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A.H. Ghaznavi and Co. Vs. Budge-budge Jute Mills - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
CourtKolkata
Decided On
Judge
Reported inAIR1914Cal181,25Ind.Cas.955
AppellantA.H. Ghaznavi and Co.
RespondentBudge-budge Jute Mills
Excerpt:
arbitration - award made against firm, whether bad--contention on conjectural grounds, value of--submission to arbitration--application to set aside award, grounds of. - .....chamber of commerce, which was filed on the 17th april 1914, be set aside and that the budge-budge jute mills, respondents, be restrained from enforcing the same. the matter arose upon a contract, 'dated the 22nd july 1913. the petitioner sold 300 bales of jute rejections as sample lot, shipment at once. there was an option provided in these terms : the buyers have the option of taking a further lot of 1,700 bales on approval of these lots and at the same rate.' the contract had an arbitration clause in these terms: any dispute arising in this contract shall be referred to the arbitration of the, bengal chamber of commerce, whose decision shall be accepted as final and binding on both the parties.' the petitioner did not deliver the jute under the contract. messrs. andrew yule and co.,.....
Judgment:

Chaudhuri, J.

1. This is an application by Ghaznavi and Co. that an award purporting to have been made by the Bengal Chamber of Commerce, which was filed on the 17th April 1914, be set aside and that the Budge-Budge Jute Mills, respondents, be restrained from enforcing the same. The matter arose upon a contract, 'dated the 22nd July 1913. The petitioner sold 300 bales of jute rejections as sample lot, shipment at once. There was an option provided in these terms : The buyers have the option of taking a further lot of 1,700 bales on approval of these lots and at the same rate.' The contract had an arbitration clause in these terms: Any dispute arising in this contract shall be referred to the arbitration of the, Bengal Chamber of Commerce, whose decision shall be accepted as final and binding on both the parties.' The petitioner did not deliver the jute under the contract. Messrs. Andrew Yule and Co., as agents of the Budge-Budge Jute Mills, wrote to the Registrar of what was known as the tribunal of the Bengal Chamber of Commerce, dated the 10th February 1914, and that letter fully set out their case. It appears from it that repeated letters were written by the Mills to the petitioners to which no reply was sent. Ultimately the petitioners asked for extension of time and it was granted, the last extension being up to the 7th of October. In spite of such extension the delivery was not given. The Mills thereupon presented the difference bills. The payment was refused and the matter was referred to the Bengal Chamber of Commerce. The buyers had tendered to the petitioners Rs. 14,000, which was the value of the two thousand bales, on the 27th of September. One of the disputes between the parties apparently was that the buyers were not entitled to call for delivery of the 1,700 bales. It was suggested by the petitioners that it was conditional upon the approval of the sample lot and the sample lot not having been approved, the Budge-Budge Jute Mills were not entitled to ask for delivery of that lot. The petitioners sent in their case to the registrar of the tribunal on the 8th March 1914. Their contentions were firstly in respect of the 1,700 bales, they asserting that the Budge-Budge Jute Mills had no right to call upon them to deliver the 1,700 bales. They also contended that the market rate ought to be the rate of the 3rd October, namely, the last date of extension. They also said that the evidence ought to be given by the Mills that they had purchased against the petitioners. The award was made and a copy of it was sent to the petitioners and it was filed on the 17th of April 1914. The application before me was made on the 24th April 1914 when a Rule nisi was granted. The petitioners objected to the award on these grounds, namely, (l) that the award was perverse as being beyond the scheme of the reference in respect of the additional lot of the 1,700 bales; (2) that the submission was insufficiently stamped; 00 that the names of the arbitrators were not disclosed and, therefore, the petitioners were unable to ascertain if the arbitrators had acted fraudulently or in collusion with the other side, or if they were otherwise unfit to conduct the arbitration; (4) that no umpire was appointed prior to the arbitrators proceeding with the reference; (5) that no time or place was fixed for the hearing; (6) that no notice of the hearing was given; and lastly (7) that the award was made against the name of the firm, without ascertaining who were the parties liable. On those facts the award was bad. As regards the objections Nos. 2 and 7 I need not deal with them as they were not argued and in fact objection No. 2 was expressly withdrawn. As regards the last objection about the award being against the firm, the Code now provides that suits can be instituted against a firm in the firm's name and decrees may be granted against a firm in the firm's name. The first ground, I think, is untenable. As regards the third ground I am of opinion that it is not of much value. The petitioners had plenty of opportunity of ascertaining as to what the arbitrators did and had opportunity of knowing their names when the award was filed in Court and although the award was filed on the 17th and they made the application on the 24th, they did not in their petition state that there were any grounds for believing that the arbitrators had 'in any way acted fraudulently, or that they believed that the arbitrators had acted fraudulently or that there were any reasons for suspecting -, that they had acted improperly. I am not prepared to attach any value to a contention of that character on purely conjectural grounds. The fourth ground does not seem to me to be of much value. As regards the fifth and sixth grounds I have to observe that the petitioners did not state anywhere that they did not know the rules of the Chamber. Further, there is nothing before me to show that there rules of the Chamber have not been complied with. I do not think that a person can be allowed to see the effect of an award and then come to Court to set it aside. An application of this character should not be encouraged.

2. I accordingly dismiss the application with costs.


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