CHAPSEY COOVERJI Vs. JETHABHAI NURSEY
HIGH COURT OF BOMBAY
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Chandavarkar, J. -
(1.) THE parties to this suit belong to the Cutchee Dassa Oswal Bania caste. The plaintiff, Chapsey Cooverji, alleging that he is a trustee of the property of the caste and of certain funds belonging to it, known as the Sadharan and the Derasur and that he is a member of the Managing Committee of the caste, claims the right to inspect and take copies of the whole, or such portions as he thinks necessary, of the books of account, the minute books and documents of the Mahajan, the Managing Committee, the Sub -Committee and the trustees of the caste. The suit is brought against the defendant, Jethabhai Nursey, on the allegation that he, being President of the Managing Committee, has denied the right claimed by the plaintiff and obstructed the latter in the exercise thereof.
(2.) ONE of the grounds on which the defendant in his written statement resisted the claim was that since the institution of the suit the plaintiff had ceased to be a trustee of the caste, having been removed from that office. Issues Nos. 17 to 19 were raised to try that question, but the defendant has given them up for the purposes of this suit and the trial has proceeded on the basis of the plaintiff being still a trustee. Moreover, I have found in Suit No. 109 of 1906 that the plaintiff has not been removed from the office of trustee and that neither the caste nor its Managing Committee has any power to remove him. The plaintiff claims the right of inspection in three capacities, viz. as a trustee of certain funds and institutions of the caste, as a member of its Managing Committee, and, lastly, as a member of the caste. And the books or records, of which he claims inspection, are the account books and minutes of proceedings of the trustees, the minute books and proceedings of the Managing Committee, the Sub -Committee's proceedings and the correspondence file.
(3.) THE first question is, whether the plaintiff occupies the three capacities in which he claims the right. That he is still a trustee is conceded for the purposes of this suit by the defendant and my judgment in Suit No. 109 of 1906, to which the plaintiff and defendant were parties, has disposed of that question in plaintiff's favour.;
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