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Sri Sri Rajah Krishna Chandra Gajapathi Narayana Deo Garu, Rajah of Parlakimedi Vs. Kuppili Ramajogi Dora - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectEnvironment
CourtChennai
Decided On
Reported inAIR1937Mad874
AppellantSri Sri Rajah Krishna Chandra Gajapathi Narayana Deo Garu, Rajah of Parlakimedi
RespondentKuppili Ramajogi Dora
Excerpt:
- - section 32 clearly provides that before any section of the act can be made applicable, it must be distinctly so done by means of a notification in the gazette, and when the statute states that a particular thing should be provided for expressly, it must be taken that that power by necessary implication was not intended to be conferred. therefore when the plaintiff attempted to remove the produce in his carts, defendant 1's officials were perfectly in order in obstructing the removal and detaining them in the said forest until the permit was obtained or the seigniorage paid before its removal......concerned, nothing has been alleged against its bona fides. what the plaintiff alleged was, as the forest produce belonged to him, defendant 1 had no right to meddle with it and sell it and the public auction was therefore wrongful and defendant 1 is liable to him as and for damages for wrongful conversion of his goods. the plea raised by defendant 1 was that he had a right to seize the goods under section 67, madras forest act; even otherwise he had a right to prevent the produce being taken away out of the forest without the seigniorage being paid therefor and as the plaintiff had no right to the goods in respect of which he had not paid seigniorage, the plaintiff had no right to claim the value thereof. a further plea of defendant 1 was that as the bags were being eaten away by white.....
Judgment:

Venkataramana Rao, J.

1. This second appeal arises out of a suit filed by the plaintiff for recovery among other things of a sum of Rs. 316 made up of Rs. 300 being the value of two garces of vippa kernel and Rs. 16 being the value of 32 gunnies, which according to him were wrongfully sold by the agents of defendant 1. A few facts may be stated to appreciate the claim put forward by the plaintiff. This forest produce was admittedly collected in the forests of defendant 1. Under the rules framed in virtue of the provisions of the Forest Act to regulate the management of the forest lands in the Parlakimedi Estate, the plaintiff is not entitled to remove the said produce without a permit being obtained from the forest officials of the estate or paying the seigniorage therefor. On 11th October 1927 the plaintiff had this produce loaded in four carts and without obtaining a permit or paying the seigniorage was about to remove the same from the forest. Thereupon the forest officials obstructed and stopped them. For nearly eight months thereafter the plaintiff neither obtained the permit nor paid the seigniorage and removed the said produce. The officials of the zamindar found that the produce was getting deteriorated and if it was kept any longer, it was likely to perish. Thereupon, they obtained permission from defendant 1 to have it sold in public auction. Accordingly notices were issued, the produce was sold in public auction and a sum of Rs. 75 was realized.

2. So far as the public auction is concerned, nothing has been alleged against its bona fides. What the plaintiff alleged was, as the forest produce belonged to him, defendant 1 had no right to meddle with it and sell it and the public auction was therefore wrongful and defendant 1 is liable to him as and for damages for wrongful conversion of his goods. The plea raised by defendant 1 was that he had a right to seize the goods Under Section 67, Madras Forest Act; even otherwise he had a right to prevent the produce being taken away out of the forest without the seigniorage being paid therefor and as the plaintiff had no right to the goods in respect of which he had not paid seigniorage, the plaintiff had no right to claim the value thereof. A further plea of defendant 1 was that as the bags were being eaten away by white ants he ordered the goods to be sold in auction. The District Munsif took the view that Section 67, Madras Forest Act, did not apply to the case, that the sale was wrongful, that the plaintiff was not bound by the auction and that the proper price of the goods was Rs. 156; he therefore gave a decree for the said sum in favour of the plaintiff. The learned Subordinate Judge was of the opinion that Section 67 would apply to the case but that defendant 1 was not a District Forest Officer within the meaning of the section, that he had no right to seize the goods and sell the same and he therefore confirmed the decree of the learned District Munsif.

3. This decision is canvassed as unsound on behalf of defendant 1. Three contentions were raised on his behalf: (1) that Section 67 applied to the case and defendant 1 was a District Forest Officer within the meaning of the said section; (2) that even if Section 67 was not made expressly applicable, it must be deemed to be applicable by necessary implication by virtue of Sections 4 to 19 and 26, Forests Act having been made applicable to the case; and (3) that as defendant 1 had a right to detain the goods when no permit was taken from his officials and as the goods were not removed for a period of eight months and they were about to perish, he was within his rights in selling the goods and he can be made accountable if at all only for the amount realized by him at the auction sale less the seigniorage, which was due to him before the removal of the goods.

4. In regard to the first point whether Section 67 would apply to the case, I am of opinion that unless it is made expressly applicable, the power Under Section 67 cannot be invoked. Under Section 32 the owner of any land may with a view to the formation or conservation of forest thereon represent in writing to the Collector his desire that all or any of the provisions of this Act or Rules made thereunder be applied to such land, and the Government may by notification in the Fort Saint George Gazette apply to such land such provisions of this Act as it thinks suitable to the circumstances thereof and as may be desired by the applicants. It has been brought to my notice that by virtue of such a notification in the Gazette, Sections 4 to 19 and 26 have been made applicable; but no other provision of the Act has been made expressly applicable to the locality wherein the subject matter of the suit claim for the said forest produce has been collected. Section 67 has therefore been made not applicable.

5. The next question is whether Section 67 can be deemed to have been made applicable by necessary implication. The contention is put thus: Sections 4 to 19 have been made applicable expressly; they are provisions which confer rights and when a right is conferred, all the remedies for the purpose of effectuating those rights must also be deemed to have been conferred; Section 67 only confers a remedy for non-payment of money due in respect of the forest produce and therefore would apply by necessary implication. I am unable to accept this argument. Section 32 clearly provides that before any section of the Act can be made applicable, it must be distinctly so done by means of a notification in the Gazette, and when the statute states that a particular thing should be provided for expressly, it must be taken that that power by necessary implication was not intended to be conferred.

6. The last argument on behalf of the appellant deserves consideration. Under Rule 8 of the Rules made under the provisions of the Forest Act applicable to this Estate, the felling, the removal of trees, the collection or removal of the forest produce can be effected in one or other of the ways provided therein. One of the ways mentioned in the said rule is that it cannot be collected or removed without a permit issued by the authorized person. Again, Rule 9 provides that such permits should be obtained before the collection or removal of the goods is commenced. It is thus clear that no person is entitled to collect or remove the forest produce from and out of defendant 1's forest without a permit or paying the seigniorage due in respect thereof. Therefore when the plaintiff attempted to remove the produce in his carts, defendant 1's officials were perfectly in order in obstructing the removal and detaining them in the said forest until the permit was obtained or the seigniorage paid before its removal. The detention cannot therefore be said to be wrongful, In this case the goods were not sought to be removed for a period of nearly eight months. The plaintiff would not take the permit or pay the seigniorage and on the evidence I must take it that the officials of defendant 1 with the bona fide belief that the produce was getting deteriorated took his permission and had the properties sold in public auction. Where a person is entitled to detain the goods and prevent the same being taken away without certain conditions being complied with by the owner of the said goods and if they are of perishable nature and are about to be lost to the owner unless immediate steps are taken to preserve it, it is certainly competent to the person who detains the goods to have them sold and have the sale proceeds in deposit for the use and benefit of the owner of the goods, and the method of sale adopted by the zamindar, I think, is the proper and. rightful method in order to prevent the bona fides of the sale being attacked later. As rightly observed by the learned Subordinate Judge, if the goods had been sold eight months later and that too in public auction, they might have fetched a lower amount. That it fetched only a sum of Rs. 75 cannot be attributed to any act or default on the part of defendant 1. This sum of Rs. 75 defendant 1 will have no right to keep from the plaintiff. He is in equity bound to return the same to the plaintiff.

7. The next question is, is defendant 1 entitled to claim any seigniorage and if he is entitled to the said sum of money, whether he can pay the balance alone to the plaintiff? It seems to me that the plaintiff will only be entitled to get the value of the produce less the seigniorage, but no claim in respect of seigniorage has been specifically put forward by the zamindar, no issue raised relating thereto and finding given. I must therefore disallow the claim raised on behalf of the zamindar. In the result, the decree of the lower Appellate Court is modified by awarding Rs. 75 plus Rs. 16 to the plaintiff. In the circumstances, I direct each party to bear his own costs in the second appeal. (Leave to appeal asked for is refused.)


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