cas.204
AppellantRangaswamy Bhattar
RespondentK. Seshadri Aiyengar and ors.
Cases Referred and Appaya v. Padappa
Excerpt:
temple trustees - enquiry into conduct of hereditary temple servants--absence of notice--irregularity in procedure--burden of proof--small cause suit--error as to harden of proof--high court--revision--provincial small cause courts act (ix of 1887), section 25. - - i am also satisfied that the district munsif's view as to the burden of proof was wrong......of this court above referred to and need not consider whether the distinction drawn by the learned judge between the present case and appaya v. padappa 23 b.p 122 is valid.3. the learned judge's decision must be set aside, the letters patent appeal being allowed with costs before us and in the civil revision petition.sadasiva aiyar, j.4. i agree. i do not think that the learned judge, from whose decision this letters patent appeal has been filed, should have interfered in revision on the mere ground that the district munsif in arriving at a finding of fact in a small cause suit misdirected himself as to the burden of proof. the order of the district munsif was not passed solely on his opinion on the question of the burden of proof. he had evidently considered the evidence on both.....
Judgment:

Oldfield, J.

1. The learned Judge held that plaintiff, a hereditary archaka, who sued in respect of the punishment inflicted on him by the trustees of his temple, was bound to prove against them that the preliminary enquiry they held was inadequate.

2. The question of burden of proof as to the legitimacy of the procedure atsuch an enquiry, as opposed to the correctness of the decision on the merits, has not, so far as we have been shown, been the subject of any decision. But in Seshadri Ayyangar v. Nataraja Ayyar 21 M.P 179 and in Thiruvambala Desikar v. Chinna Pandaram 34 Ind. Cas. 57 : 30 M.L.J. 274 : (1916) 2 M.W.N. 43 the language used implies that the burden of proof of the giving of notice of the enquiry is on the authority holding it. The latter case is important, because it negatives the general application of the presumption1 in favour of the bona fides of the acts of a legally constituted authority drawn in Hayman v. Governors of Rugby School (1874) 18 Eq. 28 : 43 L.J. Ch. 834 : 30 L.T. 217 : 22 W.R. 587 on which Bhavanishankar Ramrao v. Timmanna Ram Bhatta 30 B.K 508 : 8 Bom. L.R. 407 a decision dealing with dismissal from an appointment not shown to have been hereditary, was founded. Here the appointment in question being hereditary, we follow the rule implied in the two judgments of this Court above referred to and need not consider whether the distinction drawn by the learned Judge between the present case and Appaya v. Padappa 23 B.P 122 is valid.

3. The learned Judge's decision must be set aside, the Letters Patent appeal being allowed with costs before us and in the civil revision petition.

Sadasiva Aiyar, J.

4. I agree. I do not think that the learned Judge, from whose decision this Letters Patent appeal has been filed, should have interfered in revision on the mere ground that the District Munsif in arriving at a finding of fact in a Small Cause suit misdirected himself as to the burden of proof. The order of the District Munsif was not passed solely on his opinion on the question of the burden of proof. He had evidently considered the evidence on both sides and then came to the conclusion that it was not satisfactorily proved that the plaintiff had notice of the hearing on 2Mh May 1907 or 26th May 1907 into the charges framed by the trustees against the plaintiff who was a hereditary archaka. I am also satisfied that the District Munsif's view as to the burden of proof was wrong. The Small Cause suit is one of 1910 and it was decreed in September 1910 more than 5 1/2 years ago. Soma of the parties have dropped out and others have come in and a re-trial of the suit after such a lapse of time is not likely to advance justice. I would allow the appeal and restore the decision of the District Munsif with all costs to plaintiff.


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