R. Sadasivam, J.
1. Petitioner Francis Xavier seeks to revise the order on I.A. No. 577 of 1968, Under Section 5, Limitation Act, in unnumbered C.M.A. No. of 1968, on the file of the District Court, Chingleput, refusing to excuse the delay in preferring the C.M.A. against the order of the Additional Commissioner, Workmen's Compensation, Madras.
2. The petitioner's case is that he got the copy of the order of the Additional Commissioner, Workmen's Compensation, Madras, only on 14th March, 1968 by post, that his appeal was in time and that by way of abundant caution, he has filed the application to condone delay.
3. Under Section 17 of the Payment of Wages Act, an appeal may be preferred within thirty days from the date on which the order was made. But the Additional Commissioner for Workmen's Compensation does not generally pronounce orders in Court, but communicates the same to parties by post. The parties could not be expected to take steps to prefer appeal till they receive the order. In fact, this position is covered by a decision of this Court in Arumugham v. Jawahar Mills Ltd. (1956) I L.L.J. 519 .
It was held in that decision that--
The term 'made' has to be liberally construed as the date on which the order is communicated to the concerned parties and reaches them.
4. The learned District Judge, as appellate authority, has erred in assuming that the petitioner should have received the order at or about the same time when the respondent received the order. If he had taken pains to look into the postal cover received by the petitioner from the Additional Commissioner (now perused by me), he would have seen that the petitioner received the order by post on 14th March, 1968, as pleaded by him. In fact, it is surprising that the Advocate for the petitioner did not bring this fact to the notice of the appellate authority.
5. The order of the District Judge, refusing to excuse delay and entertain the C.M.A. is wrong. There is really no delay; and even if it is construed that limitation runs-from the date of order, the delay has to be excused on the ground that the Commissioner, Workmen's Compensation was responsible for it by reason of his not having communicated the order even on the date on which it was made. The delay is therefore excused. There will be no order as to costs.