The City of Bombay Municipal (Supplementary) Act, 1888

The City of Bombay Municipal (Supplementary) Act, 1888 (Act no. 12 of 1888) was enacted long back in the era of British India during the period of East India Company rules in India. The present enactment was passed and given assent by the Governor General of India in Council by 12th October, 1888. The main object and purpose for which the present enactment was brought into force was to supplement certain provisions of the then City of Bombay Municipal Act, 1888, which is now know as ‘The Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act’. The provisions regarding appeals to the high Court, etc. are contained in the present Act. Its short title as afore mentioned was given by the Bombay Act no. 2 of the year 1926. And earlier, in its preamble the object was also provided to supplement the certain provisions of the Calcutta Municipal Consolidation Act, however, the said mention was taken off by the Calcutta Municipal Act of 1899.

It was provided under the first provision of the Act that in so far as the jurisdiction of Municipal Authorities’ appellate benches and of Presidency Magistrates and Other Magistrates and of Courts or Judges of Small Causes conferred by the City of Bombay Municipal Act, 1888 and all orders, decisions and other proceedings thereof, were sought to be validated, as if they had been passed at the meetings by the Central government for enacting Laws or regulations. The provision of section 2 of the Act was dealing with the references to the High Court of Bombay, from the Chief Judge of the small cause Court of Bombay, however, the said provision was repealed by the Act of 1948.

Further, section 3 of the Act was making provisions as to appeal to the High Court of Bombay judicature against the decisions passed by the Bombay’s Chief Judge of Court of Small Causes within the provisions of the Section 503 and 504 of the City of Bombay Municipal Act, 1888. However, such appeal could only be preferred before such High Court of Bombay Judicature, if the amount of the claim in respect of which earlier decision was passed was more than Rs. 2000.

In relation to such appeals, the provisions provided in respect of appeals against the original decree of the Civil Court within the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (Code no. 5 of 1908) were made applicable by this Act. And all decisions passed by the High Court under such appeals against the earlier decisions of the Chief Judge of the Small Causes Court of Bombay, could be executed by the said Chief Judge as if the same had been passed by him. And the Act made it clear that the earlier decision of the said Chief Judge will be final if no such appeal was preferred against such decision. Similarly, against the decision or orders which was passed by the Presidency Magistrate within the provisions of section 515 of the City of Bombay Municipal Act, 1888, the appal could also be lied before the High Court of Judicature at Bombay. The said High Court was empowered under section 4(2) of the Act to provide for rules in order to regulate the admission of appeals under this Act and also to regulate the procedure which should be followed by the High Court in relation to those appeals. And while pendency of appeal against such orders of the Presidency Magistrate, the City of Bombay’s Municipal Commissioner should not take action upon such orders till disposal of such appeal. The High Court of Bombay judicature, while disposing of an appeal could also direct the payment of costs against any party thereof either partially or wholly.

Finally, section 5 of the Act was providing for the applicability of the Indian Limitation Act, 1877 (Act no. 15 of 1877) as the it was applicable to the appeals against the decisions of the Civil Courts.

However, recently in the year 2014 the Law Commission of India has recommended the repealing of the present Act by its Report no. 249 being ‘Second Interim report – Obsolete Laws: Warranting Immediate Repeal’ on ‘Legal Enactments: Simplifications and Streamlining’ as the Act being ‘The City of Bombay Municipal Act, 1888’ was renamed as ‘The Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act’  and these supplementary provisions were incorporated into the said Act and as such the present law has now become redundant. Such repeal was sought to be made after having consultation with the State of Maharashtra.

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