T. S. FERNANDO, J".—Sandanam v. Commissioner far Registration of Indian 95
and Pakistani Residents
1960Present :T. S. Fernando, J.P.SANDANAM, AppeUant, and COMMISSIONER FOR REGISTRA-TION OF INDIAN AND PAKISTANI RESIDENTS,
S. O. 59—Citizenship Application N4508
Indian and Pakistani Residents (Citizenship) Act, No. 3 of 1949—Appeal from orderof Commissioner—Computation of time limit—Reservation of order afterinquiry—Prior notice to applicant necessary—Sections 9 (3), 14 (7).
The time limit for appeal from an order made under the Indian and Pakistani *Residents (Citizenship) Act must be computed as from the date when theorder was communicated to the applicant.
Where, after an inquiry into an application made by a person for registrationas a citizen under the Indian and Pakistani Residents (Citizenship) Act, an orderis not made forthwith, it is the duty of the Commissioner, under section 14 (7)of the Act, to give notice of the date on which he proposes to make the order."Failure to give sucb notice to the applicant would render the order invalid.
xxPPEAIj under the Indian and Pakistani Residents (Citizenship) Act.
S. P. Amerasingham, for the applicant-appellant.
Ananda G. de Silva, Crown Counsel, for the Attorney-General.
Our. adv. vult.
May 24, 1960. T. S. Ferhastdo, J.—
An inquiry was held by a Deputy Commissioner on 6th January 1956into an application made by the appellant for registration as a'citizenunder Act No. 3 of 1949 after notice given in terms of section 9 (3) of thesame Act, and at the conclusion of that inquiry the Deputy Commis-sioner reserved his order. Section 14 (7) required the Deputy Com-missioner, where he was not making an order forthwith upon the conclu-sion of an inquiry held in pursuance of section 9 (3), to give notice to theapplicant of the date on which he proposed to make the order. TheDeputy Commissioner failed to comply with this requirement so thatthe applicant had no notice of the date on which the order was to be made.It would appear from the record that at the conclusion of the inquiryon 6th January the Deputy Commissioner had not himself decided uponany date for the making of the order. The record also shows that on17th January 1956 in the perfunctory order reproduced below the DeputyCommissioner refused the application :—
“ I refuse the application. The evidence of witnesses and applicantdoes not corroborate each other’s.
As such their evidence is unreliable, vide side lines.
A P. F. C. has not been established. ”
96 T. S- EERNANDO, J.—Sandanam v. Commissioner for Registration of Indian
and Pakistani Residents
It does not appear on record that the appellant was present before himon 17th January 1956, and there is no record to show that this orderwas communicated to the appellant. In reply to an inquiry made bythe appellant on 12th September 1957 as to the result of his applicationa reply was sent to him on 28th September 1957 to say that his “ applica-tion was refused after inquiry on 17th January 1956 A petition ofappeal was preferred on 5th March 1958, and learned Crown Counselsubmits that the appeal is out of time. As to this point, Mr. Amera-singham replies that even the letter of 28th September 1957 sent by theCommissioner did not contain a copy of the order or any of the reasonsfor refusal of the application, and that it was only after the appellanthad paid a sum of money for a certified copy of the order that such acopy was supplied to him on 13th December 1957. He submits that ifthe date of communication of the order be considered as 13th December1957, the appellant is not out of time. He relies on the decision of two-judges in the case of Subramaniam v. The Commissioner for Registrationof Indian and Pakistani Residents 1. That case is undoubtedly authorityfor holding that the appeal preferred in this case has not been shown tobe out of time.
A further argument* has been submitted by Mr. Amerasingham thatthere has been no valid order at all upon the inquiry held into the appel-lant’s application. The order that had to be made was an order in termsof section 14 (7) of the Act and, as that order was not made forthwithupon the conclusion of the inquiry, it was required to be made on a dateof which the applicant had prior notice. The requirement in respect ofnotice of the date of the order is, in my opinion, an imperative provisionof the law. The order in question was admittedly not made on such adate and, therefore, there has been no valid order hitherto made uponthis application.
The order of 17th January 1956 purporting to refuse the appellant’sapplication must be set aside. Inquiry shall be held afresh after noticegiven to the appellant. The appellant is entitled to the costs of thisappeal fixed at Rs. 105.
Order set aside,
1 (1955) 57 N. L. R. 186.
P. SANDANAM, Appellant, and COMMISSIONER FOR REGISTRATION OF INDIAN AND PAKISTAN