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Gungapersad and ors. Vs. Gogun Sing - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtKolkata
Decided On
Judge
Reported in(1878)ILR3Cal323
AppellantGungapersad and ors.
RespondentGogun Sing
Excerpt:
registration - dowl fehrist--act viii of 1871. - .....below, and apparently dismissing the suit on the ground of the reception of a document called dowl fehrist, which, in the opinion of the lower appellate court, was inadmissible, because it was not registered and not stamped. it is not discoverable from the judgment of the munsif that any objection had been taken to the dowl in the court of first instance on that ground. the contest before him appears to have been whether the dowl was genuine or not,--that is to say, whether it recorded facts which were actually true. but the judge holds that it was nothing more or less than the record of the new rates of rent, and that the signatures of the ryots were taken to it in testimony of their agreement to cultivate the lands at the rate mentioned. it specified seven years as the period for.....
Judgment:

L.S. Jackson, J.

1. The question that arises in this special appeal is whether the lower Appellate Court is right in reversing the decree of the Court below, and apparently dismissing the suit on the ground of the reception of a document called dowl fehrist, which, in the opinion of the lower Appellate Court, was inadmissible, because it was not registered and not stamped. It is not discoverable from the judgment of the Munsif that any objection had been taken to the dowl in the Court of first instance on that ground. The contest before him appears to have been whether the dowl was genuine or not,--that is to say, whether it recorded facts which were actually true. But the Judge holds that it was nothing more or less than the record of the new rates of rent, and that the signatures of the ryots were taken to it in testimony of their agreement to cultivate the lands at the rate mentioned. It specified seven years as the period for which these holdings were to continue, and should therefore have been registered'. Now it seems that the plaintiff when he filed his plaint, filed not only the jumma-wasil-bakees relating to the years in dispute, but at a later stage of the case a document was also filed, which, as Mr. Hallett says, 'it pleased the plaintiff to call a dowl fehrist'. Mr. Hallett does not say why the plaintiff should not have been pleased to call it a dowl fehrist, nor does he suggest any other appropriate, name by which it ought to be called. But the use of it is to be found in the judgment of the Munsif. He says: 'From the testimony of the plaintiff's witnesses, who are trustworthy persons and proprietors of the mouza, as well as from that of the patwari, the writer of the dowl, it is fully proved that the dowl was prepared correctly and faithfully, and that it was accepted by all the tenants,' and there was evidence which the Munsif accepted to show that rent had been collected from the ryots afterwards in accordance with that dowl. Therefore we understand the dowl was merely a memorandum or record by the zemindar's agents of the rent which had been settled between the zemindar and the ryots, and that the various ryots affixed their signatures to this doivl in testimony of their admission of the correctness of the jumma thereon recited as having been imposed on them. The dowl was not in itself a contract. It was no more a contract than are chittas or measurement papers, or what are called suruthalic papers, which are constantly signed by ryots, monduls, and other persons in testimony of their concurrence. It appears to us that there is nothing in the law to require a dowl fehrist to be either registered or stamped, nor, on the other hand, is it a document which could be regarded as binding or conclusive evidence of a contract. It is a matter of observation of course, and throws the burthen of explanation upon any ryot who having put his signature to it, afterwards disputes the facts which it recites. It may fairly be asked how came you to sign this document if you were not a consenting party to it. It seems to us, therefore, that the Judge was wrong in saying that this document was inadmissible, and that he ought to have taken it into consideration together with the other evidence. The case will be remanded to the lower Appellate Court accordingly.


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