Naunihal Kishan & Ors Vs. R. S.
Ch. Pratap Singh & ANR  INSC 57 (13 March 1963)
13/03/1963 AYYANGAR, N. RAJAGOPALA AYYANGAR,
N. RAJAGOPALA DAS, S.K.
CITATION: 1964 AIR 1379 1964 SCR (2) 293
mortgage- Whether mortgagor a debtor-Scaling down of mortgage debt- Whether
only in a suit for redemption of mortgageTribunal's jurisdiction-" Value
of the lands"-How to be com- puted--Whether in terms of market value alone-Whether
in terms of comparable Standard acres-Displaced Persons (Debts Adjustments)
Act, 1951 (LXX of 1951) ss. 2 (6), 2 (9), 4, 5, 16, 29.
Both the appellants as well as the
respondents originally belonged to that part of Punjab which is now in Pakistan.
In 1933 respondent No. 2 effected an
usufructuary mortgage of a certain land to the father of appellants Nos. 1 to 3
and to the 4th appellant's father to secure a sum of Rs.
39,000/-. Apart from the provisions for the
payment of interest the mortgage deed also fixed a term of 10 years beyond
which alone the mortgagee could sue for the recovery of the mortgage money.
Four years after the execution of the mortgage deed the mortgagor sold a major
portion of the property to one Guranditta Ram. Out of the consideration for
this sale a sum of Rs. 26,500/- was left with the transferee to be paid in
discharge of the mortgage. This sum was not paid to the mortgagee and thus the
entire mortgage amount remained outstanding. On the partition of the country in
1947 both the mortgagor as well as the mortgagee moved into India and they were
"displaced persons". The mortgagor was as displaced person allotted
agricultural land in India on the basis of his original holding in Pakistan.
The appellants as the mortgagees entitled to
possession of the lands were put in possession of this land.
The respondents applied under s. 5 of the Displaced
Persons (Debts Adjustment) Act, 1951, to get the mortgage debts adjusted
according to the provisions of s. 16 of the Act.
Certain objections raised by the appellants
to this application were overruled and the mortgage debt was scaled down. An
appeal was preferred to the Punjab High Court and the Single judge who heard
the appear dismissed it. A Letters Patent Appeal preferred by the appellants
was dismissed in limine, 294 and a certificate of fitness was refused. The
present appeal is by way of special leave granted by this Court.
The first contention raised before this Court
was that the first respondent was not a "debtor" within the meaning
of s. 2 (6) of the Act because there was no contractual relation- ship of
debtor and creditor between him and the displaced creditor i. e. the
appellants. The next contention was that the liability under a mortgage debt
could be scaled down and adjusted under the Act only in a suit for redemption
filed by the creditor and that it was incompetent for a debtor to invoke the
jurisdiction of the tribunal to effect the scaling down by an application under
s. 5. Finally it was argued that under the proviso to s. 16 (4) of the Act the
reduction of the debt has to be in the game proportion as "the value of
the lands" allotted to the creditor in India bears to the "value of
the lands" left by him in Pakistan and "value" according to the
appellant meant market value.
Held, that having regard to the terms of s.
16 (4) the fact that the security was by way of usufructuary mortgage and the
debtor had the right to redeem were sufficient to enable the beneficient
provisions of the section being attracted.
Apart even from the terms of s. 16 (4) the
liability under the mortgage in favour of the appellant would fall within the definition
of s. 2 (6). Even a usufructuary mortgage, whatever its nature is within the
definition of debt' under s. 16 and it is wholly immaterial whether or not the
creditor is entitled to proceed personally against the debtor and recover the
amount of the mortgage.
Lachhman Singh v. Natha Singh and Ors., 1. L.
R. 1941 Lah.
71, Manubhai Mahijibhai Patel v. Trikamlal
Laxmidas, I. L. R. 1958 Bom. 1429, Lahori Lal v. Kasturi Lal (1956) 58 P. L. R.
331, Rajkumari Kaushalya Devi v. Bawa Pritam Singh,  3 S. C. R. 570.
Section 5 (1) of the Act enables a debtor to
make an application to the tribunal for the adjustment of his debts.
The amount due on or secured by a mortgage is
a "debt" within the meaning of s. 5 to settle which, an application
could be filed and the debt being a secured debt as contemplated by s. 16 (4)
the applicants were entitled to have an adjustment in terms of that specified
in the proviso to that section.
Under the relevant rules the rehabilitation
authorities arc directed to take into account the income yield of the two sets
of land and thus the "value" of the land left behind in Pakistan 295
is reflected in ascertaining the "standard acres". The nature of the
land left behind was taken into account and numerical factors were prescribed
based on these criteria for ascertaining the equivalent of those lands in
When the proviso to s. 16 (1) spoke of value'
it must have bad in contemplation the value as determined by the procedure for
fixing the same under the relevant rules.
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION : Civil Appeal
No. 594 of 1960.
Appeal by special leave from the judgment and
order dated March 6, 1958, of the Punjab High Court in Letters Patent Appeal
No. 6 of 1958.
K.L. Gosain, C. L. Sareen and R. L. Kohli,
for the appellants.
Roop Chand and Navnit Lal, for respondent No.
Naunit Lal, for respondent No. 2.
1963. March, 13. The judgment of the Court
was delivered by AYYANGAR J.-The facts necessary to appreciate the points
involved in this appeal by special leave against the judgment of the High Court
of Punjab are briefly these. By a registered deed of mortgage dated March 6,
1933 Sham Singh who is respondent No. 2 before us effected an usufructuary
mortgage of land measuring 7530 Kanals and 19 Marlas situate in village
Mohanpur in the District of Multan (now in Pakistan) to the father of
appellants 1 to 3 and to Topan Das--the father of the 4th appellant. The sum
secured by the mortgage was Rs. 30,000/-. The stipulation in the mortgage was
that the income derived from the properties transferred to the possession of
the mortgagees was to be treated as interest on Rs. 10,000/- out of the
principal sum and that the balance of Rs. 20,000/- was to carry a sum of 296
Rs. 1,650/- per annum as interest. The deed further fixed a term of 10 years
beyond which the mortgagee could sue for the recovery of the mortgage-money.
Subsequent to the deed of mortgage, about 4 years thereafter, the
mortgagor-Sham Singh sold a major portion of the mortgaged property consisting
of about 6,568 Kanals of land to Guranditta Ram and others. Out of' the
consideration for this sale a sum of Rs. 26,500/- was left with the transferee
the same being directed to be paid in discharge of the mortgage. The Sale to
Guranditta Ram was subject to a preemption claim and pre- emptor exercised his
rights to obtain that relief. Narain Singh-father of Partap Singh, the 1st
respondent-was the preemptor and in a suit filed by him he obtained on February
16, 1940 a decree for sale in his favour by virtue of his right of preemption
and in pursuance of this decree he obtained symbolical possession of the land,
the mortagees still containing to retain the actual possession of the land. The
sum of Rs. 26,500/-retained with the vendee under the sale by Sham Singh was
not paid over to the mortgagee and thus the entire amount of the mortgage-money
While things were in this state, the country
was partitioned in 1947 and both the mortgagor as well as the mortgagees moved
into India and they were "displaced persons" . The owners of the
property, viz., the original mortgagor- respondent No.2 Sham Singh and the
pre-emptor-vendee were, as displaced persons, allotted agricultural land in
India on the basis of their original holdings in Pakistan in pursuance of the
relevant rules under the Displaced Persons (Compensation and Rehabilitation)
Rules. The appellants as the mortgagees entitled to possession of the lands
were in June-July 1950, under these rules put in possession of the properties
allotted to both Sham Singh-the original mortgagor as well as of Pratap
Singh-the legal representative 297 of the deceased pre-emptor (respondent No.
1). The total extent of land which the respondent had been put in possession
was 51 standard acres and 9 units of land made up of 37.4 standard acres as
being the property belonging to the pre-emptorvendee (respondent No. 1) and
14.5 standard acres by virtue of the property allottable to Sham Singh the
original mortgagor (respondent No. 2).
The Union Legislature enacted in November,
1951 the Displaced Persons (Debts Adjustment) Act, 1951 (Act LXX of 1951) which
we shall hereafter refer to as the Act, being an Act to make provisions for the
adjustment and settlement of debts due by displaced persons. Section 5 of the
Act enabled an application to be made by a "'displaced debtor" for
the adjustment of his debts to a Tribunal which was defined as meaning "a
civil court having authority to exercise jurisdiction under the Act" for
the adjustment of the debts due by the applicant. Section 16 made provision for
the manner in which debts secured on immovable property due by displaced
debtors were to be reduced, settled and ad- justed. Sham Singh as well as
Pratap Singh made separate applications under s. 5 of the Act seeking to obtain
the benefit of the settlement and adjustment provision contained in its s. 16.
The two applications were, in view of their having reference to the same
mortgage debt, consolidated and were heard to ether by the Senior Sub-judge,
Karnal who was the relevant Tribunal under the Act. Several objections were
raised by the mortgagee-appellants to these applications but they were
overruled and the mortgage debt was scaled down under s. 16 and other relevant
statutory provisions which were applicable in the manner we shall detail later.
An appeal was preferred from this decision to the High Court of Punjab but the
same was dismissed by the learned Single judge. A further appeal under the
Letters Patent to a Bench of the High Court was 298 dismissed in limine and a
certificate of fitness being refused, the appellants applied to this Court for
special leave and this being granted, the appeal is now before us.
Before we set out the grounds which have been
urged before us in support of the appeal it is perhaps convenient that we
extract the material portions of some of the provisions of the Act on whose
construction the appeal turns. The Act, as we stated, earlier, was enacted
inter alia, for making provision for adjustment and settlement of debts due by
displaced persons. A "'displaced debtor" is defined as a displaced
person from whom a debt is due or is being claimed (s. 2 (9) ). We might add
that it is common ground that both the appellant and the respondents are
"displaced persons" as defined in the Act. The word ,debt' used in s.
2 (9) is defined in s. 2 (6) thus :
"2. (6). 'debt' means any pecuniary
liability, whether payable presently or in future; or under a decree or order
of civil or revenue court or otherwise, or whether ascertained or to be
ascertained Section 5 is the first of the sections in Chapter II which is
headed 'Debt Adjustment Proceedings'. It reads :
"5. (1) At any time within one year
after the date on which this Act comes into force in any local area, a
displaced debtor may make an application for the adjustment of his debts to the
Tribunal within the local limits of whose jurisdiction he actually and
voluntarily resides, or carries on business or personally works for gain
........... " Sub-section (2) and (3) of this section specify what the application
under sub-s. (1) should contain but 299 these need not detain us. The next
section which is relevant, having regard to the points raised before us, is s.
16 which reads :
"16 (1) Where a debt incurred by a
displaced person is secured by a mortgage, charge or lien on the immovable
property belonging to him in West Pakistan, the Tribunal may, for the purpose
of any proceeding under this Act, require the creditor to elect to retain the
security or to be treated as an unsecured creditor.
(2) If the creditor elects to retain the
security, he may a ply to the Tribunal, having jurisdiction in this behalf as
provided in section 10, for a declaration of the amount due under his debt.
(3) Where in any case, the creditor elects to
retain his security, if the displaced debtor receives any compensation in
respect of any such property as is referred to in sub- section (1), the
creditor shall be entitled- (a) Where the compensation is paid in cash, to a
first charge thereon :
Provided that the amount of the debt in respect
of which he shall be entitled to the first charge shall be that amount as bears
to the total debt the same proportion as the com- pensation paid in respect of
the property bears to the value of the verified claim in respect thereof and to
that extent the debt shall be deemed to have been reduced;
(b) where the compensation is by way of ex-
change of property, to a first charge on the property situate in India so
received by way of exchange :
300 Provided that the amount of the debt in
respect of which he shall be entitled to the first charge shall be that amount
as bears to the total debt the same proportion as the value of the property
received by way of exchange bears to the value of the verified claim in respect
thereof and to that extent the debt shall be deemed to have been reduced.
(4)Notwithstanding anything contained in this
section, where a debt is secured by a mortgage of agricultural lands belonging
to a displaced person in West Pakistan and the mortgage was with possession,
the mortgagee shall, if he has been allotted lands in India in lieu of the
lands of which he was in possession in West Pakistan, be entitled to continue
in possession of the lands so allotted until the debt is satisfied from the
usufruct of the lands or is redeemed by the debtor :
Provided that in either case the amount of
the debt shall be only that amount as bears to the total debt the same
proportion as the value of the lands allotted to the creditor in India bears to
the value of the lands left behind by him in West Pakistan and to that extent
the debt shall be deemed to have been reduced.
(5)Where a creditor elects to be treated as
an unsceured creditor, in relation to the debt, the provisions of this Act
shall apply accordingly. " Section 29 (1) enacts "29. (1) On and from
the 15th day of August, 1947, no interest shall accrue or be deemed to have
accrued in respect of any debt owed by a displaced person, and no Tribunal
shall allow 301 any future interest in respect of any decree or order passed by
it Provided that- (a) where the debt is secured by the pledge of shares,
stocks, Government securities or securities of a local authority, the Tribunal
shall allow for the period commencing from the 15th day of August, 1947, and
ending with the date of commencement of this Act, interest to the creditor at
the rate mutually agreed upon or at a rate at which any dividend or interest
has been paid or is payable in respect thereof, whichever is less ;
(b) in any other case the Tribunal may, if it
thinks it just and proper to do so after taking into account the paying
capacity of the debtor as defined in section 32, allow, for the period
mentioned in clause (a), interest at a rate not exceeding four per cent, per
annum simple." We shall now proceed to detail the points that were urged
before us by learned Counsel for the appellant : (1) The first contention
raised before us was that Pratap Singh---the representative of the purchaser of
the equity of redemption-was not a "debtor" within s. 2 (6), because
there was no contractual relationship between him and the displaced creditor i.
e., the appellants. The argument was broadly on these lines : Section 2 (6) of
the Act defined the word 'debt' and the expression "debt' is employed in
2 (9) as also in s. 5 (1) under which the application
giving rise to this appeal was filed. The essence of that definition is that it
involves a pecuniary liability -on the part of the 'debtor' enforceable by a
creditor.Thus it was urged that a mortgagor under a purely 302 usufructuary
mortgage where there was no personal covenant to repay the loan, could not be
said to be a debtor and the amount secured under such a mortgage could not
therefore be a "debt" within the definition. The position of a
purchaser of the equity of redemption Vis-a-Vis the mortgagee was, learned
Counsel urged, similar. He further urged that the fact in the case of a
purchaser of the equity of redemption, even if the mortgagee could bring a suit
for the recovery of the mortgage-money and in enforcement of that liability the
mortgaged property could be sold was not sufficient to make him a debtor as
according to him the absence of a personal liability to discharge the
obligation out of his other property not under mortgage was the essence of a
debtor and creditor relationship under the definition. In support of this
submission learned Counsel referred us to two decisions one of the Lahore High
Court in Lachhman Singh v. Natha Singh (1), and the other of the Bombay High
Court in Manubhai Mahijibhai Patel v. Trikamlal Lakshmidas (2), turned on the
meaning of the expression "debt' in the Punjab Relief of Indebtedness Act
(Act VII of 1934) and it was held that the amount secured by a pure
usufructuary mortgage which neither stipulated for the personal liability of
the obligor to pay, nor conferred on the obligee the right to recover the
amount by the coercive machinery of law, could not be called a 'debt' in that
essence of the concept of 'debt' consisted in the personal liability of the
obligor which the obligee was entitled to enforce by action. This decision,
even apart from the terms of s. 16 of the Act which in terms includes an
usufructuary mortgage in the category of "'a debt" for the purposes
of the Act, affords little assistance to the appellant before us, because the
mortgage of 1933 in favour of the appellant contains a covenant on the part of
the mortgagor to repay the debt after 10 years and in consequence the mortgagee
was entitled to file a suit (1) I,L.R. 1941 Lah. 71, (2) I.L,R. 1958 Bom, 1429
303 for the recovery of his debt and realise it from the sale of the mortgaged
property and also obtain a personal decree under 0. XXXIV, r. 6 against the
mortgagor-Sham Singh-though he might not be entitled to a personal decree
against the purchaser of the equity of redemption. The other decision of the
Bombay High Court dealt with the construction of the Bombay Agricultural
Debtors' Relief Act and the headnote specifies the point decided as being that
in the absence of an agreement making a mortgagor personally liable to the mortgagee,
a purchaser of the equity of redemption was not entitled to apply under s. 4 of
that Act for the adjustment of the mortgage debt, inasmuch as such a mortgage
debt was not "his debt" within the meaning of s. 4. This extract
sufficiently shows that decision turned wholly upon the definitions contained
in the enactment before the court and could not be called in aid as laying down
any general propositions of universal application. On the other hand, there is
a decision of the High Court of the Punjab in Lahori Lal v. Kasturi Lal (1), in
which the Bench held that a debt as defined in s. 2 (6) of the Act now under
consideration was not limited to personal liabilities only.
We consider that the Act has not left the
meaning of the expression "debt" where such debt is secured by a
mortgage including an usufructuary mortgage in any manner of doubt, but on the
other hand by making specific provision therefore, has put beyond the pale of
argument that these are "debts" which could be scaled down under it.
We have already extracted s. 16 of the Act which contains the provision for
adjustment of debts where these are secured by mortgage on immovable property.
As the property which is the security for the mortgagee is situate in West
Pakistan sub-s. (1) applies which affords the creditor an option either to
retain the security or to be treated as an unsecured creditor.
(1) (1956) 58 P. L. R. 331, 304 It is common
ground that the appellant desired to retain the security. Sub-section (2)
therefore comes into play and enables the creditor to move the Tribunal for a
declaration regarding the amount due to him in respect of that mortgage.
In the present case the debtor himself having
made the application under s. 5, there was no need for any application by the
creditor. The reliefs which a creditor might obtain in case of his election to
retain the security are set out in sub-ss. (3) and (4), the former being
applicable to simple mortgages and the latter where the mortgage is
usufructuary i.e., with possession. Sub-scction (4) which is relevant to the
mortgage debt involved in this appeal runs :
"(4). Notwithstanding anything contained
in this section, where a debt is secured by mortgage of agricultural lands
belonging to a displaced person in West Pakistan and the mortgage was with
possession, the mortgagee shall, if he has been allotted lands in India in lieu
of the lands of which he was in possession in West Pakistan, be entitled to
continue in possession of the lands so allotted until tile debt is satisfied
from the usufruct of the lands or is redeemed by the debtor :- Provided that in
either case the amount of the debt shall be only that amount as bears to the
total debt the same proportion as the value of the lands allotted to the
creditor in India bears to the value of the lands left behind by him in West
Pakistan and to that extent the debt shall be deemed to have been
reduced." It was not disputed that the debt due to the appellant was
secured by a mortgage of agricultural 305 lands and that those lands belonged
to a displaced person from West Pakistan. It was also common ground that the
mortgage in favour of the appellant was with possession. It ought to be
mentioned that it was by virtue of provisions on the lines of the opening words
of sub-s. (4) contained in the rules and executive orders which were in force
in 1950, that the appellant was put in possession of the 37.4 and
14.5 standard acres belonging respectively to
Pratap Singh and Sham Singh. It is therefore very difficult to appreciate the
argument urged on behalf of the appellant that the provisions of sub-s. (4) of
s. 16 are not attracted to the present case. In the first place the words
"and the mortgage is with possession" are perfectly general and
therefore apt and comprehensive enough to include not merely usufructuary
mortgages in which there is personal convenant on the part of the mortgagor to
repay the debt, but also what are usually termed "pure" usufructuary
mortgages containing no such personal covenant. There is, therefore, no scope
for the argument based on the analogy of other enactments in which the word
'debt' has been construed as indicating the necessity for a personal liability
or an obligation to repay on the part of the debtor. Having regard to the terms
of s. 16 (4) the security being by way of usufructuary mortgage and the right
of a debtor to redeem are sufficient to enable the beneficient provisions of
the section being attracted. It is only necessary to add that what might have
been apparentfrom what we have said earlier, viz., (1) that the point based
upon the definition of a debt in s.2(6)is wholly inapplicable to the case of
Sham Singh,since the mortgage itself contained a personal con(2) that even in
regard to Pratap Singh, the other applicant, the contention has a very limited
application since having regard to the personal covenant the mortgagee had a
right to sue for the enforcement of his mortgage and recover the money from the
sale of the mortgaged property.
So 306 that apart even from the terms of s.
16 (4) the liability under the mortgage in favour of the appellant would
squarely fall within the definition in S. (6). The matter is, however, put
beyond the range of controversy by the specific provision in regard to all
usufructuary mortgages by s. 16 (4) of the Act. In this connection we might
refer to the decision of this Court in Rajkumari Kaushalya Devi v. Bawa Pritam
Singh (1), where it was ruled that a mortgage-debt was within the definition of
the word ,debt' in s. 2 (6) of the Act. No doubt., that case was not concerned with
the distinction between cases where the creditor has a right to proceed
personally against the debtor and cases where he has not, as in the case of a
pure usufructuary mortgage, but the decision is useful as indicating that the
expression pecuniary liability' in s. 2 (6) has to be understood not in
isolation but with reference to other provisions of the Act and particularly s.
16. We are, therefore, clearly of the opinion that every usufructuary mortgage,
whatever its nature, is within the definition of 'debt' under the Act for the
purpose of scaling down under s. 16 and that it is wholly immaterial whether or
not the creditor is entitled to proceed personally against the debtor and
recover the amount of the mortgage.
(2) The next contention urged by the learned
Counsel has been less substance than the one we have just disposed of.
It was said that the liability under a
mortgage debt could be scaled down and adjusted under the Act only in a suit
for redemption filed by the creditor and that it was incompetent for a debtor
to invoke the jurisdiction of the Tribunal to effect the scaling down and
adjustment by an application under s. 5. We do not consider that this argument
merits serious consideration. Section 5 (1) of the Act which we have extracted
enables a "debtor" to make an application to the tribunal for the
adjustment of his debts. In view of what we have stated (1)  3 S.C.R.
570, 307 earlier the amount due on or secured by the mortgage is a
"debt" within the meaning of S. 5 to settle which an application
could be filed and the debt being a secured debt answering to the description
contained in the main part of s. 16 (4), the applicants were entitled to have
an adjustment in terms of that specified in the proviso to that section. Though
this point about the locus standi of the respondent-debtors to file the
application has been persisted in by the appellants at every stage of these
proceedings, we consider that there is no merit in it and it has to be rejected
on the plain terms of s. 5 read with s. 16.
(3)The third and last objection urged by the
learned Counsel turns on the language of the proviso to s. 16 (4) which we
shall extract once again :
"Provided that in either case the amount
of the debt shall be only that amount as bears to the total debt the same
proportion as the value of the lands allotted to the creditor in India bears to
the value of the lands left behind him in the West Pakistan and to that extent
the debt shall be deemed to have been reduced." Learned Counsel pointed out
that the scaling down effected in the present case was on the following basis.
The total mortgage-debt under the mortgage deed was computed at Rs.
51,700/-calculating interest as permitted by
the relevant statutory provisions and taking into account s. 29 which we have
already extracted. The correctness of this figure was not disputed. The quarrel
of learned Counsel was in regard to what follows and that is stated in the
order of the Tribunal which has been confirmed by the appellate Court in these
"The total mortgaged land now belonging
to the petitioner (Pratap Singh) and respondent No. 5 (Sham Singh) has been
assessed as 308 equivalent to 359 standard acres 14-3/4 units (329 standard
acres 13-3/4 units of the petitioner plus 22 standard acres 6-1/2 units of the
respondent No. 5) and in lieu thereof the mortgagors have been given in all 51
standard acres 9 units (37.4 to the petitioners and 14.5 to the respondent No.
As provided under s. 16 (4) of the Act the
amount of the debt payable to respondents 1 to 4 has been reduced in the same
proportion in which the land has been allotted to the mortgagors. For the land
belonging to them the mortgage debt amounting to Rs. 51,700/- when reduced to
this proportion comes approximately to Rs. 7,420/-." It is this reduction
that learned Counsel complains as not justified by the proviso. The argument is
that under the proviso to s. 16 (4) the reduction of the debt has to bear the
same proportion as "the value of the lands" allotted to the creditor in
India bears to "the value of lands" left by him in Pakistan.
"Value", learned Counsel says, means market value. It is urged that
value of neither of the lands was computed on that basis but that the Tribunal
took into account merely the proportion between the two extents or areas i.e.,
the standard acres left in Pakistan compared to the standard acres allotted in
India in lieu thereof.
This contention that the procedure adopted
does not accord with the requirements of the proviso has been rejected by all
the Courts and, in our opinion, correctly. The fallacy in the argument of
learned Counsel consists in ignoring the fact that in computing the standard
acres left by a displaced person in Pakistan the rehabilitation authorities
are, under the relevant rules and instructions, directed to take into account
the income yield of the two sets of lands and thus the "value" of the
land left behind is reflected in ascertaining the "standard acres."
Thus though market value in the sense of what a willing purchaser would pay for
the 309 land left behind was not ascertained-it was obviously not practicable
to ascertain it-the rules etc., made sufficient provision for such a valuation
to be reflected in the computation of the area to be allotted instead. The
nature of the land left behind-whether it was canal-irrigated, well-irrigated
or dry or merely rain-fed-was taken into account and numerical factors were
prescribed based on these criteria for ascertaining the equivalent of those,
lands in India. It was after such a computation was made that the 7531 Kanals
and odd of land which belonged to the respondents was equated to 359 and odd
standard acres. If therefore 359 standard acres were the equivalent in value of
the land left behind, regard being had to the circumstances we have indicated,
there cannot be any complaint that there has been a departure from the method
of adjustment specified in the proviso to s. 16 (4) when the debt as
ascertained and computed in accordance with s. 29 of the Act and other relevant
statutory provisions was scaled down under s. 16 (4) by multiplying it by
51/359, or 1/7 th. We are further of the opinion that when the provision in
proviso to s. 16 (1) spoke of "value" it must have had in
contemplation the value as determined by the procedure for fixing the same
under the relevant rules for the computation of equivalents of property of
displaced persons left behind in Pakistan and the allotment of evacuee property
to them in India. There is no substance, therefore, in this point either. These
were the only points urged before us. The appeal fails and is dismissed with