4A. Power to confer jurisdiction on subordinate judicial officers and to transfer proceedings to such officers.-
1[4A. Power to confer jurisdiction on subordinate judicial officers and to transfer proceedings to such officers.—(1) The High Court may, by general or special order, empower any officer exercising original civil jurisdiction subordinate to a district court, or authorise the Judge of any District Court to empower any such officer subordinate to him, to dispose of any proceedings under this Act transferred to such officer under the provisions of this section.
2. The Judge of a district court may, by order in writing, transfer at any stage any proceeding under this Act pending in his Court for disposal to any officer subordinate to him empowered under sub-section (1).
3. The Judge of a district court may at any stage transfer to his own Court or to any officer subordinate to him empowered under sub-section (1) any proceeding under this Act pending in the Court of any other such officer.
4. When any proceedings are transferred under this section in any case in which a guardian has been appointed or declared, the Judge of the District Court may, by order in writing, declare that the Court of the Judge or officer to whom they are transferred shall, for all or any of the purpose of this Act, be deemed to the Court which appointed or declare the guardian.
(i) The term ‘guardian’ according to the section implies that it includes testamentary, certified, natural or de facto guardians too and not only statutory guardian; Abdul Karim v. Akhtari Bibi, AIR 1988 Ori 276.
(ii) The term ‘guardian’ does not necessarily imply that it has to be a natural person, even registered societies too can act as guardians in case of orphans.
(iii) The term guardian is used both by Hindus as well as Muslims and has nothing to do with their respective religions. A Muslim mother too can apply under section 25 of the Act for the custody of her child when the child is removed from her custody by the father who is the natural guardian like a Hindu mother can. A Muslim mother also has a right of Hizhat under the Mohamedan law; Abdul Karim v. Akhtari Bibi, AIR 1988 Ori 276.
(iv) The welfare of the minor child is of paramount consideration in the appointment of a guardian and Guardians and Wards Act, 1890 does not provide what the custody of child of any age should be with the mother only unlike section 6(a) of the Hindu Minority and Guardianship Act, 1956 which provides that the custody of child below five years of age should be with the mother only, because in some cases mother may be unfit to provide all the love, care, comfort for a child of such tender age; Raj Kumar Gupta v. Barbara Gupta, AIR 1989 Cal 165.
1. Ins. by Act 4 of 1936, sec. 3.