Decided on November 07,1967

KUNJAYI Respondents


- (1.) For one year, the respondent plaintiff was in occupation of some land belonging to the appellant defendant, the State Government, having bought in auction the right to raise crops on that land for that year. Whether the transaction amounts to a lease, or, as seems to have been conceded by the appellant in the courts below, is only a licence, I think that the respondent was liable to pay the cesses collected from him for the year he was in occupation under the provisions of the Madras District Boards Act, 1920 and the Madras Elementary Education Act, 1920 but, for the repayment of which, the courts below have concurred in granting him a decree.
(2.) S.74B of the Madras District Boards Act says that, "in every district, a land cess being a tax on the annual rent value of lands shall be levied in accordance with the provisions hereinafter contained in this Act." S.78 says: "The land cess shall be levied on the annual rent value of all occupied lands on whatever tenure held and shall consist of a tax of two annas in the rupee of the annual rent value of all such lands in the district." S.79 says: "The annual rent value shall, for the purposes of S.78, be calculated in the following manner: (1) In the case of lands held direct from Government on ryotwari tenure or on lease or licence and also, in the ease of lands situated in the district of Malabar, on whatever tenure held, the assessment, lease amount, royalty or other sum payable to Government for the lands together with any water rate which may be payable for their irrigation shall be taken to be the annual rent value x x x". And by S.88, the liability to pay the land cess is cast on every landholder and sub landholder.
(3.) S.34(2) of the Madras Elementary Education Act only authorises the imposition of an additional tax under among other heads, the head of land cess, and the respondent's liability to pay this additional tax is entirely dependent on his liability to pay the land cess under the Madras District Boards Act.;

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