Decided on August 10,1984

Association Of Radha Swami Dera Appellant
PRATAP SINGH Respondents

Cited Judgements :-



S.S.BYAS, J. - (1.)THIS is a plaintiff's appeal against the order of the learned Additional District Judge, Ganganagar dated May 4, 1972 by which the appellant's plaint was rejected under Order 7 Rule 11(d) of the Civil Procedure Code on the ground that it was time barred.
(2.)THE plaintiff instituted a suit for the declaration and possession against the three defendants in the court of the District Judge, Ganganagar on April 12, 1972. As per averments made in the plaint, one Baba Bagga Singh of Tarantaron (Punjab) founded an institution for the propagation of the tenets and preaching of Radhaswami faith at Taran Taran. It came to be known as 'Dera Baba Baggasighji Taran Taran.' Baba Baggasingh initiated many disciples to this Order and acquired vast movable and immovable properties for the development and progress of his order. Baba Bagga bingh, in his life time, nominated Baba Dewasingh (who was his principal disciple) as his successor to the Dera Baba Baggasioghji On the death of Baba Baggasioghji, Baba Dewasingh succeeded to Baba Bagga singhji as his successor. Baba Dewasingh also acquired huge movable and immovable properties for the purpose of advancement and development of Radhasawami faith of Dfra Baba Baggasioghji Taran Taran. In 1960, Biba Dewasingh formed an Association ofSatsangies with him as its Patron This Association was named as 'Association of Radhaswami Dera Baba Baggasioghji Taran Taran' with the object of propagation of the traditions and tenets of Radhaswami Dera Baba Baggasinghji Taran Taran and other allied objects mentioned in the Memorandum of Association annexed with the plaint. This Association was got registered in Panjab under the Societies Registration Act, 1960. The rules and regulations of the Association made a provision for constituting a governing body named as Executive Committee, Dera Radha Swami Baba Baggasinghji Tarantaran. This Executive Committee consisted of Kundansingh as Chairman, Kashmirsingh as Secretary, Ranaq Singh as Accountant M -mber, Bootasingh as Member, and Ram Lal as Joint Secretary The rules and regulations also made provisions about the management of the property which came or was to come to vest in the society. According to these provisions, the properties belonging to the society shall vest in the Executive Committee and the society, through its Executive Committee shall manage the properties of the society. There are also provisions in the rules and regulations for the removal of the Chairman, Secretary and other office bearers The rules and regulations also made a provision for the Patron of the society and Baba Dewasingh was the first Patron A right WHS granted to the patron to nominate a person to succeed him as patron, ff no such successor is nominated in writing by the Sant Satguru (Patron), a provision was made that the remaining members of the society would elect a person as its patron who has been duly initiated by a Sant Satguru. The patron so elected would be the Head of the Dera Radhaswami Baba Baggasinghji Taran Taran and he would be deemed to be the successor of the previous Sant Satguru. The Patron would be the ex -officio Chairman of the society In the event of there being no patron for the time being, his powers and functions are to vest in the Chairman of the Committee till the patron is appointed in accordance with the provisions of rules and regulations. But the Chairman of the Executive Committee, in no case, would be deemed to be the Sant Satguru. He is to, have the right and functions of a patron only. On December 15, 1960, Baba Dewasingh made a declaration of Trust for the proper management of the, property of the Dera Baba Baggasingbji situate in Punjab and Rajastban and got this Trurt registered. Baba Dewasingh appointed himself as the Sole Trustee under the Trust. As a sole trustee and in exercise of the rights conferred on him under the Trust, he transferred properties of Dera Baba Baggasinghji to the plaintiff Association. As such the properties of Dere Baba Baggasinghji came to vest, in the Executive Committee of the Society. On December 22, 1960, Baba Dewasingh passed away. He did not nominate anybody as his successor. As such, according to the rules and regulations of the society, the patron was to be elected by the remaining members of the society. Defencant Partapsingh was never elected as patron of the society by the members of the society. Defendant Partapsingh is also not qualified to be nominated or elected as Head of the Dera Baba Baggasing. Reasons were stated in para 9 of the plaint as how. he was not qualified, defendant Partap Singh some where in IV 62 made unlawful possession on Dera Baba Bagga Singhji and the properties of the Dera detailed out in Schedule 1 annexed with the plaint. He also started declaring himself as the, Head of the Dera and styled himself as Sant Satguru and patron of the society. With the help of some amti -social elements, he drove all the members of the society and the Executive Committee out of the Dera. In December 1966, one Gurunam Singh and some other persons jointly filed a civil suit in the Court of Senior Civil Judge, Ganganagar against the plaintiff association and defendant Partapsingh alleging therein that Partapsingh was not a Sant Satguru. Defendant. Partapsingh resisted the suit for sometime as patron and chairman of the plaintiff association but subsequently withdrew himself from that suit with the result that the suit was decreed ex -parte on December 2, 1969. In execution of that decree, the learned Additional District Judge, Ganganagar appointed one Jugrajsingh, Advocate as receiver of the properties of the Dera which were in the hands of defendants No. 1. The receiver took over the possession of these properties of the Dera. The matter travelled to this court on an appeal filed by defendant Partapsingh. The appeal was allowed on the short ground that the suit was not maintainable as the provisions of Section 92 of the Civil Procedure Code were not complied with. The ex -parte judgment and decree were consequently set -aside While dismissing the appeal, this Court observed:
It appears to us that Dera has a considerable income on account of immovable property including the agricultural land and considerable portion of income is spent over the maintenance of Dera and for feeding and locking after the Satsangis. It would, therefore, be proper in the circumstances of this case and in view of willingness expressed by the learned Counsel for the non -petitioner, to binn down the non -petitioner, for the proper management of the properties of this institution. They shall keep correct and regular account of the income and expenditure of the Dera and submit the same in the court of Additional District Judge, Sri Ganganagar at the end of every third month after they have taken over the chaige of the properties. They would further give securities in a sum of Rs. 1,00,000/ - to the effect that they shall not in any way alienate, waste or misuse the properties belonging to the Dera. The possession of the properties shall not be delivered to them unless security in the terms mentioned above is furnished to the satisfaction of the Additional District Judge, Ganganagar.

That matter is now pending in special appeal before the Supreme Court. It was alleged that in that civil suit the question whether defendant Partapsingh was really the patron and chairman of the plaintiff association, was not gone into by this court. In view of the above observation of this Court, Kundansingh (through whom the present suit has been filed by the association; moved an application on March 20, 1972 that the properties of Dera be got delivered to him from the receiver. That application was dismissed by the learned Additional District Judge on the ground that it was not necessary to consider as who was the then chairman of the association. Again on March 20, 1972 an application was moved by Kundansingh of the similar defendants for possession of the Dera properties. This application was opposed by defendant Partapsingh totally on a false ground that Kundansingh had resigned from the Chairmanship of the plaintiff association. This application was also dismissed by the learned Additional District Judge by his order dated April 7, 1972 with observations that 'if Kundansingh feels himself aggrieved in regard to his status as president, he may resort to such remedy which may be available to him in law. His status as such cannot be determined in these proceedings.'

(3.)IT was further alleged that in l -
(1) declaration that Kundansingh is the Chairman of the Executive Committee and the other persons mentioned in para 4 of the plaint are its other office bearers; (2) declaration that defendants No. 1, 2 and 3 are usurpers and have no right of whatsoever nature to possess, manage and control the properties in dispute belonging to the plaintiff association; (3) that in consequence of the above declaration, possession of -the properties mentioned in Schedule 1 be delivered to the plaintiff association and (4) injunction restraining defendants No. 1 and 2 from taking possession of the properties as Chairman of the association.

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