Decided on July 28,1970

Narayanaswami Desari And Anr. Appellant
The Commissioner Of Hindu Religious And Charitable Endowments Respondents


Kailasam, J. - (1.) THIS appeal is preferred by the two plaintiff's who sued for cancellation of the order of the Commissioner, for Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments, dated 25th July, 1962, holding that the properties constituted religious endowments and calling for the plaintiffs to pay contribution.
(2.) THE case of the plaintiffs is that the properties in dispute were in enjoyment of the plaintiffs, ancestors for over 300 years and they were cultivating the same. According to them their family was looking after the Sanjeevirayar temple at Pidampatty and in recognition of their devoted services the Raja of Pudukkottai made a grant of item 1 lands in Pidampatti Village under Exhibit A -1. A similar grant was also made in Rasipuram and Kumaramangalam Villages. They also claim that in the fisal which was conducted at the time of the inam enquiry and title granted by the Inam Commissioner, the right of the plaintiff's ancestors in the lands was recognised and the grant was construed as a personal grant burdened with some specified services to the extent of Rs. 757. On the basis of an absolute grant of at worst a personal grant burdened with services the contention of the plaintiff is that the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments had no jurisdiction to declare this grant as a religious endowment and call upon them for contribution. The Commissioner for Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments, the defendant, resisted the suit on the ground that the grant was made absolutely to the temple, that the plaintiffs had no title to the properties and that in any event the grant fell under Explanation (1) to Section 6 (17) of the Madras Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Act, and as such it is a religious endowment within the definition. The trial Court framed the following two issues: (1) Whether the suit properties were granted personally to the ancestors of plaintiffs subject to an obligation to spend Rs. 757 for the temple and as such belong absolutely to plaintiffs? (2) Whether the order of the defendant dated 25th July, 1962, in appeal petition 58 of 1961 is liable to be cancelled or modified. On a consideration of the oral and documentary evidence in the case the learned Subordinate Judge found both the issues against the plaintiffs and dismissed the suit.
(3.) IN this appeal the learned Counsel for the appellants took us through the various documents and submitted that this plea that the grant was made absolutely in favour of the plaintiffs' ancestors should be accepted. We shall deal with the various documents.;

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