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The Agricultural Debtors Act, 1935

( ACT NO. VII OF 1936 )

Adjustment of an insolvent debtor's debts
22.(1) When the Board is satisfied that the debts of a debtor are such that they cannot be reduced under the provisions of section 19 to an amount which he will be able to repay within twenty years, and that the debtor is a fit person to be given the benefit of this section, the Board if it is so empowered under section 7, may, subject to rules made under this Act and after considering all the circumstances of the debtor, by a written order declare him to be insolvent and may by such order either-
(a) reduce his debts to such amounts as it considers that he can pay within a period, not exceeding twenty years, to be mentioned in the order, or
(b) if, for reasons to be recorded in writing, it does not consider the reduction of his debts under clause (a) to be desirable, direct that, subject to the provisions of sub-section (4) and of section 24, all his property shall be sold and the proceeds shall be utilised towards the payment of his debts in such manner as may be specified in the order.
(2) The certificate officer shall, on the requisition of the Board in the prescribed form, sell the property of the debtor referred to in clause (b) of sub-section (1) in the manner provided in the Public Demand Recovery Act, 1913 and the provisions of the said Act regarding sales in execution of certificates shall, subject to the provisions of this Act, apply to such sale.
(3) When the Board reduces the debts of an insolvent under clause (a) of sub-section (1), it shall specify in the order what sum he shall pay in each year towards the settlement of the debts as so reduced and in what manner such sums shall be distributed among the creditors:
Provided that the sum to be paid in each year shall be fixed by the Board at an amount which, in its estimation, is likely, in a year of normal harvest, to leave to the insolvent as provision towards his maintenance one-half of the surplus which remains from the value of the produce of his land after paying to the landlord the current rent due for such land.
(4) When the Board directs the sale of an insolvent's property under clause (b) of sub-section (1), it shall set aside, as provision towards his maintenance, not more than one-third of
the land held by him in his direct possession exclusive of the and occupied by his dwelling house:
Provided that, even if he holds less than three acres of land in his direct possession, the Board shall thus set aside not less than one acre of the land so held exclusive of the land occupied by his dwelling house:
Provided further that no portion of the immovable property of an insolvent shall be exempted under this sub-section from sale for realisation of arrears of rent.
(5) When the property of the insolvent referred to in clause (b) of sub-section (1) has been sold under sub-section (2) or when he has paid all the sums fixed by the Board under sub-section (3) or when his property has been sold under section 28, the Board shall make an order of discharge and grant him a certificate of discharge in the prescribed form. Such certificate shall release the insolvent from all debts which were or might have been included in the application under section 8:
Provided that if within five years of the order declaring the debtor insolvent any property is acquired by, devolves on, or is declared by a Civil Court or is discovered to belong to, the insolvent debtor such property shall, on application made by a creditor to the Board, be available for distribution among the creditors of the debtor, to the extent of their debts, in such manner as the Board may direct.
(6) An order passed by a Board under sub-section (1) shall be embodied in an award to be made by the Board.

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