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P.S.PANDIA versus ANNAI VELANGANNI FILMS2. MRS.SAVITHRI DEVARAJ

High Court of Madras

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P.S.Pandia v. Annai Velanganni Films2. Mrs.Savithri Devaraj - C.R.P.(P.D.) No. 4190 OF 2001 AND C.R.P.(PD) No. 4191 of 2001 [2002] RD-TN 284 (24 April 2002)



IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT MADRAS

DATED: 24/04/2002

CORAM:

THE HONOURABLE MR.JUSTICE P.D.DINAKARAN C.R.P.(P.D.) No. 4190 OF 2001 AND C.R.P.(PD) No. 4191 of 2001 and

C.M.P.No.22745 of 2001

P.S.Pandian .. Petitioner in both revisions

versus

1. Annai Velanganni Films

rep. by its Partner

Mrs.Savithri Devaraj

9, Krishna Street, T.Nagar

Chennai-600 017.

2. Mrs.Savithri Devaraj .. Respondents-1 & 2 in both revision -----

Revisions against the orders even dated 13.11.2001 in I.A.Nos.16 208 of 2001 and 16810 of 2001 respectively in O.S.No.4137 of 1996 on the file of the learned IV Assistant Judge, City Civil C -----

For petitioner : Mr.S.V.Jayaraman Senior Advocate For respondents : No appearance

----

:ORDER



Heard Mr.S.V.Jayaraman, learned senior counsel for the revision petitioner. No representation on behalf of the respondents.

2. The revision petitioner is the plaintiff in O.S.No. 4137 of 1996, filed for directing the respondents/defendants jointly and severally to pay the revision petitioner/ plaintiff a sum of Rs.8,74,110/- together with interest at 12 per annum on Rs.6,43,360/- from the date of plaint till the date of realisation and for costs, based on six promissory notes even dated 1.9.1983 for Rs.50,000/- each.

3. The suit was resisted by the respondents/defendants, denying the very execution of the promissory notes, inter alia contending that no consideration was passed on the suit promissory notes.

4. To Substantiate their contention, the revision petitioner/ plaintiff examined himself as P.W.2. Since in the cross-examination the signatures of the respondents/ defendants were strongly disputed, the revision petitioner/ plaintiff, on the very next day of the closing of cross-examination, filed I.A.No.16208 of 2001 for production of all the account books, which are in the custody of the respondents/ defendants, and after a few days, filed I.A.No.10810 of 2001 to reopen the case and re-examine P.W.1. But the same was objected to by the respondents/ defendants on the ground that both these steps are wilful abuse of the process of the Court, as the revision petitioner/plaintiff has failed to take steps at an appropriate time, even though he is said to have had knowledge of the transaction.

4. Accepting the objections raised by the respondents/ defendants, the learned IV Assistant Judge, City Civil Court, Chennai, by separate orders even dated 13.11.2001 in I.A.Nos.16208 of 2001 and 16810 of 2 001, dismissed both the applications. Hence the above revision.

5. Mr.S.V.Jayaraman, learned senior counsel appearing on behalf of the revision petitioner/plaintiff, contends that the phrase "good cause", used in Order XIII Rule 2, C.P.C., only means sufficient cause. In other words, it is suffice for the party who approaches the Court seeking permission for production of the document under Order XIII Rule 2, C.P.C., to satisfy the Court with regard to his bona fide for production of the document at a subsequent stage.

6. It is further contended by the learned senior counsel that the powers conferred under Order XIII Rule 2, C.P.C., should be exercised liberally. Similarly, it is contended that the refusal to recall the witnesses on an application filed under Order XVIII Rule 17, C.P.C., should also be construed liberally, to meet the ends of justice.

7. No representation on behalf of the respondents/ defendants.

8. In this regard, I am obliged to refer Order XIII Rule 2, C.P.C., which deals with the powers of the Court in granting permission with regard to the production of documents at a subsequent stage of the proceedings, as well as Order XVIII Rule 17, C.P.C., which deals with the power of the Court, to recall and examine the witnesses: Order XIII Rule 2, C.P.C.: Effect of non-production of documents.--

(1) No documentary evidence in the possession or power of any party which should have been but has not been produced in accordance with the requirements of Rule 1 shall be received at any subsequent stage of the proceedings unless good cause is shown to the satisfaction of the Court for the non-production thereof; and the Court receiving any such evidence shall record the reasons for so doing.

(2) Noting in sub-rule (1) shall apply to documents,-- (a) produced for the cross-examination of the witnesses of the other party, or

(b) handed over to a witness merely to refresh his memory. Order XVIII Rule 17, C.P.C.: Court may recall and examine witness.-- The Court may at any stage of a suit recall any witness who has been examined and may (subject to the law of evidence for the time being in force) put such questions to him as the Court thinks fit.

9. The phrase "good cause" employed under Order XIII Rule 2, C. P.C., no doubt, requires adequate, sound and genuine reasons, but it depends upon the facts and circumstances of the individual case, as the good cause or sufficient cause, as the case may be, is intended only to ensure the bona fide of the parties who approach the Court for production of the documents at a subsequent stage. Therefore, it is suffice for the Court to find out whether the claim of a person who approaches the Court for production of the documents at a subsequent stage, lacks bona fide or suffers from mala fide. In either case, the test to be adopted is whether the documents relied upon by the party are required to meet the ends of justice.

10. Therefore, I am of the considered opinion that the Court, while exercising the power conferred under Order XIII Rule 2, C.P.C., should exercise the same liberally, to meet the ends of justice. Similarly the same yardstick is equally applicable while exercising the power conferred under Order XVIII Rule 17, C.P.C., because, the said Rule provides for examination of witness only to meet the ends of justice, by enabling the authorities to substantiate their claim. Hence, both the provisions cannot be interpreted rigidly.

11. Applying the above principles to the facts and circumstances of the present case, I am of the considered opinion that by directing the production of all the account books, which are in the custody of the respondents/ defendants, the respondents/defendants would not, in any way, be prejudiced. On the other hand, the denial of such permission would deprive the right of the revision petitioner/plaintiff to substantiate his case. 11. Hence, applying a liberal interpretation, the orders of the learned IV Assistant Judge, City Civil Court, Chennai, even dated 13.11.2 001 in I.A.Nos.16208 of 2001 and 16810 of 2001 respectively are set aside, and consequently, the both the applications are allowed. The revisions are allowed and both the I.As. are ordered accordingly, with a direction to the learned IV Assistant Judge, City Civil Court, Chennai, to expedite the trial and pass appropriate orders within 90 days from the date of receipt of a copy of this order. No costs. Consequently, C.M.P.No.22745 of 2001 is closed. Index: Yes

Internet: Yes 24.04.2002 P.D.DINAKARAN,J To: The Registrar, City Civil Court, Madras. ksv P.D.DINAKARAN,J. 


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Reproduced in accordance with s52(q) of the Copyright Act 1957 (India) from judis.nic.in, indiacode.nic.in and other Indian High Court Websites

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