Kumaraswami Sastri, J.
1. I have in my order of reference dealt with the cases, both English and Indian, dealing with the question referred. Sections 12 and 13 of the Indian Arbitration Act are taken almost verbatim from Sections 9 and 10 of the English Arbitration Act. So far as the English Act is concerned, the authorities are clear that the Court has power to extend the time in the case of remitted awards even though the award has been delivered. I need only refer to Lord v. Lee (1868) LR 3 QB 404 and to the decision of the Court of Appeal in Knowles & Sons, Ltd. v. Bolton Corporation (1900) LR 2 QB 253.
2. Louis Dreyfus & Co. v. Rajagopal Aiyar (1922) 16 LW 657 and Tejpal lamunadas v. Nathmull & Co. (1919) ILR 46 C 1059 also follow the view taken by the English Courts. So far as the cases under the Civil Procedure Code are concerned, there has been a diversity of opinion. To the cases I have already referred to in the order of reference I might add Gopalji Kallianji v. Chhaganlal Vitthalji (1920) ILR 45 B 1071 where Sir Norman MacLeod, C. J., and Shah, J., were of opinion that the decision of their Lordships of the Privy Council in Raja Har Narain Singh v. Chaudarain Bhagwant Knar (1891) LR 18 IA 55 : ILR 13 A 300 (P C) prevented Courts from extending the time after the delivery of the award even in cases under the Code of 1908. But this decision was not under the Arbitration Act, as a reference was made in a pending suit. I think there are not sufficient grounds for dissenting from the decisions I have already referred to, both English and Indian, which gave the Court power to extend the time even after the award has been delivered so as to cure any defect in the award owing to its having been delivered after the time fixed had elapsed. There seems to be no reason to limit the power under Section 13 of the Arbitration Act which admittedly gives power to extend the time beyond the period of three months before the award is delivered. I am unable to accept the extreme contention put forward by Mr. Venkataramana Rao that an extension beyond three months should be in the order remitting the award itself and that where three months have been fixed by the order the Court has no power to extend the time. Such a construction would lead to obvious injustice as it may be that after the order has been made fixing 3 months the arbitrators find that owing to a number of witnesses to be examined or other circumstances which prevent the finishing of the enquiry in 3 months further time is to be granted. There is, in my opinion, power to extend the time subsequent to the order which fixed three months as the period ; and if there is this power there is no reason why such time should not be extended after the award is delivered. If under Section 12 the Court can extend the time for the delivery of the award even though the time has expired it should have the power to extend the time when it remits an award unless there are very strong reasons to come to a contrary conclusion.
3. The Civil Procedure Code of 1908 deals with awards in the second schedule and Rule 14 deals with the remission of awards to arbitrators. Rule 15 says that an award remitted shall not be set aside except on the grounds mentioned in that rule and one of the grounds is that the award was made after the expiration of the period allowed by the Court. Rule 8 deals with extension of time for making award. It is argued by Mr. Venkataramana Rao that there is no difference between the Civil Procedure Code and the Indian Arbitration Act on the question of extension of time and that if the giving of the award after the expiry of time allowed by the Court entitles a party to have it set aside so far as arbitrations under the Code are concerned, the same rule should be applied to arbitrations out of Court. It is further argued that the decision of their Lordships of the Privy Council in Raja Har Narain Singh v. Chaudarain Bhagwant Kuar (1891) LR 18 I A 55 : ILR 13 A 300 (P C) though passed under the Code of 1882 is equally applicable to the present Code. Section 521 of the Code of 1882 with which their Lordships of the Privy Council were dealing enacts that no award shall be valid unless made within the period allowed by the Court. This clause is omitted in Rule 15 which I have already referred to and all that Rule 15 says is that the Court shall not set aside an award except on one of the grounds mentioned therein. I think this omission is not merely accidental and the question is how far under the new Code the omission of such a clause in Rule 15 of the second schedule which corresponds to Section 521 of the old Code without the last clause gives the Court discretion to extend the time even where the time for passing the award has expired. Chitty, J., in Sri Lal v. Arjun Das (1914) 18 CWN 1325 was of opinion that the amendment introduced by the Code of 1908 gave the Court discretion even under the C.P. Code. I may point out that so far as the Arbitration Act is concerned, there is no section corresponding to the last clause of Section 521 preventing the Court from extending the time fixed in a remitted award. 1 think the proper way of construing Sections 12 and 13 of the Arbitration Act is to read them together. Where an award is set aside under Section 13, either in whole or in part, and remitted to arbitrators, the effect of it is to re-open the proceedings under the Arbitration Act, the necessity for fixing three months or some time to deliver the award arising out of the fact that the time fixed in the original award might have expired before the remission or might have been considerably reduced. Once an award is set aside and remitted to arbitrators, I find it difficult to see why Section 12 should not apply to proceedings after remission as the matter then is really a matter in a pending arbitration without the original award having been set aside and why the provisions of Section 12 as to extension of time should not apply. The Court has, according to all the decisions 1 have referred to, both English and Indian, power to extend the time under Section 12 of the Indian Arbitration Act, which corresponds to Section 9 of the English Arbitration Act, even after the award has been delivered. There seems to me to be no reason why, when an award is remitted, a similar power should not exist unless there is something in the wording of the Act which compels me to come to a contrary conclusion.
4. I am of opinion that the decision of their Lordships of the Privy Council in Raja liar Narain Singh v. Chaudarain Bhagwant Kuar (1891) LR 18 IA 55 : ILR 13 A 300 (P C), which was passed under the Civil Procedure Code of 1882 does not constrain us in dealing with Sections 12 and 13 of the Arbitration Act to put a restriction on the power of the Court under Section 13 and to hold that although under Section 13 the Court might extend the time beyond three months if it did so in the. order of remission, it has no power to do so once the award has been I would answer the reference in the affirmative and hold that the Court has power to extend the time.
Murray Coutts Trotter, Kt., C.J.
6. I agree.
7. I agree. I may point out that a period of three months for making an original award, unless otherwise agreed, is fixed by Schedule 1 of the Arbitration Act. The effect of Section 13 (2) of the Act appears to me to be to fix a similar period, unless the Court otherwise directs, for an award to be made after remission ; it does not affect the power given to the Court by Section 12, which I understand to apply both to original awards and to awards made after remission. The Court can therefore extend the time for making an award on remission even after the time fixed either by Section 13 (2) or by the Court has expired. I agree that we need not apply the decision of the Privy Council in Raja Har Narain Singh v. Chaudarain Bhagwant Kuar (1891) LR 18 I A 55 : ILR 13 A 300 (P C) which related to the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure of 1882 to the present case. And under the present Code an award is not invalid merely because it is made after the time allowed. Here it is not the Code but the Arbitration Act which we have to interpret ; and I see nothing to prevent the Court from retrospectively extending under Section 12 of the Act the time fixed for making an award on remission so as to cover such an award already made after the expiry of the time previously fixed by Section 13 (2) or by the Court.