Decided on November 24,1953



Satyanarayana Rao J. - (1.) Defendants 1 and 2 preferred this appeal against the decision of the Subordinate Judge of Palghat granting a decree against them for arrears of rent with a charge on the suit properties. At the time of arguments of the appeal, however, the first appellant (first defendant) alone appeared.
(2.) The plaintiff sued to recover Rs. 5679-7-0 as arrears of rent due to him from the defendants and also prayed for sale of the tenancy rights of the defendants to discharge the said arrears. The properties in suit originally belonged in jenm to the Vadaseri tarwad. The plaintiff, it is now common ground though there was dispute in the trial court, represents the interest of the landlord in the properties. The case for the plaintiff was that on 9-3-1853 under a document, copy of which is marked as Ex. A. 6, 'saswatham' tenure was created in favour of one Karatti Chinnan Goundan, with a stipulation that he should pay rent at the rate of 231 paras of paddy per year. Defendants 1 and 2 by subsequent devolutions have now become the owners of the tenancy right. It is unnecessary to go into the details of the devolutions of the property under which ultimately defendants 1 and 2 became the tenants. The suit was resisted on all possible grounds in the trial Court. Even the right of the plaintiff to sue was contested. But all those pleas are now out of the case. The learned subordinate Judge held that the plaintiff was the present landlord of the suit properties and was entitled to sue for rent, and that under the document Ex. A. 6, which he held was admissible, the tenants were bound to pay rent at the rate of 231 paras of paddy per year; he granted a decree for an amount which represents the market value of the paddy rent for a period of 12 years, but he disallowed interest on the same from the dates from which the arrears had accrued due. He also gave a charge on the suit properties for the arrears of rent due. There is an appeal by the defendants and a Memorandum of cross objections by the plaintiff.
(3.) In the appeal it was argued that the basis of the finding of the learned Subordinate Judge regarding the rate of rent was the document Ex. A. 6, which, according to the appellant's contention, should not have been admitted in evidence. If the document is admissible, it is undoubted that the defendants held the land on 'saswatham' tenure subject to a liability to pay rent at the rate of 231 paras of paddy. Exhibit A. 6 purports to be a copy of the original made in a book which contains copies of other documents. The copy, it is in evidence, was made by P. W. 1, who was the head-clerk and cashier of the Vadaseri tarwad during the years 1921 to 1939. The plaintiff attempted to secure the original by summoning the present Karnavan of the Vadaseri tarwad but he was unsuccessful. The learned trial Judge, in view of the evidence of P. W. 1 who prepared the copy and compared it with the original, admitted in evidence the copy Ex. A. 6. P. W. 1 gave evidence in a straightforward manner and the learned trial Judge who had the advantage of seeing the witness in the witness box accepted the testimony as true. We see no reason to differ from his conclusion. It therefore follows that the plaintiff is entitled to the contract rate of rent of 231 paras of paddy rent as provided in Ex. A. 6.;

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