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Srinath Bose and ors. Vs. Nibaran Chandra Roy and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
CourtKolkata
Decided On
Judge
Reported in53Ind.Cas.945
AppellantSrinath Bose and ors.
RespondentNibaran Chandra Roy and ors.
Cases ReferredGhosh v. Rameswari Pasu
Excerpt:
hindu, law - family dispute, settlement of, by female--court, duty of-reversioners, whether can question settlement. - .....of first instance, has given, a decree declaring the right of the plaintiff .in respect of the lands of schedule i and. disagreeing with that court has given a decree for possession and mesne profits in respect of a one-third share of the lends of schedule ii. the claim with respect to the lands of schedules iii and iv' his been dismissed by both the courts below.4. the plaintiffs have appealed with reference to the lands of schedules iii and iv and the defendants have preferred a aross. objection in respect of the lands of schedule ii.5. the main question for consideration in this appeal is whether the compromise entered into by sital moni is binding upon the plaintiffs.6. there can be no double that there was final settlement of disputes and of the rights of each party and that if.....
Judgment:

1. This appeal arises out of a suit for establishment of the plaintiffs' right to, and possession of, the properties in dispute, which are described in the four schedules to the plaint.

2. The plaintiffs are the daughter's sons and sole heirs of one Radha Krishna Roy. Radha Krishna left a daughter Sital Moni and the plaintiffs, grandsons, by that daughter. The defendants are the heirs of Ram Kanai and Dinabandhu, who were the brothers of Radha Krishna. The name of one Kumeda Charan Roy, who was the father of the defendants Nos. 1 to 4, may be mentioned here. It aopsars that after the death of Radha Krishna, Kumeda charan asserted that he had been adopted by Radha Krishna and laid claim to the estate left by him. In the year 188i, Sital Mini brought a suit for establish ment of her right to a share of the estate as the heiress of her father Radha Krishna. The suit was brought against Kumeda .Charan and the other heirs of Ram Kanai and Dinabandhu. It was contested by Kumeda alone and it appears that the other defendants were subseqently discharged from the action. The suit was terminated by a Solenamah entered into between Sital Moni and Kumeda Charan on the 24th July 1883. Under this Solenamah, the dispute between the parties was settled; Kumeda Charan, defendant No. 1 in that suit, gave up his claim as the adopted son of Radha Krishna and his claim to certain properties; Sital Moni also gave up certain properties in favour of Kumeda Charan and her right to the rest of the properties was declared. There was subsequently a suit for partition brought by Sital Moni which was based upon the Solenamah; and lastly there was a suit for mesne profits brought by the lady against the defendants, which again ended in a compromise, Sital Moni died in January 1902 and the present suit was instituted by her eons, plaintiffs Nos. 1 and 2, for establishment of their right in respect of certain properties, their title to which had been denied or of which they had been dispossessed by the defendants.

3. The Court of Appeal below, agreeing with the Court of first instance, has given, a decree declaring the right of the plaintiff .in respect of the lands of Schedule I and. disagreeing with that Court has given a decree for possession and mesne profits in respect of a one-third share of the lends of Schedule II. The claim with respect to the lands of Schedules III and IV' his been dismissed by both the Courts below.

4. The plaintiffs have appealed with reference to the lands of Schedules III and IV and the defendants have preferred a aross. objection in respect of the lands of Schedule II.

5. The main question for consideration in this appeal is whether the compromise entered into by Sital Moni is binding upon the plaintiffs.

6. There can be no double that there was final settlement of disputes and of the rights of each party and that if the settlement was bona fide, it was binding ritpdn1 the reversioners.

7. Iu the case of Khunni Lal v. Gobind Krishna Narain (1) 10 Ind. Cas. 477; 38 I. A. 87 at p. 102; 33 A. 356: 2; M. h. J. 646; (1911) 1 M. W. N. 432; 10 M. L. T. 25; 13 Bom. L. K. 427; 13 C. L. J. 575; 8 A. L. J. 552; 15 0. W. N. 545 (P.C.). the Judical Committee observed that they had no hesitation in adopting the view taken in the case of Oudh Beharee v. Ranse Mewa Koonwer (2) 3 Agra H. C. R. 82 at p. 81., where the learned Judges say as follows: ' The true character of the transaction appears to us to have been a settlement between the several members of the family of their disputes, each one relinquishing all claim in respect of all property in dispute other than that falling to his share and recognising the right of the others as they had previously asserted it to the portion allotted to them respectively. It was in this light rather than as conferring a new distinct title on each other that the parties themselves seem to have regarded the arrangement, and we think that it is the duty of the Courts to uphold and give full effect to such an arrangement.'

8. That case was followed by their Lordships in the case of Hiran Bibi v. Sohan Bibi (3) 24 Ind. Cas. 309; 18 C. W. N. 929; 27 M. L. J. 149; 1 L. W. 648 (P.C). Their Lordships were of opinion that the facts of the case brought it within the decision in Khunni Lai v. Gobind Krishna Narain (1), in other words, that the compromise in question was in no sense of the word an alienation by a limited owner of the family property but a family settlement in which each party took a share of the family property by virtue of the independent title which was to that extent and by way of compromise admitted by the other parties. See also the oases of Mohendra Nath Biswas v. Shamsunnessa Khatun (4) 27 Ind. Cas. 954; 21 C. L. J. 157 at pp. 162, 163; 19 C. W. N. 1280. and Shyam LA Ghosh v. Rameswari Pasu (5) 33 Ind. Cas. 273; 23 C. W. N. 82 at p. 89.

10. That there was a bona file compromise entered into in 1383 cannot be, and is hot, disputed. The very fact that one of Sital Moni's sons was an attesting witness to the petition of compromise negatives the possibility of any collusion between the parties. In the circumstances under which the suit was instituted by the lady, the compromise was beneficial to the estate, and was certainly not entered into for the personal benefit of the lady herself. In all these circumstances, the Courts below were right in holding that the compromise is binding on the plaintiffs so far as the lands of Schedule IV are concerned.

11. With regard to the lands of Schedule I, the lands which the plaintiffs claim as having been allotted to Sital Moni on partition, the Court below has declared the right of the plaintiffs. The defendants in this Court say that they did not dispossess the plaintiffs from this land and that the plaintiffs have no cause of action against the defendants. The respondents do not dispute the right of the plaintiffs to these lands and have no objection to the decree passed by the Court below for lands of this schedule, provided there is no decree for mesne profits. We think that the decree of the lower Court in so far as the lands of Schedule I are concerned should stand.

11. With regard to lands of Schedule II, the lower Appellate Court gave a decree to the plaintiffs for a one-third share of these lands. A cross-objection has been Bled on behalf of the defendants so far as these lands are concerned. It is contended (hat the lower Court has proceeded upon some presumption. It appears, however, that there was no denial in the written statement that the lands of this schedule formed part of the joint family property and we, are told that there is some evidence in support of the finding of the lower Court. We think that the cross-objection should be dismissed.

12. There remain only the lands of Schedule III. Both the Courts have held that no cause of action has been disclosed in the plaint and that it does not appear that these lands belong to the estate held by Radha Krishna. We are not disposed to interfere with the order of the lower Court so far as these lands are concerned.

13. On behalf of the appellant, objection was taken to the order for separate sets of costs to the defendants. The question of costs, however, is in the discretion of the Court and we do not wish to interfere in the matter.

14. The result is that both the appeal and the cross objection are dismissed. Each party will bear his own costs in this Court.


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