Alfred Henry Lionel Leach, C.J.
1. On the llth June, 1941, the respondent Board granted to the second, third and fourth respondents a certificate under Section 18 of the Madras Debt Conciliation Act, 1936, to the effect that the petitioner in the present proceedings had refused a reasonable offer by his debtors. The petitioner asks for the issue of a writ of certiorari quashing this order. He says that the petition which the second, third and fourth respondents filed for the settlement of their debts did not lie as a previous application had been dismissed, but that in any event the Board had no power to grant the certificate, because more than twelve months had elapsed after the date of the filing of the application. When the facts are investigated it is quite clear that the petitioner is not entitled to the order which he seeks.
2. The application before the Board was for the settlement of the debts of the joint family of which the second, third and fourth respondents were members. There was a previous application and it was dismissed under Section 9 (a) on the ground that the Board did not consider it practicable to effect a settlement of the debts. This application was filed by the fourth respondent. It was not an application for the settlement of the debts of the family but for the settlement of his own debts. The dismissal of this application did not preclude the joint family applying for a settlement of all the debts of the family. This disposes of the first plea raised by the petitioner.
3. With regard to the second plea, the facts are not correctly stated in 'the affidavit which has been filed in support of the petition, but they are to be gathered from the affidavit filed in reply by the chairman of the Board and from the endorsements on the petition filed by the second, third and fourth respondents for the settlement of their debts. This petition is, dated the 3rd June, 1940, and was actually presented to the chairman on that date. He directed it to be placed before the Board, which met the following day. It was then discovered that the father of the petitioners, who is joint with his sons, had not joined in the application and the petition was returned to those filing it in order that this omission might be rectified. The petition was re-presented to the Board on the 14th June, 1940. The certificate granted to the second, third and fourth respondents was issued on the 11th June, 1941, that is within twelve months of the date when the petition was re-presented to the Board. The learned advocate in support of the present petition says that as Section 17 speaks of the date of the application under Section 4, the twelve months must be deemed to have commenced from the date when it was first presented,; namely, the 3rd June, 1940. It is said that that must be, taken to be the actual date of the application. As the petition was not, in order and had to be returned this argument cannot be accepted. In these circumstances the date of the application must be deemed to be the date when the petition was re-presented.
4. The petition will be dismissed with costs; in favour of the first respondent.