1. When this suit, which is undefended, was before me for hearing, I found that there was no affidavit forth-coming as to the fitness of N.C. Dutt who has signed and verified the plaint on behalf of the company to do so. I accordingly asked the registrar to report as to what had been done in this respect and reserved judgment lest the competency of the suit might thereby ha affected.
2. I am informed that the suit being by a corporation and there being a statement in the plaint that, Mr. Narayan Chandra Dutt is the banian and constituted attorney of the Calcutta branch of the plaintiff company and, as such, a principal officer of the plaintiff company. He has power to sign the plaint and the warrant on behalf of the plaintiff company and he is able to depose to the facts of this case no affidavit has been required. This I understand, is founded upon a judgment of Sale, J., in Sreenath Banerjee v. E.I. Ry. Co.  22 Cal. 268 in which the learned judge held that if a plaint or a written statement contains a statement to the effect that the person purporting to verify is a principal officer of the company or corporation and is able to depose to the facts of the case, the verification in the usual form would probably be sufficient. This judgment lays down no rule as suggested and it has been misapplied. I shall give my reasons for this presently; but first I propose to consider what the Civil Procedure Code and the rules of the Court require as regards verification of the pleadings.
3. Order 6, Rule 15(1), Civil P.C., provides that every pleading shall be verified at the foot by the party or by one of the parties pleading or by some other person proved to the satisfaction of the Court to be acquainted with the facts of the case.
4. Chap. 7, Rule 12, Rules of this Court, provides as follows:
Where any person, other than a party pleading, verifies a pleading under Order 6, Rule 15 of the code, his fitness to so verify shall he proved by his affidavit at the time the pleading is presented.
5. With the observance of these rules in suits not by a corporation I have fully dealt in my judgment of the 19th May last in Manindra Chandra Nandi v. Velji Mulji : AIR1927Cal773 , in which I came to the conclusion that no exception could be made to the mandatory provision of the rule requiring an affidavit of fitness of the person verifying to be presented with the pleadings. To this I would add that though, were it permissible, it may appear at the initial stage a case is one for relaxation of the rule, any question consequential thereupon would only arise liter when the time for enforcing the rule had long passed, which is an additional reason for saying that no exception is permissible.
6. In the case of a corporation Order 29, Rule 1, Civil P.C., provides:
In suits by or against a corporation, any pleading may be signed and verified on behalf of the corporation by the secretary or by any director or other principal officer of the corporation who is able to depose to the facts of the case.
7. This does not in my opinion, supersede the application of the rule3 already quoted, but is in amplification of them. But for such a rule it might be difficult to determine who, in the case of a corporation, is the proper person to sign or verify a pleading on its behalf, and this rule is intended to meet that difficulty, bat nothing more.
8. We then have to go back to the rules first quoted. The secretary, director, or other principal officer is not the party pleading. The party pleading is the company. Hence it follows that as regards every pleading on behalf of a company or corporation the fitness to verify of the person purporting to verify it must be proved by affidavit.
9. This is entirely in accordance with the view taken by Sale, J., in the case cited. In that case there was nothing in the written statement to the effect stated above. The learned judge observed:
The description in the verification of Richard Gardiner, as agent of the defendant company, is itself not verified, nor, if that description alone were verified, could it be assumed that he was a principal officer of the defendant company and able to depose to the facts of the case. That evidence in the case of these written statements must therefore be supplied by affidavit, and on that being done, the written statements may be presented to the registrar for admission.
10. As regards cases where a statement as to the fitness of the person verifying is to be proved in the plaint no distinction can be made between suits to which a corporation is a party and others. With this point I have already dealt. The judgment of Sale, J., does not touch the question of a plaint. If carefully studied it will be found to be based upon waiver by the plaintiff where there has not been strict observance of the rules in the verification of the written statement. This is another matter altogether and not one on which an erroneous practice should have grown up. Waiver can only arise in particular instances and each case in which it is said to arise must be considered independently.
11. The matter of the signature of the plaint depends upon another rule of which the wording is slightly different. I have stated the limited effect of Order 29, Rule 1 which makes no distinction between signing and verifying a pleading on behalf of a corporation. The rule requiring pleadings to be signed is Rule 14, Order 6, Civil Procedure Code, which provides as follows:
Every pleading shall be signed by the party and his pleader (if any) : Provided that where a party pleading is by reason of absence or for other good cause, unable to sign the pleading it may be signed by any person duly authorized by him to sign the same or to sue on his behalf.
12. To all pleadings on behalf of corporations the proviso applies, for the same reason that as regards the verification proof is required of the fitness of the person verifying. Consequently to the extent and in the manner that it is necessary as regards a pleading filed on behalf of a person other than a corporation to establish that the person signing it is duly authorized to do so, it is necessary in the case of a pleading filed on behalf bf a corporation to establish that the person signing it is duly authorized to do so. As to this the practice is well established and there is no geed further to refer to it.
13. Subject to the necessary affidavit being filed, there will be judgment for the amount claimed with costs on scale No. 1 and interest on decree at six per cent.