L.S. Jackson, J.
1. The special appeal before us is one of three arising out of three suits brought by different persons, who all allege themselves to be sons of the Rajah of Punchookootee, born of women of low condition, but not dasis or recognised handmaids, who are referred to in the evidence regarding a certain custom to which I shall presently refer. The plaintiff claimed to receive from the defendant Rajah allowance and arrears thereof at the rate of eight annas per day.
2. The Rajah defendant, in his written statement, set out that he was a Khetrya by caste; that the mother of the plaintiff (admitting apparently the fact of paternity) was a woman of the Lohar caste, and that consequently plaintiff had no claim to maintenance at his hands; and he then averred that there was a custom in family of that Raj to the effect that when the Rajahs marry, and certain dasis or handmaids come into their family with the bride, if it should so happen that such dasis become pregnant and bear children to the Rajah, then maintenance is allowed to such children; but the defendant entirely denied that the plaintiff came within that description, or was in any sense entitled to be maintained. He also said that the plaintiff (as it appears from the fact of his suing in his own name) was able to earn his livelihood by the sweat of his brow, and that I suppose may be taken as admitted....We are relieved, and I am glad that we are relieved, from considering cases in connection with the Mitakshara by an admission which appears in the course of the examination of one of the plaintiff's witnesses, and which the Judicial Commissioner ought not to have passed unnoticed, that this family is absolutely governed by the Dyabhaga. Now, as to the law of Bengal, it appears to me quite clear that no such claim as the present is countenanced. All the passages which refer to, and which enjoin, as a sacred duty, the maintenance of the family, refer, in the first instance, to what is to be done with the estate after the father had died. They also refer chiefly to provisions for persons who are disqualified from inheriting, and who, but for such disqualification, would have partaken of the inheritance.
3. We are not aware of a single passage which can be referred to in which a son by such connection as we have before us in this case is described as a proper object of maintenance....This matter is absolutely, as it seems to me, concluded by authority, for we have not one but several decisions of our own Court, among which I may instance one Pram Chand Pepara v. Hulas Chand Pepara 4 B.L.R., Ap., 23; s.c. 12 W.R., 494, and another, Man Mohini Dasi v. Balak Chandra Pandit 8 B.L.R., 22; s.c., 15 W.R., 398, where claims of maintenance standing vastly higher than the present claim and advanced against living fathers were rejected. In truth, it seems to me, looking at the rate of maintenance which the plaintiff has asked for and the still lower rate which the Courts have allowed him in this case, that it was not seriously contemplated to prefer the present claim on the footing of the plaintiff being a member of the Rajah's family. It much more resembles an attempt to extend to a grown-up and able-bodied son the sort of allowance which the Code of Criminal Procedure enables Magistrates to award to an infant illegitimate child and the mother of such child. I think, therefore, that there is no valid argument in favour of the judgment of the Courts below, that those decisions are erroneous, and must be set aside without costs, as the appellant does not apply for them. This judgment will apply to appeals Nos. 1116 and 1117 of 1877.