Report No. 148
4.3. Dehradun Act, 1871 (22 of 1871).-
The tract of the country known as Dehradun had, on several occasions, been removed by legislative enactment form one jurisdiction to another. The final effect of these transfers was assumed to be that the Dehradun tract was subject to the operation of Central Regulations and Acts, and, for many years, past the administration of justice had been conducted on that assumption.
But in the case of Dick v. Heseltine, the High Court ruled that the General Regulations and Acts were not legally in force in Dehradun.1 Hence legislation for the purpose of giving validity to the past proceedings of the local courts which by the decision in Dick v. Heseltine were in effect declared to have been illegal, became necessary. Accordingly, the Dehradun Act, 1871 was passed. The Act was intended to be only a temporary measure and was to be eventually absorbed in a more comprehensive legislation.
By the United Provinces High Courts (Amalgamation) Order, 1948, High Court of Judicature at Allahabad was invested with all original, appellate and other jurisdictions in respect of whole of the United Provinces under the law in force immediately before 19th July, 1948. The aforesaid Order of 1948 amended the Letters Patent establishing the High Court of Judicature for the North Western Provinces at Allahabad.
As far as we can see, the need for maintaining the Dehradun Act on the statute book has not disappeared. Territorial changes in one particular year do not necessarily render redundant all enactments passed earlier in order to deal with the legal consequences of any earlier territorial changes that may have raised legal issues. We are not, therefore in a position to recommend repeal of the Dehradun Act.
1. See Gazette of India, 1871, Part V, p. 221 and Supplement, pp. 907-908, 1050