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Ministry of Law and Justice

Act nº 18 of 1876

  • Part I
  • Part II
  • Part III
    • Chapter I
    • Chapter II
    • Chapter III
    • Chapter IV
    • Chapter V
    • Chapter VI
  • Schedules
  • Act nº 18 of 1876



[Act, No.18 of 1876]

[AS ON 1956]

[10th October, 1876]


An Act to declare and amend the laws to be administered in Oudh.

WHEREAS it is expedient to declare and amend the laws to be administered in Oudh; It is hereby enacted as follows:-

Part I

Section 1. Short title

This Act may be called the Oudh Laws Act, 1876.

Local extent.- It extends only to {The words "the territories for the time being administered by the Chief Commissioner of" rep.by the A.O.1937.} Oudh;

Commencement.- and it shall come into force on the passing thereof.

Section 2. Repeal of enactments [Repealed]

Rep.by the Repealing Act, 1938 (1 of 1938), s.2 and Sch.

Part II

Section 3. Statutory law to be administered in oudh

{The provisions of this section have been rep.in so far as they are inconsistent with the Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act, 1937 (26 of 1937); see s.6 of that Act.}

The law to be administered by the Courts of Oudh shall be as follows:-

(a) the laws for the time being in force regulating the assessment and collection of land-revenue:

(b) in questions regarding succession, special property of females, betrothal, marriage, divorce, dower, adoption, guardianship, minority, bastardy, farmily relations, wills, legacies, gifts, partitions, or any religious usage or institution, the rule of decision shall be-

(l) any custom applicable to the parties concerned which is not contrary to justice, equity or good conscience, and has not been, by this or any other enactment, altered or abolished, and has not been declared to be void by any competent authority;

(2) the Muhammadan law in cases where the parties are Muhammadans, and the Hindu law in cases where the parties are Hindus, except in so far as such ]aw has been, by this or any other enactment, altered or abolished, or has been modified by any such custom as is above referred to:

(c) the rules contained in this Act:

(d) the rules published in the Official Gazette as provided by section 40, or made under any other Act for the time being in force in Oudh:

(e) the Regulations and Acts specified in the second schedule hereto annexed, subject to the provisions of section 4, and to the modifications mentioned in the third column of the same schedule:

(f) subject to the modifications hereinafter mentioned, all enactments for the time being in force and expressly, or by necessary implication, applying to1[ the territories which, immediately before the 1st November, 1956 were comprised in Part A States and Part C States ] or Oudh, or some part of Oudh:

(g) in cases not provided for by the former part of this section, or by any other law for the time being in force, the Courts shall act according to justice, equity and good conscience.

1. Substituted for "Part A States and Part C States" by 2.A.L.O. 1956 w.e.f 1-11-1956.

Section 4. Validity of local customs and mercantitle usage

All local customs and mercantile usage's shall be regarded as valid, unless they are contrary to justice, equity or good conscience, or have, before the passing of this Act, been declared to be void by and competent authority.

Part III

Chapter I

Section 5. Muthammadan dower contracts how to be enforced

Where the amount of dower stipulated for in any contract of dower by a Muhammadan is excessive with reference to the means of the husband, the entire sum provided in the contract shall not be awarded in any suit by decree in favour of the plaintiff, or by allowing it by way of set-off, lien or otherwise to the defendant; but the amount of the dower to be allowed by the Court shall be reasonable with reference to the means of the husband and the status of the wife.

Rule applicable after husbands death.-

This rule shall be applicable whether the suit to enforce the contract be brought in the husband's life time or after his death.

Chapter II

Section 6. Right of pre-emption

The right of pre-emption is a right of the persons hereinafter in mentioned or referred to, to acquire, in the cases hereinafter specified, immovable property in preference to all other persons.

Section 7. Presumption as to its existence

Unless the existence of any custom or contract to the contrary is proved, such right shall, whether recorded in the settlement-record or not, be presumed-

(a) to exist in all village-communities, however constituted, and whether proprietary or under-proprietary, and in the cases referred to in section 40 of the Oudh Land-revenue Act, (17 of 1876) {See now the U.P.Land Revenue Act, 1901 (U.P.3 of 1901).} and

(b) to extend to the village-site, to the houses built upon it, to all lands and shares of lands within the village-boundary, and to all transferable rights affecting such lands.

Section 8. Its existence in towns to be proved

The right of pre-emption shall not be presumed to exist in any town or city, or any sub-division thereof, but may be whom to exist therein and to be exercisable therein by such persons and under such circumstances as the local custom prescribes.

Section 9. Devolution of right when property to property to be sold or forclosed is a proprietary or under proprietary tenure

If the property to be sold or foreclosed is a proprietary or under-proprietary tenure, or a share of such a tenure, the right to buy or redeem such property belongs, in the absence of a custom to the contrary,-

1st, to co-sharers of the sub-division (if any) of the tenure in which the property is comprised, in order of their relationship to the vendor or mortgagor;

2ndly, to co-sharers of the whole mahal in the same order;

thirdly, to any member of the village-community; and

fourthly, if the property be an under proprietary tenure, to the proprietor.

Where two or more persons are equally entitled to such right' the person to exercise the same shall be determined by lot.