The undisputed position of law states that, all the arrangements brought to
resolve the family disputes, by its members are governed by a special equity,
specific only to such family members. But, the Hon'ble bench of the Odisha HC,
chaired by Justice D.Dash, in the matter of Natabar Padhan and others v.
Lalita Padhan and another
[S.A. No.243 of 1989] hold that only the bona-fide
family arrangements, with fair & equitable distribution, are legally
The present case was originally filed by the plaintiff to recover the title,
interest and possession of the suit land which was earlier a joint family
property but was later upon a family arrangement given to Ghanashyam (plaintiff
The case was originally brought before the trial court, which dismissed the
case, thereby giving the decision in favor of the defendants. The matter was
then brought before lower appellate court; here the sub-ordinate judge altered
the judgment of the trial court and gave the decision in favor of the appellant.
The aggrieved party of the case then went before the Odisha HC u/s 100 of C.P.C.,
where it challenged the legality of the judgment passed by the lower appellate
Two main question of law that were framed by court for discussion, are produced
(a)If the lower appellate court committed serious illegality in holding that the
suit house was allotted to the share of Ghanashyam Padhan in view of the
admission of Ext.2 into evidence without objection in spite of the evidence of
P.Ws2, 3 and 4 to the effect that they are unable to say as to when item no.18
was included in Ext.2? and (b)If Ext.2 is admissible as a document of partition
without being registered?.
After examining all the documents and evidences forwarded in the trial court
and the lower appellate court, the court observed that:
… the view taken by the lower appellate court that Ext.2 is acceptable to judge
character as to ownership of the properties as stated under item no.18 therein
from that time onwards is right more particularly when the evidence as to
possession of the parties after Ext.2 is not so clarified in detail by the
defendants so as to negate plaintiffs claim.
The court further stated that the family arrangement, which was made bona fide
during the time of partition, is to be held justified, and hence enforceable.
The court even after hearing all the forwarded arguments of councils, remained
unsuccessful in answering the above stated question of laws, considering which
the lower appellate court gave its decision and hence the Hon'ble HC here
decided to restore the original decision of the trial court, helding
that, Resultantly, the appeal stands dismissed and in the facts and
circumstances, without cost.
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