1. This appeal has been brought against an order of the Registrar of Trade Unions, West Bengal, by which he has cancelled a certificate of registration granted in favour of the appellant. The appeal is one under Section 11(1)(a) of the Indian Trade Unions Act of 1926. On behalf of the respondent Mr. Sen has raised a point to the effect that appeals under Section 11(1)(a) should be heard by a Judge sitting on the Original Side. His argument is that the procedure to be followed by a Judge in an appeal under Section 11 shows that the powers are analogous to the powers of a Judge trying an original suit. Sub-section (3) of Section 11 is in the following terms.
'For the purpose of an appeal under Sub-section (1) an appellate Court shall, so far as may be, follow the same procedure and have the same powers as it follows and has when trying a suit under the Code of Civil Procedure * * *.'
Mr. Sen's contention is that in view of the fact that the appellate Court is to follow the same procedure as it follows when trying a suit, it is desirable that the appeal should be heard by a Judge sitting on the Original Side. This view is supported by the observations of Costello, J., in the case of In re, Inland Steam Navigation Workers' Union : AIR1936Cal57 (decided by Derbyshire, C. J., and Costello, J.). Under Section 11(1)(a) of the Indian Trade Unions Act when an appeal is directed against an order of refusal, withdrawal or cancellation of a certificate of registration made by the Registrar in a case where the head office of the Trade Union is situated within the Presidency-town, the appeal shall lie to the High Court. Section 3 Clause (25) of the General Clauses Act, 1897, defines 'High Court' in the following terms :
' 'High Court', used with reference to civil proceedings, shall mean the highest civil court of appeal (not including the Supreme Court) in the part of India in which the Act or Regulation containing the expression operates.'
On behalf of the appellant it is contended that according to this definition the High Court means the High Court exercising its appellate jurisdiction and, therefore, the appellate Division of the High Court is the proper forum of the appeal. It has, however, been held from very early times that the definition of the words 'High Court' in Section 3 Clause (25) of the General Clauses Act includes 'High Court' in its appellate jurisdiction as well as original jurisdiction: See the decision of Sale, J., in the case of In the goods of, Mohendra Narain Roy, 5 Cal WN 377, where the question which fell for the determination of the Court was the meaning of the words 'High Court' in Section 87 of the Probate and Administration Act and his Lordship held, after referring to the definition of those words in the General Clauses Act, that the words 'High Court' meant the High Court as a whole including the appellate and original jurisdiction. This decision which was given in the year 1900 has been uniformly followed by this Court in various other cases and the latest pronouncement of this Court on that point is to be found in the judgment of Mukherjea and Roxburgh, JJ., in the case of Jnan Kumar Das v. Ram Kumar Das : AIR1940Cal264 where their Lordships in construing the meaning of the words 'High Court' in Section 301 of the Succession Act by reference to the definition given in Section 3. Clause (25), of the General Clauses Act came to the conclusion that the words 'High Court' meant High Court as a whole including the Original Side of this Court. This last decision is by a Division Bench of this Court and it is binding on us, I accordingly hold that the words 'High Court' occurring in Section 11, Sub-section (1), of the Indian Trade Unions Act mean and include the High Court in its Original Jurisdiction as well as Appellate Jurisdiction. If the words 'High Court' include this Court in its Original Jurisdiction, as I hold they do, the next question is whether an appeal of this description should be heard by a Judge on the Original Side or a Judge or Judges on the Appellate Side. I have already said that the powers of the appellate Court under Section 11, Sub-section (3), are analogous to the powers which are exercised by a Judge trying a suit and these powers include the power to summon witnesses, compel production of documents, of making orders for discovery and inspection, directing interrogatories and so on. In my opinion, these powers may conveniently be exercised by a Judge sitting on the Original Side.
2. I accordingly direct that the appeal be assigned to a Judge on the Original Side to be nominated by the Chief Justice,
3. I make no order as to costs of the hearing before us.
4. I agree.