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Friday, April 11, 2014

Sec.319(3) of M.P.Municipalities Act - Exemption from issuing a notice in advance notice prior to filing to the Nagara palika - Suit for Declaration for title and injunction - Trial court and High court wrongly held that the plaintiff is entitled for exemption - Apex court held that the suit was filed for declaration of title coupled with permanent injunction. Respondent No.1 having claimed title, the suit cannot be termed to be suit for perpetual injunction alone. Along with the trial court and the appellate court, the High Court also failed to appreciate the aforesaid fact and also overlooked the valuable interest and right of public at large, to use the suit land which is a part of public street. Further, in absence of challenge to the notice of eviction issued by the appellant, it was not open to the trial court to decide the title merely because permanent injunction coupled with declaration of title was also sought for.= NAGAR PALIKA PARISHAD, MIHONA AND ANR. … APPELLANTS VERSUS RAMNATH AND ANR. … RESPONDENTS= 2014 (April.Part) judis.nic.in/supremecourt/filename=41405

   Sec.319(3) of M.P.Municipalities Act - Exemption from issuing a notice in advance notice prior to filing to the Nagara palika - Suit for Declaration for title and injunction - Trial court and High court wrongly held that the plaintiff is entitled for exemption - Apex court held that the  suit  was  filed  for  declaration  of  title  coupled  with  permanent injunction.  Respondent No.1  having  claimed  title,  the  suit  cannot  be termed to be suit for perpetual injunction alone.   Along with the trial court and the appellate court, the  High  Court also failed to  appreciate  the  aforesaid  fact  and  also  overlooked  the valuable interest and right of public at large, to use the suit  land  which is a part of public street.  Further, in absence of challenge to the  notice of eviction issued by the appellant, it was not open to the trial  court  to decide  the  title  merely  because  permanent   injunction   coupled   with declaration of title was also sought for.=

 The case of the appellant–Nagar  Palika  is  that  on  finding  that
respondent No.1 – plaintiff has made encroachment on a public road,  namely,
Khitoli Road, a notice under Section 187 of  the  M.P.  Municipalities  Act,
1961 (hereinafter referred o as “Act, 1961”) dated 26th November,  1982  was
issued  to  respondent  No.1–plaintiff  calling  upon  him  to  remove   the
encroachment from Khitoli Road at Mihona, District Bhind, M.P.  (hereinafter
referred to as “suit land”). 
Instead of complying with the aforesaid notices, respondent  No.1  –
plaintiff filed Civil Suit No.79/90 in the Court of 1st Civil Judge,  Class-
I, Lahar,  District  Bhind  for  declaration  of  his  title  and  permanent
injunction  for  restraining  the  appellants  from   interfering   in   his
possession over the  suit  land  contending  that  the  suit  land  was  his
ancestral property.
Nagara palika raised objection that the suit was  not
maintainable for want of notice under Section 319 of the Act, 1961.

 Whether  the  suit  filed  by  respondent  No.1   -   plaintiff   was
      maintainable for non-compliance of statutory requirement of notice  as
      contemplated by Section 319  of the Act, 1961.


7.      Section 319 of the Act, 1961 bars suits in  absence  of  notice  and
reads as follows:
           “Section 319-Bar of suit in absence of notice.-(1) No suit shall
           be instituted against any Council or any Councilor,  officer  or
           servant thereof or any person acting under the direction of  any
           such Council, Councilor, officer or servant for anything done or
           purporting to be done under this Act, until  the  expiration  of
           two months next after a notice, in writing, stating the cause of
           action, the name and place of abode of the  intending  plaintiff
           and the relief which he claims, has  been,  in  the  case  of  a
           Council delivered or left at its office, and, in the case of any
           such member, officer, servant or person as aforesaid,  delivered
           to him or left at his office or usual place of
           abode; and the plaint shall contain a statement that such notice
           has been delivered or left.


           (2)Every suit shall be dismissed unless it is instituted  within
           eight months from the date of the accrual of the  alleged  cause
           of action.


           (3)Nothing in this section shall be deemed to apply to any  suit
           instituted under Section 54 of the Specific Relief Act, 1877  (I
           of 1877).”



8.      Respondent No.1-plaintiff filed the suit for  declaration  of  title
and permanent injunction.  In view of bar of suit for declaration  of  title
in absence of notice under Section 319 the suit was not  maintainable.   The
Courts below wrongly held that the suit was perpetual injunction though  the
respondent No.1-plaintiff filed the suit for declaration of  title  and  for
permanent injunction.
9.      Respondent No.1-plaintiff cannot derive  advantage  of  sub  Section
(3) of Section 319 which stipulates non-application of the Section 319  when
the suit was instituted under Section 54 of the Specific  Relief  Act,  1877
(old provision) equivalent to Section 38 of the  Specific Relief  Act,  1963
and reads as follows:
           “Section 38.Perpetual injunction when granted.-(1)Subject to the
           other provisions contained in or referred to by this Chapter,  a
           perpetual injunction may be granted to the plaintiff to  prevent
           the breach of an obligation  existing  in  his  favour,  whether
           expressly or by implication.


           (2)When any such obligation  arises  from  contract,  the  Court
           shall be guided by the rules and provisions contained in Chapter-
           II.


           (3)When  the  defendant  invades  or  threatens  to  invade  the
           plaintiff’s right to, or enjoyment of, property, the  Court  may
           grant a perpetual injunction in the following cases, namely:


                 (a)where the defendant is trustee of the property  for  the
                 plaintiff;


                 (b)where there exists  no  standard  for  ascertaining  the
                 actual damage caused,  or  likely  to  be  causes,  by  the
                 invasion;


                 (c)where the invasion in such , that compensation in  money
                 would not afford adequate relief;


                 (d)  where  the  injunction  is  necessary  to  prevent   a
                 multiplicity of judicial proceedings.”



      The benefit aforesaid cannot derive by  Respondent  No.1-plaintiff  as
the  suit  was  filed  for  declaration  of  title  coupled  with  permanent
injunction.  Respondent No.1  having  claimed  title,  the  suit  cannot  be
termed to be suit for perpetual injunction alone.
10.     Along with the trial court and the appellate court, the  High  Court
also failed to  appreciate  the  aforesaid  fact  and  also  overlooked  the
valuable interest and right of public at large, to use the suit  land  which
is a part of public street.  Further, in absence of challenge to the  notice
of eviction issued by the appellant, it was not open to the trial  court  to
decide  the  title  merely  because  permanent   injunction   coupled   with
declaration of title was also sought for.
11.     In view of our finding, we set aside  the  impugned  judgment  dated
11th April, 2012 passed by the High Court  in  second  appeal  as  also  the
judgment and decree passed by  the  first  appellate  court  and  the  trial
court.  It will be open to the appellant to proceed in accordance with  law.
 The appeal is allowed with aforesaid observations.
2014 (April.Part) judis.nic.in/supremecourt/filename=41405
SUDHANSU JYOTI MUKHOPADHAYA, V. GOPALA GOWDA

                                                            REPORTABLE

                        IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA

                        CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO.  4454  OF 2014
                   (arising out of SLP(C)No.30146 of 2012)


NAGAR PALIKA PARISHAD,
MIHONA AND ANR.                               … APPELLANTS

                                   VERSUS

RAMNATH AND ANR.                                        … RESPONDENTS

                               J U D G M E N T

SUDHANSU JYOTI MUKHOPADHAYA, J.


        Leave granted.
2.      This appeal  has  been  preferred  by  the  appellants-Nagar  Palika
Parishad, Mihona (hereinafter referred to as  “Nagar  Palika”)  against  the
judgment dated 11th April, 2012 passed by the High Court of  Madhya  Pradesh
Bench at Gwalior in Second Appeal No.568 of 2009. By the  impugned  judgment
the High Court dismissed  the  Second  Appeal  and  affirmed  the  judgments
passed by the first appellate court and the trial court.
3.      The case of the appellant–Nagar  Palika  is  that  on  finding  that
respondent No.1 – plaintiff has made encroachment on a public road,  namely,
Khitoli Road, a notice under Section 187 of  the  M.P.  Municipalities  Act,
1961 (hereinafter referred o as “Act, 1961”) dated 26th November,  1982  was
issued  to  respondent  No.1–plaintiff  calling  upon  him  to  remove   the
encroachment from Khitoli Road at Mihona, District Bhind, M.P.  (hereinafter
referred to as “suit land”).  As respondent  No.1  –  plaintiff  refused  to
comply with the aforesaid notice and also failed to show any title over  the
encroached  land,  another  notice  was  issued  on  23rd  December,   1982,
intimating  respondent  No.1–plaintiff  that  if  the  encroachment  is  not
removed by him it shall be removed by the appellant, in  exercise  of  power
conferred under Section 109 read with Section 223 of the Act, 1961.
4.      Instead of complying with the aforesaid notices, respondent  No.1  –
plaintiff filed Civil Suit No.79/90 in the Court of 1st Civil Judge,  Class-
I, Lahar,  District  Bhind  for  declaration  of  his  title  and  permanent
injunction  for  restraining  the  appellants  from   interfering   in   his
possession over the  suit  land  contending  that  the  suit  land  was  his
ancestral property.  The aforesaid suit was contested by  the  appellant  by
filing written statement contending, inter alia, that the  suit  land  is  a
public  road  which  the  appellants  intend  to  make  a  Pakka  (Road)  in
consonance with the public policy and  public  interest  due  to  which  the
action for removal of encroachment has been taken and that the suit was  not
maintainable for want of notice under Section 319 of the Act, 1961.
5.      The trial court on hearing the parties by its  judgment  and  decree
dated  20th  August,  2008  decreed  the  suit  in  favour   of   respondent
No.1–plaintiff.  The trial court held that no notice under  Section  319  of
the Act, 1961 is required to be issued before filing a  suit  for  permanent
injunction. The aforesaid judgment was upheld by the first  appellate  court
by the judgment and decree dated 31st August, 2009 in C.A. No. 20/09.
6.      The second appeal preferred by the appellant was  dismissed  by  the
High Court though the appellant raised  one  of  the  following  substantial
questions of law:


      ?Whether  the  suit  filed  by  respondent  No.1   -   plaintiff   was
      maintainable for non-compliance of statutory requirement of notice  as
      contemplated by Section 319  of the Act, 1961.


7.      Section 319 of the Act, 1961 bars suits in  absence  of  notice  and
reads as follows:
           “Section 319-Bar of suit in absence of notice.-(1) No suit shall
           be instituted against any Council or any Councilor,  officer  or
           servant thereof or any person acting under the direction of  any
           such Council, Councilor, officer or servant for anything done or
           purporting to be done under this Act, until  the  expiration  of
           two months next after a notice, in writing, stating the cause of
           action, the name and place of abode of the  intending  plaintiff
           and the relief which he claims, has  been,  in  the  case  of  a
           Council delivered or left at its office, and, in the case of any
           such member, officer, servant or person as aforesaid,  delivered
           to him or left at his office or usual place of
           abode; and the plaint shall contain a statement that such notice
           has been delivered or left.


           (2)Every suit shall be dismissed unless it is instituted  within
           eight months from the date of the accrual of the  alleged  cause
           of action.


           (3)Nothing in this section shall be deemed to apply to any  suit
           instituted under Section 54 of the Specific Relief Act, 1877  (I
           of 1877).”



8.      Respondent No.1-plaintiff filed the suit for  declaration  of  title
and permanent injunction.  In view of bar of suit for declaration  of  title
in absence of notice under Section 319 the suit was not  maintainable.   The
Courts below wrongly held that the suit was perpetual injunction though  the
respondent No.1-plaintiff filed the suit for declaration of  title  and  for
permanent injunction.
9.      Respondent No.1-plaintiff cannot derive  advantage  of  sub  Section
(3) of Section 319 which stipulates non-application of the Section 319  when
the suit was instituted under Section 54 of the Specific  Relief  Act,  1877
(old provision) equivalent to Section 38 of the  Specific Relief  Act,  1963
and reads as follows:
           “Section 38.Perpetual injunction when granted.-(1)Subject to the
           other provisions contained in or referred to by this Chapter,  a
           perpetual injunction may be granted to the plaintiff to  prevent
           the breach of an obligation  existing  in  his  favour,  whether
           expressly or by implication.


           (2)When any such obligation  arises  from  contract,  the  Court
           shall be guided by the rules and provisions contained in Chapter-
           II.


           (3)When  the  defendant  invades  or  threatens  to  invade  the
           plaintiff’s right to, or enjoyment of, property, the  Court  may
           grant a perpetual injunction in the following cases, namely:


                 (a)where the defendant is trustee of the property  for  the
                 plaintiff;


                 (b)where there exists  no  standard  for  ascertaining  the
                 actual damage caused,  or  likely  to  be  causes,  by  the
                 invasion;


                 (c)where the invasion in such , that compensation in  money
                 would not afford adequate relief;


                 (d)  where  the  injunction  is  necessary  to  prevent   a
                 multiplicity of judicial proceedings.”



      The benefit aforesaid cannot derive by  Respondent  No.1-plaintiff  as
the  suit  was  filed  for  declaration  of  title  coupled  with  permanent
injunction.  Respondent No.1  having  claimed  title,  the  suit  cannot  be
termed to be suit for perpetual injunction alone.
10.     Along with the trial court and the appellate court, the  High  Court
also failed to  appreciate  the  aforesaid  fact  and  also  overlooked  the
valuable interest and right of public at large, to use the suit  land  which
is a part of public street.  Further, in absence of challenge to the  notice
of eviction issued by the appellant, it was not open to the trial  court  to
decide  the  title  merely  because  permanent   injunction   coupled   with
declaration of title was also sought for.
11.     In view of our finding, we set aside  the  impugned  judgment  dated
11th April, 2012 passed by the High Court  in  second  appeal  as  also  the
judgment and decree passed by  the  first  appellate  court  and  the  trial
court.  It will be open to the appellant to proceed in accordance with  law.
 The appeal is allowed with aforesaid observations.



                                                      ………………………………………………….J.
                                  (SUDHANSU JYOTI MUKHOPADHAYA)






                                                       ……………………………………………….J.
                                     (V. GOPALA GOWDA)


NEW DELHI;
APRIL 9, 2014.

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