Law of Contracts

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History of Contract in India

The Third Law commission of British India formed in 1861 under the stewardship of Chairman Sir John Romilly, with initial members as Sir Edward Ryan, R. Lowe, J.M. Macleod, Sir W. Erle (succeeded by Sir. W.M. James) and Justice Wills (succeeded by J. Henderson), had presented the report on contract law for India as Draft Contract Law (1866). The Draft Law was enacted as The Act 9 of 1872 on 25th April 1872 and the Indian Contract Act, 1872 came into force with effect from September 1, 1872. Before the enactment of the Indian Contract Act, 1872, there was no codified law for contract in India. In the Presidency Towns of Madras, Bombay and Calcutta law relating to contract was dealt with the Charter granted in 1726 by King George I to the East India Company. Thereafter in 1781, in the Presidency Towns, Act of Settlement passed by the British Government came into force. Act of Settlement required the Supreme Court of India that questions of inheritance and succession and all matters of contract and dealing between party and party should be determined in case of Hindu as per Hindu law and in case of Muslim as per Muslim law and when parties to a suit belonged to different persuasions, then the law of the defendant was to apply. In outside Presidency Towns matters with regard to contract was mainly dealt with English Contract Laws; the principle of justice, equity and good conscience was followed.

Development: The Act as enacted originally had 266 Sections, it had wide scope and included.

• General Principles of Law of Contract::::::::: 1 to 75 • Contract relating to Sale of Goods::::::::::::76 to 129 • Special kinds of Contracts
(includes indemnity, guarantee, bailment & pledge)::::125 to 238 • Contracts relating to Partnership::::::::::::239 to 266 Indian Contract Act embodied the simple and elementary rules relating to Sale of goods and partnership. The developments of modern business world found the provisions contained in the Indian Contract Act inadequate to deal with the new regulations or give effect to the new principles. Subsequently the provisions relating to the sale of goods and partnership contained in the Indian Contract Act were repealed respectively in the year 1930 and 1932 and new enactments namely Sale of Goods and Movables Act 1930 and Indian Partnership act 1932 were re-enacted. At present the Indian Contract Act includes:

• General Principles of Law of Contract:::::: 1 to 75
• Special kinds of Contracts (includes indemnity, guarantee, bailment & pledge)::::::::::::::::125 to 238 The law relating to contracts in India is contained in Indian Contract Act, 1872. The Act was passed by British India and is based on the principles of English Common Law. It is applicable to the All the States of India except the State of Jammu & Kashmir. It determines the circumstances in which promise made by the parties to a contract shall be legally binding on them. All of us enter into a number of contracts everyday knowingly or unknowingly. Each contract creates some right and duties upon the contracting parties. Indian contract deals with the enforcement of these rights and duties upon the parties in India.

|Contents | |1 History | |2 Development | |3 Definition | |4 Essential Elements of a Valid Contract | |5 Types of contracts | |6 Offer | |7 Acceptance | |8 Lawful consideration | |9 Competent To Contract...
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