1. We are unable to agree with the learned District Judge that Section 148 or 151, Civil Procedure Code, could enable a Court after a decree had become final to change the terms of the decree [See Suranjan Singh v. Bam Bahal Lal 17 Ind. Qas. 912 : 10 A.L.J. 520.]
2. The first defendant declared his inability to stand the test,' that is, he admitted that he could not prove his competency for the office. As regards the second defendant, the learned District Judge's finding, as to his competency, is somewhat obscure. In one place, the Judge says : The second defendant on the other hand showed much improvement in learning and in reciting the mantras, though the Commissioner was not perfectly satisfied with the result'. In another place, the Judge says that the second defendant also should undergo another test and prove his competency.
3. We shall request the District Judge to submit definite findings on the- following issues on the evidence on record :
Whether the second defendant was fairly cognizant of the mantrams mentioned in the decree, and whether he was fairly fit for the office of archaka when the District Munsif granted a declaration as to his unfitness.
if the second defendant was fairly fit at that time, whether the plaintiffs are entitled to any relief under the decree and, if so, what relief?
4. The findings should be submitted within four weeks from date of receipt of records and ten days will be allowed for filing objections.
5. In compliance with the order contained in the above judgment, the District Judge of Guntur submitted the following
FINDINGS.--The High Court has called for findings in this case on the following two issues :
(1) Whether the 2nd defendant was fairly cognizant of the mantrams mentioned in the decree, and whether he was fairly fit for the office of archaka when the District Munsif granted a declaration as to his unfitness,
(2) If the 2nd defendant was fairly fit at that time, whether the plaintiffs are entitled to any relief under the decree and, if so, to what relief?
6. The answer to the 1st issue depends mainly upon the report of the Pandit appointed as a Commissioner by the lower Court to test the knowledge of defendants Nos. 1 and 2 of the mantrams referred to in the decree, and his evidence. His report shows that he found the 2nd defendant very deficient in his knowledge of one of the said mantrams, Desantulu, for he recited two imperfectly and did not know the remaining eight at all. It also appears from the Commissioner's evidence that these mantrams have to be recited daily, and they, therefore, appear to be important. As regards the other mantrams, the report of the Commissioner shows that the 2nd defendant recited them badly and that his knowledge of them was poor. The 2nd defendant was apparently himself conscious of this, for when on the 7th April 1911, he applied to the lower Court for extension of time to qualify himself in mantrams, he admitted that his knowledge was deficient. The defendants rely on the Pandit's statement in his evidence which runs thus : 'Comparing the knowledge of the defendants with the knowledge of the average archaka, they cannot be called incompetent.' This statement is a loose one, for it includes, the 1st defendant also as to whose incompetence there was no doubt, and I do not, therefore, think it can be safely acted upon. I would, therefore, find the 1st issue in the negative.
7. The 2nd issue does not arise in view of the finding on the 1st issue. Were a finding necessary, I would say that, in the event of the 2nd defendant being found fairly fit, the plaintiffs would be entitled to no relief.
8. This appeal coming for final hearing this day after the return of the finding of the lower Appellate Court upon the issues referred by this Court for trial, the Court delivered the following.
9. We accept the finding and reverse the decree of the District Judge and restore that of the District Munsif with costs here and in the lower Appellate Court.