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Report No. 13

71. Section 56.-

This section marks a departure from the English Common Law to a considerable extent and it is neither profitable nor necessary to examine which of the various theories underlying the doctrine of Frustration in English Law are applicable to cases arising under this section. The Supreme Court of India in the case of Satyabrata v. Mugneeram, AIR 1954 SC 44 has repelled the suggestion that section 56 is not exhaustive. The word 'impossible' is to be construed in its practical rather than in its literal sense. It is worthy of note that the impossibility referred to in the section was never understood to include what is known as commercial impossibility. We are not aware of any occasion when in practice the application of the section, as it stands, has involved any inconvenience or difficulty of interpretation and, therefore, we are in favour of leaving the section intact.

Indian Contract Act, 1872 Back

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