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Haripada Dutta Vs. Ramsristi Kundu S/O Kedar Nath Kundu - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectCivil
CourtKolkata
Decided On
Reported inAIR1943Cal250
AppellantHaripada Dutta
RespondentRamsristi Kundu S/O Kedar Nath Kundu
Cases ReferredNara Narayan Mandal v. Aghore Chandra Ganguly
Excerpt:
- .....at rs. 100. the appellate officer increased it to rs. 220. the opposite party then moved the district judge under section 40a. under that section, he is forbidden to hear the parties or any body 1 appearing on their behalf. he may, if he is satisfied that there has been a substantial failure of justice, modify or reverse the order. with all due respect to the learned judge, i find it difficult to understand his order. he stated that he did not know which of the calculations was correct. as i am not forbidden to hear the parties, i have had the advantage of hearing the arguments on both sides and it is not disputed that there is no error in calculation. the board awarded interest at 6 per cent, per annum, while the appellate officer awarded it at the rate in the hand-note. but when.....
Judgment:
ORDER

Henderson, J.

1. This rule is directed against an order made by the learned District Judge of Bankura under Section 40A, Bengal Agricultural Debtors Act. The point at issue between the parties is really very simple. Under Section 18 of the Act the Board settled the interest at Rs. 100. The appellate officer increased it to Rs. 220. The opposite party then moved the District Judge under Section 40A. Under that section, he is forbidden to hear the parties or any body 1 appearing on their behalf. He may, if he is satisfied that there has been a substantial failure of justice, modify or reverse the order. With all due respect to the learned Judge, I find it difficult to understand his order. He stated that he did not know which of the calculations was correct. As I am not forbidden to hear the parties, I have had the advantage of hearing the arguments on both sides and it is not disputed that there is no error in calculation. The Board awarded interest at 6 per cent, per annum, while the appellate officer awarded it at the rate in the hand-note. But when the learned Judge was unable to say that the appellate officer was wrong, I cannot understand how he can be satisfied that there has been a substantial failure of justice.

2. Nor does the difficulty end there. He reversed the order of the appellate officer but he did not in terms restore the order of the Board. He directed the present petitioner to apply to the Board in review. The powers of the Board to review their orders are laid down in Section 44 of the Act. These powers are given by the section itself subject to any rules made under the Act. Under Rule 91A the Board is forbidden to review an order when an appeal has been preferred against it. The Board has therefore no jurisdiction to entertain any application for review. The rule was opposed by Mr. Roy Choudhury on the ground that this Court has no power to interfere under Section 115, Civil P.C., on the ground that the District Judge is a persona designata. I had to deal with a similar question arising under the Municipal Act in Nara Narayan Mandal v. Aghore Chandra Ganguly ('35) 63 Cal. 136. The similarity to the present case is that under Section 40A the District Judge has power to transfer any case to an Additional District Judge subordinate to him. The use of those words is, in my opinion, sufficient to show that the powers of revision have been given to the Court of the District Judge and not to a persona designata. Then, in the second place, it was contended by Mr. Roy Choudhury that this Court under Section 115 cannot interfere with an order settling a debt under Section 18, Bengal Agricultural Debtors Act. I accept that argument. Sub-section 4 is in these terms:

When the Board has determined under Sub-section (2) the amount of the principal of a debt due from a debtor and of the arrears of interest due thereon, the decision of the Board in this respect shall not be questioned in any civil Court or in any manner other than that provided in this Act.

3. The Act does not provide for any appeal or revision in this Court. Under the new definition of Section 2 (6)(a) the term 'civil Court' includes any Court exercising revisional jurisdiction over any Court within the meaning of the Bengal, Agra and Assam Civill Courts Act. It therefore includes this Court exercising revisional jurisdiction under Section 115. I would therefore not interfere with the order made by the Board. It is now clear that there is no dispute about the calculation. The point is whether the interest should be calculated at the rate in the hand-note or at the rate arbitrarily fixed by the Board. It is conceded that the order of the appellate officer does not infringe the provisions of the Bengal Money-Lenders Act. What the learned Judge therefore ought to have done was to consider whether there had been a substantial failure of justice by reason of the order of the appellate officer allowing interest at the rate provided in the document. The rule is accordingly made absolute. The order of the District Judge is set aside and the case is remanded to him in order that he may determine it in accordance with law. I make no order as to costs.


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