1. The question for consideration in the case is whether a memorandum of appeal presented to the Court of the District Judge under the law applicable to appeals, which has been transferred to this Court on an application by the appellant should bear court-fee stamp as prescribed for a memorandum of appeal presented to this Court. The appeal was brought to this Court at the instance and on the application of the party himself. The party wanted to have his appeal filed in the Court of the District Judge, heard by this Court as analogous to certain other appeals pending in this Court. The application made in that behalf must, in my judgment, be taken to have the effect of presentation of the appeal to this Court, which could not have been done in ordinary course under the law. The presentation of the appeal to the Court of the District Judge was in accordance with law; but by act of the party concerned sanctioned by this Court, it was transferred to this Court. The appeal must in the circumstances by operation of law be taken to have been presented to this Court. The party wanted to have his appeal heard by this Court, and the court-fee payable for an appeal to be heard by this Court is the fee prescribed for a memorandum of appeal presented to this Court, and not the fee prescribed for a memorandum of appeal presented in the Court of the District Judge, and which was to be heard by this Court. It may be mentioned that I find no reason to differ from the decision given by two different Registrars on the appellate side of this Court, on two previous occasions, in cases similar to the one now before me.
2. No authority, statutory or otherwise, could be found in support of the contention urged before me on behalf of the appellant whose appeal has been transferred to this Court for hearing on his own application; and the ground that was pressed before me was that a fiscal statute should be interpreted strictly in favour of the subject, and against the Crown. The proposition, as it stands, does not admit of any controversy. The case before me however does not permit the following of a procedure of levying court-fee which in my judgment would not be justifiable under the law. There is no question of a strict or a liberal interpretation of a fiscal statute; the question is whether a party who wanted to have his appeal heard by a particular Court could evade payment of proper court-fee leviable for an appeal to be heard by that Court. In view of the conclusion arrived at by me, as mentioned above, the appellant is directed to put in additional court-fee for the memorandum of appeal transferred to this Court, as proposed by the Stamp Reporter of this Court.