Division bench of the Apex court reviewed the Order of the Hon'ble High Court of
Karnataka in a Simpliciter Suit filed for Injunction to stay proceedings
without a prior order of Title
. The Apex Court held that a mere suit for
injunction Simpliciter is only maintainable when the Declaration of Title to
property is not under cloud of dispute, especially in cases of vacant lands.
remedy of Injunction Simpliciter against a trespasser or wrongdoer provided in
law under Civil Procedural Code 1908 Order 39 Rule 1 and 2 is
maintainable/applicable when the oral and documentary evidence
proves that the
property belongs to the Plaintiff.
The issue has been several times adjudicated
upon and tried to be brought up before this court, long back from 1936 when the Hon'ble Madras High Court laid down in its order that absence of prayer of
Declaration in a Simpliciter Suit does not affect a suit of permanent injunction
filed against the trespasser threatening to interfere with the lawful use of
property of the plaintiff.
The question that could not be addressed until
recently is, even though the court allowed the grant of Injunction in Simplicitor Suit but why could the court cannot do the same in a suit for
Declaration. The justification provided was that Court's power to grant
Injunction under Section 151 Order 39cannot be doubted or disputed as in
this case 1st respondent is seeking an injunction without seeking a declaration.
There is any amount of difference between a suit for declaration and a suit for
injunction Simplicitor without declaration. the Apex Court's decision in this
regard was that it could exercise its inherent power in a suit for declaration
of title simpliciter provided under Order 39, Rules 1 and 2 or even in Section
151 C.P.C to grant Ad Interim Injunction pending suit. (Laid down in case of Rajnibai
v. kamla Devi and Ors
The reason behind this differential treatment lies
in the very nature of the suit filed. A Simpliciter suit filed for Declaration
of title is separate and a Injunction Simpliciter filed to prevent the
trespassers unlawful use, damaging conduct and threats to disposes the plaintiff
of his de jure rights granted in law is for a different cause.
Decree under law is provided whereby the plaintiff has entitlement to ask for
his rights, benefits, property, good interest vested by law unto him. An
Injunction can be granted When:
Plaintiff is in lawful or peaceful possession
of his property and such possession is interfered or threatened people or group
of people, a suit for an injunction simpliciter will lie.
A analogy of the term Injunction
provides it is a equitable and discretionary relief as it is
not a code or principle that needs a strict compliance but a alternative remedy
until the proceedings have not been dismissed or stayed until a solution to the
problem is present. It can be called a makeshift remedy
for a temporary
period. In a case where the actual owner is dispossessed of his property, he can
ask the court to stop the trespasser to Misuse his home until a finality to
proceedings has been reached to avoid loss of habitat and a security of living
for his family so they can make preparations as needed.
The Apex court in its judgement interpreted the case Anathula Sudhakar(supra) where the title came
under dispute and maintainability of the injunction suit now relies upon the
contention of the plaintiff that he will put forward by filing a suit for
Declaration of Title. The principle reiterated must be read in its entirety to
The principle of this case were explained and relied upon to simply claim that a
disputed title requires the plaintiff to file his suit for Declaration and
subsequently file a Injunction to claim relief. A title in dispute makes the the
plaintiff unable to secure his position as the owner.
It can be inferred from
the judgement that there are 3 summarized views:
- When the owner is in complete possession of his home and Title. A
trespasser tries to interfere or threatens to interfere with use of
property. A Injunction Simpliciter suit will suffice with the strong stand of the Owner.
- The possession of land is under dispute (absence of residence, Adverse
possession by a third party) Relief of possession mandatory to file
Injunction. Hence they should file Suit for possession and seek in addition
- The possession is lawful, title under dispute from assertion of
defendant, threat of dispossession remedy by way of injunction not possible.
Sue the defendant for claim to Title of the land. Hence, when title and
possession under cloud of dispute, file a suit for Declaration, possession
Position of the same has been reaffirmed in Jharkhand State Housing Board v.
Didar Singh and Ors
. where the Defendant by relying upon the land acquisition
proceedings and the possession certificate successfully shed away the title of
the Plaintiff and in those circumstances Plaintiff ought to have sought for the
relief of declaration. The Courts below erroneously caused delay to file suit
11. It is well settled by a plethora of Judgments of this Court that in each
and every case where the Defendant disputes the title of the Plaintiff it is not
necessary that in all those cases Plaintiff has to seek the relief of
declaration. A suit for Mere Injunction will not lie when the opposite party
raises a legitable dispute with regard to title but when he raises a cloud over
the title of the Plaintiff, then necessarily in those circumstances, Plaintiff
cannot maintain a suit for bare injunction.
Evidently after examining these plethora of judgement one must understand the
intent behind this legislation. This Dispute doesn't only involve interference
or trespass upon property but also includes the way of integrating
the ownership of land holdings that are held by different person in different
names to amass huge wealth through wrong means. By way of this legislation
another cannot register the land in his name and be removed from it upon the
pressure of a bigger bhumidar.
Every person will own land in his own name, and
be self owner of the land he works and reaps. Large enterprises cannot hide
their huge wealth to evade Taxes as every piece of land will have to be in their
Legal name or branch name. Hence timely taxation will occur. It acts and
functions as a regulatory principle to monitor and prevent concentration of
landholdings in one hand.
- Muthayyan Swaminatha Sastrial v. S. Narayanama Swaminatha Sastrial, 1936
SCCOnline Mad 345.
- Cultor Food Science Inc. v. Nicholas Piramal India Ltd. and Ors, 2002(2)
- Civil Procedural Code 1908.
- 1996 2 SCC 225.
- (2019)17SC C 692
Award Winning Article Is Written By: Mr.Kanishka Pandey
Authentication No: OT36463034162-11-1021