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N. Kesava Mudaliar Vs. V.S. Govindachariar and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
CourtChennai
Decided On
Reported inAIR1924Mad231
AppellantN. Kesava Mudaliar
RespondentV.S. Govindachariar and ors.
Cases ReferredAlbright v. Hydro Electric Power Commission
Excerpt:
- .....to be that:what is contemplated is a class of cases, in which there may be involved questions of public importance, or which may be important precedents governing numerous other cases, or in which, while the right in dispute is not expressly measurable in money, it is of great public or private importance;and coutts trotter, j., added that in his view, their lordships of the judicial committee, when speaking of private importance, should be regarded as meaning private importance to both parties to the litigation and not only to one of them. our attention has been called to a recent decision of the privy council in albright v. hydro electric power commission [1923] a.c. 167, in which their lordships dealing with a canadian case stated:it has been the policy of their lordships' board not.....
Judgment:

Schwabe, C.J.

1. This is an application for leave to appeal to the Privy Council. The suit was for an injunction and the question mainly turned on the interpretation of an agreement between two, if I may use the word 'rival', temples made many years ago. According to the contention of one temple, the other was, by reason of this agreement, permitted to hold certain processions in the streets of Madras on certain days only. According to the interpretation of the contract of the other side, they were entitled to hold their procession on those days taking a second place to the other temple but were free to hold other processions on any other day they pleased.

2. As the amount involved is incapable of valuation, the question is whether we should certify, under the Civil Procedure Code, Section 109(c), that this is a fit case for appeal to His Majesty in Council. The meaning of that section has been much discussed in this Court and in the Privy Council, and in a recent case, Raja of Ramnad v. Tiruneelakantam Servai 1923 Mad. 232, after an examination of the cases, I stated that I understood the law to be that:

what is contemplated is a class of cases, in which there may be involved questions of public importance, or which may be important precedents governing numerous other cases, or In which, while the right in dispute is not expressly measurable in money, it is of great public or private importance;and Coutts Trotter, J., added that in his view, their Lordships of the Judicial Committee, when speaking of private importance, should be regarded as meaning private importance to both parties to the litigation and not only to one of them. Our attention has been called to a recent decision of the Privy Council in Albright v. Hydro Electric Power Commission [1923] A.C. 167, in which their Lordships dealing with a Canadian case stated:

It has been the policy of their Lordships' Board not to entertain applications, which will prevent the decisions of the Supreme Court being final, on general questions connected with the mere construction of agreements, which do not raise either far-reaching questions of law or matters of dominant public importance.3. It is true that in this case the main question turns on the proper interpretation or construction of a written contract; but I think that the words 'mere construction of agreements' in the passage quoted above mean when the question to be determined does not affect rights of great public or private importance; and what we have to consider in this case is whether the result of the decision on the construction of this contract involves a matter of great public or private importance. On the whole, I think it does. There are two temples of considerable antiquity and of considerable importance. Disputes between these temples have been going on for years. The decision which we gave has, in effect, determined most of these disputes in one way; and I think it is matter of considerable private importance to both parties and almost of public importance whether we were right or wrong in the conclusion we have come to.

4. On the whole, I think there must be a certificate granted under Section 109 (c) of the Civil Procedure Code, that this is a fit case for appeal to His Majesty in Council.

5. Costs to be costs in the appeal.

Coleridge, J.

6. I should like to make it clear that it is impossible to arrive at a money valuation of the claim between the parties and I hare nothing further to add. I agree to the order proposed.


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