1. The question is whether the worshippers of a temple can bring a suit for the declaration that a permanent lease granted to the defendants, who are Archakas in possession of the property, is invalid under Order I, Rule 8 of the Code of Civil Procedure.
2. The objection urged by the appellants is that a suit for a declaration must conform to the terms of Section 42 of the Specific Relief Act, and since the worshippers as a body or their representatives under Order I, Rule 8, cannot be said to have any right as to property within the meaning of Section 42 of the Specific Relief Act, the suit is not maintainable. No authority has been cited for the appellants in support of this proposition ; on the other hand the ruling of the Privy Counsel in Robert Fischer v. Secretary of State for India 3 C.W.N. 161 : 26 I.A. 16 : 7 Sar. P.C.J. 459 : 8 Ind. Dec (N.S.) 192 suggests that Section 42 of the Specific Relief Act is not exhaustive of cases in which declaratory suits may be maintained, and it was held by a Full Bench of this Court in Kalyana Venkataramana Aiyangar v. Kasturi Ranga Aiyangar 38 Ind. Cas. 73 : 40 M.P 212 : 31 M.L.J. 777 : 20 M.L.T. 490 : 5 L.W. 625 : (1917) M.W.N. 400 that such a suit as this is maintainable, though the question whether it same within the provisions of Section 42,Specific Relief Act, was not raised then. There is also a ruling of this Court Chidambaranatha Thambiran v. Nallasiva Mudaliar 42 Ind. Cas. 366 : 41 M.P 124 : 32 M.L.J. 357 : 22 M.L.T. 218 : 6 L.W. 666 where a suit by the disciples of a mutt was held to be maintainable under Order I, Rule 8, for a declaration as to the invalidity of an alienation of the mutt property. We hold that the suit was maintainable.