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In Re: Kollipara Venkamma - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
CourtChennai
Decided On
Judge
Reported in17Ind.Cas.391
AppellantIn Re: Kollipara Venkamma
Cases ReferredVenkata Narasimha Naidu v. Bhashyakarlu Naidu
Excerpt:
pleader and client - compromise--power of vakil to compromise--civil procedure code (act v of 1908), section 115--revision not competent when there is an appeal--position of vakil. - .....vakil's consent to bind the plaintiff in the decision of the suit. it is admitted that the vakil's vakalat empowered him to compromise the suit but the contention is that without a special and separate vakalat (other than the engagement vakalat which empowered the vakil to compromise), the vakil's consent to the rate of maintenance proposed by the other side is not binding on the plaintiff.3. i see no reason to hold that a vakil who has got a vakalat empowering him to compromise an action should get a second vakalat which contains the same power simply because the first vikalat empowers him to do other things also besides empowering him to compromise. a vakil in the indian courts is both the solicitor who acts and a counsel who pleads for his client. in matheus v. munster 57.....
Judgment:

1. The petitioner who was plaintiff before the District Munsif's Court could have appealed to the District Court against the Munsif's decision, if she considered that decision was legally wrong. If she had done so, and if she failed even in appeal, she could have come up in second appeal to this Court, in a suit relating to a claim for maintenance.

2. Instead of doing so, she has put in this revision petition under Section 115 of the Civil Procedure Code, 225 days after District Munsif's decision. This is not a case in which 'No appeal lies' to the High Court and hence Section 115 cannot apply. There is no question of jurisdiction, perversely illegal decision, or material irregularity of procedure involved but only a question whether the District Munsif committed an error of law in allowing the plaintiff's Vakil's consent to bind the plaintiff in the decision of the suit. It is admitted that the Vakil's vakalat empowered him to compromise the suit but the contention is that without a special and separate vakalat (other than the engagement vakalat which empowered the Vakil to compromise), the Vakil's consent to the rate of maintenance proposed by the other side is not binding on the plaintiff.

3. I see no reason to hold that a Vakil who has got a vakalat empowering him to compromise an action should get a second vakalat which contains the same power simply because the first vikalat empowers him to do other things also besides empowering him to compromise. A Vakil in the Indian Courts is both the Solicitor who acts and a Counsel who pleads for his client. In Matheus v. Munster 57 L.J.Q.B. 49 it was held that, where the defendant's Counsel, in the absence of the defendant and without his express authority, assented to a verdict for the plaintiff for 350 with costs and withdrew all imputations against the plaintiff, the settlement was a matter which was within the apparent general authority of Counsel and was binding on the defendant. In Butler v. Knight 36 L.J. Ex. 66 it was held that, even when the client had expressly prohibited her Solicitor to accept any compromise, and even though she had obtained judgment and decree, she was bound by the act of her Solicitor in accepting a compromise so far as the other party was concerned, if that other party had no notice of any limitation having been imposed on her Solicitor's authority and that her only remedy lay in an action for negligence against her Solicitor. In the present case, the Vakil had express authority to compromise the suit. I think that serious inconvenience would result to the administration of justice by Courts if, even after a Vakil has been given power to compromise the suit by the plaintiff who engages him and after the opposite party, on the faith of that vakalat, has offered terms of compromise which were accepted and acted upon, and after the Court has, on the faith of the assurance of the legal practitioners, passed its decision by their consent, the plaintiff should be allowed to take the objection that she did not give a special second vakalat mentioning only the power to compromise. There is no allegation even in the revision petition that she had prohibited the Vakil to compromise the suit notwithstanding that the vakalat to act gave him such power and that the defendant knew that her Vakil had no such power (that the vakalat gave him such power is spoken to by her Vakil who was examined in the review petition case. See Mr. Gomoji Row's order on the Review Petition.)

4. The Privy Council held, in Rajunder Narain Rae v. Bijai Gobind Singh 2 M.I.A. 253 that when a Vakil admitted that the rental of a zemindari in dispute was a certain sum, the admission was binding on his client. Jagapati Mudaliar v. Ekambara Mudaliar 21 M.k 274 was a case in which the vakalat did not give power to the Vakil to compromise the suit. That there is no distinction between Vakils and Counsel in these matters is clear from Venkata Narasimha Naidu v. Bhashyakarlu Naidu 22 M.k 538.

5. This petition in revision put in by the plaintiff is, therefore, rejected.


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