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Sundarappier Vs. Sri La Sri Kasi Vasi Chokkalinga Thambiran Avergal - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtChennai
Decided On
Reported inAIR1925Mad1059
AppellantSundarappier
RespondentSri La Sri Kasi Vasi Chokkalinga Thambiran Avergal
Cases ReferredLakshmindra Thirtha Swamiar v. Vibhudapriya Thirthaswamiar A.I.R.
Excerpt:
- .....evidence about it. the evidence on plaintiff's side is not at all satisfactory, and there is a denial on the side of the defendants that any trees were cut. i do not think it can be said that the value of the house has been in any way decreased by any act of vandalism on the part of the 1st defendant or his predecessor, the deceased thambiran. that being so, i think the decree of the subordinate judge is correct.7. the second appeal fails and is dismissed with costs.8. seeing that the defendant is willing to hand over the house to the plaintiff and the plaintiff is willing to take the house in full satisfaction of the decree, i order that the defendant do deliver the house to the plaintiff on or before the 1st december 1924, and the plaintiff will enter up satisfaction of the decree.
Judgment:

Devadoss, J.

1. The point argued in this second appeal is that the debt was incurred for a purpose which could bind the mutt and that, therefore, the 1st defendant is liable to pay the plaint debt. The Subordinate Judge held that the debt was incurred by the predecessor-in-office of the 1st defendant and the debt was incurred for a purpose which could not bind the mutt properties in the hands of the 1st defendant. The contention of Mr. Seshagiri Sastri is that there was no granary in the village where the mutt has about sixteen velies of land, that a granary was necessary for the purpose of storing paddy and that, therefore, the purchase of a house in the village by the Thambiran who was then the head of the mutt wag an act of a prudent manager. It is in evidence that there was some manikats in sudra and Paraya quarters; but it is suggested that a granary in that locality would not be a suitable residence for a Brahmin agent. But the question is not what is suitable to the agent, but what is necessary for the purpose of managing the properties of the mutt efficiently. If a granary was necessary for the purpose of storing paddy in that place, then it might be considered whether it was a prudent act of management to build one in that place. Mr. Sankaranarayana who appears for the respondent draws my attention to the fact that the lands in this village were leased to the tenants and that the tenants were in possession of the lands and that there was no necessity at ail for the mutt to have a granary. There were manikats, or house sites, in the village, and if the mutt wanted to have a granary, one could have been built on one of the sites, and there was not much wisdomin buying a dwelling house for the purpose. In these circumstances I do not think that the borrowing of money for the purpose of buying a house in the village was for a purpose which could bind the institution.

2. It is also in evidence that there was another house in the village. It seems to have been purchased subsequent to the purchase of the house for which the plaint debt was incurred. If it was purchased by the previous Thambiran, it only shows that the purchase of more than one house cannot be considered to have been the act on a prudent manager. The head on an institution like this has no right to incur a debt for the purpose of buying a house which may be used as a granary. At that time there was no pressing necessity for a granary, seeing that all the lands were in the hands of lessees. I think in the circumstances the Subordinate Judge has come to the right conclusion that the debt was not incurred for a purpose which could bind the mutt.

3. The 1st defendant is willing that the plaintiff should proceed against the house that was purchased with the money borrowed from him. But he wants also to proceed against the assets of the deceased Thambiran in his hands.

4. It would be difficult to postulate what the assets of the deceased Thambiran are. Mr. Seshagiri Sastri's contention is that all the savings including the income and the outstandings will be the personal assets of the deceased Thambiran. In support of this contention he relied upon a recent decision of this Court in Lakshmindra Thirtha Swamiar v. Vibhudapriya Thirthaswamiar A.I.R. 1923 Mad. 288. In that case a decree was given against the personal assets, if any, of the late Sirur Swami in the defendant's hands. There is an observation by Mr. Justice Ramesam at the close of his judgment, wherein he indicates what would be the assets in the hands of the successor which included the savings or investments of the late Sirur Swami which have not been included in the mutt property. In this case the plaintiff did not allege that the 1st defendant was in possession of any assets of the deceased. He wanted a decree for the full amount against the 1st defendant. It is suggested that the mutt has considerable income and that the whole of that income could not have been spent for the purpose of the mutt. If it is true that the mutt had considerable income and that the whole of that income was not necessary for meeting the legitimate demands of the mutt, it is difficult to see why a sum of Rs. 600 and odd should have been borrowed for the purpose of buying a house. If the late Thambiran had a large income and he was able to leave a surplus which could be called his personal assets, I fail to see why the plaintiff did not collect the amount during the previous Tbambiran's life time. The sale of the house was on 5th December 1917 and the pro-note was executed on 5th December 1917. The previous Thambiran died on Ghitrai (April-May) 1919. The suit was filed in December 1920. The Thambiran evidently lived for nearly one-and-a half years after the execution of the pro-note; and it is very strange that the plaintiff did not take the trouble of collecting the amount from the Thambiran. I do not think it would be right, in the circumstances, to give a decree against the personal assets of the late Thambiran, because that would only lead to further complication. If the plaintiff is able to show that the late Thambiran has out of the savings kept something for himself which could be called the personal assets, no doubt, he would be entitled to proceed against them. But in the absence of any evidence on that point and in the absence of a specific allegation as to that, I do not think it would be right to give a decree generally against the personal assets of the late Thambiran in the hands of the 1st defendant. It would naturally lead, as Mr. Sankaranarayana suggests, to the plaintiff's attaching the crops on the land or the income of the property as the assets of the late Thambiran. I do not think the Court should encourage any such thing in a matter like this. I think the plaintiff is not entitled to have a decree against the assets of the late Thambiran in the hands of the defendants.

5. But inasmuch as the first defendant has no objection to the plaintiff's proceedings against the house sold by the plaintiff himself to the mutt, he will be entitled to proceed against it for realising his debt.

6. It has been suggested that some of the trees have been cut by the Thambiran. There is no specific evidence about it. The evidence on plaintiff's side is not at all satisfactory, and there is a denial on the side of the defendants that any trees were cut. I do not think it can be said that the value of the house has been in any way decreased by any act of vandalism on the part of the 1st defendant or his predecessor, the deceased Thambiran. That being so, I think the decree of the Subordinate Judge is correct.

7. The second appeal fails and is dismissed with costs.

8. Seeing that the defendant is willing to hand over the house to the plaintiff and the plaintiff is willing to take the house in full satisfaction of the decree, I order that the defendant do deliver the house to the plaintiff on or before the 1st December 1924, and the plaintiff will enter up satisfaction of the decree.


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