1. Both Courts have found Exhibit D to be genuine. The first question argued before us on behalf of the appellants is that the District Judge's view that Exhibit D did not require registration because the rent reserved is payable in grain is erroneous. The District Judge has based his opinion on an unreported judgment of this Court in S.A. No. 1524 of 1901. But upon reading the proviso to Section 17 Clause (d) of the Registration Act, we are, with all deference to the learned Judges who decided the second appeal referred to above, unable to hold that the proviso only refers to rent payable in money. The enactment in question is in these words: 'Provided that the Local Government may, by order published in the local official Gazette, exempt from the operation of this sub-section any leases executed in any district, or part of a district, the terms granted by which, do not exceed five years and the annual rents reserved by which do not exceed fifty rupees.' There seems to be nothing in that language to confine its operation to money rent and we do not perceive any reason why any such narrow construction should be placed upon the words as to exclude rent payable in grain as is the case here. Suppose the rent reserved was payable in so much gold or silver exceeding Rs. 50, should that make any difference? We should think not. Or, suppose the rent reserved was Its. 50 and a certain quantity of grain, would not that be -rent exceeding Rs. 50? We are clearly of opinion that the rent mentioned in the proviso under discussion was not intended to be limited to rent payable in money.
2. Then, it has not been found by the lower Courts whether the value of the grain rent reserved exceeded Rs. 50 at the time of the execution of Exhibit D. But the onus of showing that it did not exceed that amount lay on the plaintiff who must contend that Exhibit D on which he relies was exempted from the operation of Clause (d) of Section 17 of the Registration Act by virtue of the proviso. We have not been referred to any evidence to show that the value of the grain payable was less than Rs. 50. On the other hand, the evidence of the plaintiff himself is that the value exceeded Rs. 50.
3. But it is contended on behalf of the respondent that he is entitled to compensation for use and occupation of the land. The learned District Judge has not considered this question at all, and before we decide it, it is necessary that we should have the finding of the District Judge both ' as to the plaintiff's title to the land and the amount of compensation he would be entitled to for its use and occupation by the 1st defendant during the years in dispute in the appeal.
4. We, therefore, request the District Judge to ' return findings on the following questions:
1. Whether the plaintiff had valid title to the land in dispute at the date of Exhibit D?
2. If so, what would be the reasonable compensation for use and occupation of the land by the defendants during the year 1903?
5. Both the parties will be at liberty to adduce fresh evidence. The findings should be returned within two months from the date of this order and seven days will be allowed for filing objections.
6. [The finding was returned that the plaintiff had no valid title at the date of Exhibit D. Accepting the finding, the High Court reversed the judgment of the lower Court].