CHELIKANI LAKSHMIVENKAYAMMA Vs. SRI RAJAH RAO PRADHYUMNA KRISHNA MAHIPATI SURYARAO BAHADUR
HIGH COURT OF ANDHRA PRADESH
SRI RAJAH RAO PRADHYUMNA KRISHNA MAHIPATI SURYARAO BAHADUR
Referred Judgements :-
SARABIJIT PARTAP BAHADUR SAHI V. INDORJIT PARTAP BAHADUR SAHI
RAMACHANDRA MARWARI V. MUDESHWAR SINGH
AGARSINGJI RAI SINGHJI V. BAI NANIBO
PRATAP SINGH SHIV SINGH V. AGARSINGHJI RAJASINGJI
SUBBAYYA V. KRISHNA
RAJA VENKATAPPA NAYANIM VARU V. RAJA THIMMA NAYANIM VARU
ALTAF BEGUM V. BRIJ NARAIN
SHIVAJI GOVIND RAO V. N.N.C.T.C.V.FIRMS
MAHARAJA KESHO PRASAD SINGH V. MADHO PRASAD SINGH
BISHNATH PRASAD SINGH V. CHANDIKA PRASAD KUMARI
NAGESHWAR PRASAD SINGH VS. CHHOTEY LAL
ANIRUDDHA MITRA VS. OFFICIAL RECEIVER, ALIPUR JUDGE S COURT
JOGESWAR NARAIN DEO VS. RAM CHUND DUTT
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Subba Rao, C.J. -
(1.)These are connected appeals filed against the order of the
Estates Abolition Tribunal made in a batch of 38 petitions filed by the appellants
claiming payment of the amounts alleged to be due to them from and out of the
compensation amount deposited by the Government in respect of eight estates.
These 8 estates originally formed part of the estates of Kolanka and Veeravaram.
On 6th January 1887, the then proprietor of the estates Sri Rajah Ravu
Venkata Mahipathi Surya Rao Bahadur executed a will, inter alia, providing for
the payment of annuity of Rs. 3,000 to his maternal uncle Sri Ghelikani
Venkatarayanimgaru and his four brothers. After his death, his adopted son Kumara
Mahipathi, in his turn, executed a will on 15th December, 1897,
whereunder he accepted his father's bequest in favour of the Ghelikani
brothers and specifically provided
for paying them in perpetuity a sum of Rs. 3,000 every year. His widow,
after his death, took the present Rajah of Kolanka in 1932 in adoption. The Cheliiani
brothers divided the annual payment between themselves and each was receiving
Rs. 600 towards his share. Some of the descendants alienated their interest
in favour of third parties. The successive devolutions of the interest of the five
Chelikani brothers in the aforesaid legacy have been summarised by the Tribunal.
(2.)It is not necessary to consider them over again as it is not disputed
that the appellants are the successors-in-interest of the Ghelikani brothers to the said legacy.
Before the Tribunal, it was contended on behalf of the appellants that they were
creditors of the estate and, therefore, they were entitled to be paid on that basis
from and out of the compensation, whereas it was argued on behalf of the
respondents that the appellants were maintenance-holders and, therefore, the Tribunal
should value their interest under section 44 (2) of the Act read with the rules framed
by the Government in that behalf. Alternatively, it was pressed upon the Tribunal
that, whatever might be the character of the future annual payments, so far as the
arrears were concerned, the appellants were in the position of creditors.
(3.)The Tribunal negatived both the contentions advanced on behalf of the appellants and
allowed the claims of the appellants both in regard to the arrears of maintenance
and future payments on the basis they were maintenance-holders.
It is not necessary to notice the other points raised before the Tribunal or the
before them as nothing turns upon them in the appeals.
Learned counsel appearing for the appellants raised before us the following three points :
(1) Under the aforesaid two wills a heritable and transferable annuity
was created in favour of the Chelikani brothers, who had no pre-existing personal
right to be maintained under personal law and, therefore, the amounts payable to
them or their successors in interest were not amounts payable to persons who were
entitled to be maintained out of the estate within the meaning of section 44.
(2) Whatever may be the character of the future payments, so far as the
arrears accrued were concerned, the appellants are in the position of creditors
and, therefore; they will be entitled to be paid only on that basis.
(3) There is an obvious mistake in the calculations made in Annexure IV
to the judgment.
The learned counsel appearing for the respondents, on the other hand, countered
these arguments by stating that, under the will dated 6th January, 1887,
the then proprietor of the Kolanka and Veer'avaram estates made the bequest in
favour of his maternal uncles, the Chelikani brothers, with the express object of
providing for their maintenance and, if once that was conceded, the fact that the
bequest was also heritable or transferable could not make the bequest any the less
one made for maintenance. He proceeded to contend that, if once the bequest
was for maintenance, there could not be any difference in the character of
payments between arrears and future payments.
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