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(Bohra) Hukum Singh vs Surajpal Singh And Anr.

High Court Of Judicature at Allahabad|31 January, 1929


1. The learned Judge of Agra, Mr. Bennet, amended a judgment and decree of his predecessor-in-office Mr. Herchenroder on the ground of an accidental slip. A decree-holder failed in the execution Court to obtain sale of certain trees and materials of a house of a judgment-debtor in the execution Court. The judgment-debtor was a tenant and the trees grew on his holding and he was a licensee of the house. The decree-holder thereupon brought a declaratory suit that the trees and the materials of the house were saleable in execution of his decree. The suit was decreed with respect to both the trees and the materials by the trial Court of the Munsif of Agra. An appeal was taken to the Court of the District Judge and Mr. Herchenroder, Additional District Judge, decided it. In the operative part of the order he appears to have made the mistake of transposing the words "materials of the house" and "trees." His judgment shows that he held the materials of the house liable to sale but not the trees and so his intention was to decree the suit as to materials and dismiss as to trees. By some slip the words were transposed. Mr. Herchenroder left the district and there was no successor to him as Additional District Judge. The successor to the office was Mr. Bennet, the District Judge. A petition was presented to Mr. Bennet by the defendants zamindars under Section 152, Civil P.C., desiring both the judgment and the decree to be amended for reasons already stated by me. A notice was issued to the plaintiff-decree-holder, Hukum Singh. He made no appearance and the judgment and the decree were corrected as desired by the defendant zamindars.
2. It is argued here that Mr. Bennet had no jurisdiction to make the correction. In my opinion he had. I remember a second appeal in Oudh where under similar circumstances I corrected both the judgment and the decree of a learned brother of mine, who had by a slip written the word decreed in place of dismissed. My learned brother had then left the Court of the Judicial Commissioner and was in England as was the case here. The provisions of Section 152 are wider than the provisions of Section 206 of the Code of 1882. The provisions of Section 206 gave the Court power only to amend the decree if it was found to be at variance with the judgment. Under the provisions of that section, no power was given to the Court to correct any accidental slip in the judgment. The provisions of Section 152 are very wide and give power to the Court not only to correct clerical or arithmetical mistakes in judgments, decrees or orders, but also errors arising therein from any accidental slip or omission. This may be done at any time by the Court, even without any application by any of the parties. The aim of the present Code of Civil Procedure is to give a Court the widest powers possible to pass orders for the ends of justice at any time and in any situation. Reference as to rulings passed prior to 1908 can there fore be of no help. The rulings quoted by learned Counsel for the applicant were: Surta v. Ganga [1885] 7 All. 411 with the Full Bench judgment in Surta v. Ganga [1885] 7 A11.875 and Sahab Din v. Siraj-ud-din [1913] 47 P.R. 1913. These rulings are no longer applicable, A ruling of the Madras High Court in the case of Lakshman Iyengar v, Narayana Iyengar (A.I.R. 1924 Mad. 225) was quoted. The matter was decided there on a very technical ground that the application was only for the amendment of the decree and not for the amendment of the judgment, and the decree, when it agreed with the judgment, could not be corrected under Section 152. The Court, however, gave the indulgence of having the same application treated as an application for review. Obviously the Court's attention was not drawn to a simpler method of treating the application as an application for the correction of the judgment as well as for the correction of the decree. I have read the judgment of Mr. Herchenroder and agree with Mr. Bennet that Mr Herchenroder has made a slip and the correction was necessary for the ends of justice. This application is dismissed with costs.
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(Bohra) Hukum Singh vs Surajpal Singh And Anr.


High Court Of Judicature at Allahabad

31 January, 1929