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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Amendment of Preliminary Decree Sec.152 C.P.C.& Or.18, rule 2 of C.P.C. - suit for partition to the property of step brother against the deceased real sister and against the legal heirs of his real brother and against purchaser - trial court dismissed the suit as time barred and as the defendant 12 purchaser perfected his title - High court set aside the decree of lower court and allowed the appeal and passed preliminary decree declaring that plaintiff is entitled for 1/4th share and legal heirs of his real brother are entitled to 1/4th share and legal heirs of real sister entitled to 1/2 share - amendment petitions filed High court allowed the same - objection that the defendants never asked for partition and separate possession of their extents - Apex court held that under or.18, rule 2 of C.P.C. - it is the duty of court to allot shares of each and every party share in a partition suit and as such dismissed the appeal = CIVIL APPEAL NOs.2352-2354 OF 2008 SRIHARI (DEAD) THROUGH LR. SMT. CH.NIVEDITHA REDDY .…APPELLANT VERSUS SYED MAQDOOM SHAH & ORS. ……RESPONDENTS = 2014 - Sept. Month - http://judis.nic.in/supremecourt/filename=41922

Amendment of Preliminary Decree Sec.152 C.P.C. & Or.18, rule 2 of  C.P.C. - suit for partition to the property of step brother against the deceased real sister and against the legal heirs of his real brother and against purchaser - trial court dismissed the suit as time barred and as the defendant 12 purchaser perfected his title - High court set aside the decree of lower court and allowed the appeal and passed preliminary decree declaring that plaintiff is entitled for 1/4th share and legal heirs of his real brother are entitled to 1/4th share and legal heirs of real sister entitled to 1/2 share - amendment petitions filed High court allowed the same - objection that the defendants never asked for partition and separate possession of their extents - Apex court held that  under or.18, rule 2 of C.P.C. - it is the duty of court to allot shares of each and every party share in a partition suit and as such dismissed the appeal  = 

whereby  the
      High Court - exercising powers under Section 152 of the
      Code of Civil Procedure,1908 (hereinafter referred as ‘the Code’), has
      allowed the applications, and 
directed  that  the  preliminary  decree
      passed in A.S. No. 734 of 1991,  be  amended  
allotting  and  dividing
      half share of Syed Makdoom Shah (defendant  No.11)  and  
Syed  Hussain
      Shah in the suit schedule property in addition to 1/4th share of legal
      heirs of plaintiff Khadar Nawaz Khan (since dead) and 
1/4th  share  of
      the legal heirs of defendant Feroz Khan (died on 22.1.1978). =

Trial court dismissed the suit - where as High court in appeal decreed the suit
After hearing the parties, the  Appellate  Court  re-appreciated
      the evidence and came to the conclusion and observed as under:
               
“It is  not  disputed  that  the  original  owner  of  the
              property is one Qamaruddin Ali  Khan  and  from  him,  Khader
              Hussain Khan purchased the same.
The  appellant  late  Feroz
              Khan and Shahzadi Bee are the  step  brother  and  sister  of
              Khader Hussain Khan.
 It  is  also  not  disputed  that  the
              properties are matrooka properties.
It is also not  disputed
              that Khader Hussain Khan died as a  bachelor  leaving  behind
              him Shahzadi Bee, his sister and step  brothers,  Feroz  Khan
              and the appellant Khader Nawaz  Khan.  
After  the  death  of
              Khader Hussain Khan, the only heirs are late Feroz  Khan  and
              Khadar Nawaz Khan i.e. the appellant and Shahazadi  Bee.  
It
              is also not disputed that the suit properties being  matrooka
              properties, under Muslim Laws, the property devolves  on  all
              the three heirs of Khader Hussain Khan  viz.,  Shahzadi  Bee,
              Feroz Khan and Khadar Nawaz Khan.
When once  the  properties
              devolved on these three persons, who are  the  successors  of
              Khader Hussain Khan, they are entitled to claim from  out  of
              the shares in accordance with Muslim Law  and  they  are  co-
              owners of the property.
It is not disputed that when  a  co-
              heir is found to be in possession of the  properties,  it  is
              presumed to be on behalf of the  other  co-owners  and  joint
              title and the possession of one co-heir is to  be  considered
              in Law as possession of all the  co-heirs.  
The  co-heir  in
              possession cannot render his possession adverse to the  other
              co-heirs not in possession.
Therefore, on the death of Khader
              Hussain Khan, late Feroz  Khan,  Khadar  Nawaz  Khan,  Khadar
              Nawaz Khan the appellant, Shahzadi Bee, who succeeded as  co-
              heirs, are entitled to joint  possession  and  even  assuming
              that Feroz Khan  was  in  possession  of  the  property,  his
              possession is on behalf of  Shahzadi  Bee  and  Khadar  Nawaz
              Khan, who are the co-heirs/co-owners along with him.
At this
              stage, it is relevant to refer Ex.A-2 which was relied on  in
              the Judgment in CCCA No.142 of 1976 filed by  Krishna  Murthy
              against late Feroz Khan and  the  1st  respondent.
 In  this
              appeal, a reference was made to  the  succession  certificate
              granted to late Feroz Khan and Shahzadi  Bee,  the  appellant
              i.e. Khadar Nawaz Khan.
The relevant portion has been marked as Ex.A-2 in the present
              suit.  It reads: “Letter No. 745 dated  7th  Tir  1356  Fasli
              shows that  the  succession  for  three  survey  numbers  was
              sanctioned in the name of the plaintiff.
His younger brother
              Khadar Nawaz Khan and sister Shahzadi Bee are  shown  as  co-
              sharers (Shikami)”.  From a reading of Ex.A-2,  it  is  clear
              that the possession obtained under Muslim Law was  recognized
              by granting succession certificate in favour of all the three
              co-heirs.
The learned Judge, forgetting  the  legal  position  obtained
              under the Muslim Law and relying on various  documents,  held
              that late Feroz Khan was the exclusive possessor and pattadar
              of the suit land.
The documents on which he relied are Ex.B-
              7, Pahani Patrika for the year 1970-71, Ex.B-23 Khasra Pahani
              for the year 1954-55, Ex.B-24 certified copy of Faisal Patti,
              Ex.B-25 certified copy of Pahani Pathrika and Ex.B-26 to B-26
              certified copies  of  Pahani  Pathrikas.  
On  the  basis  of
              various entries made in  the  revenue  records,  the  learned
              Judge held that late Feroz Khan was in  exclusive  possession
              of the property.
 It is true that in all the entries  in  the
              revenue   records,   late   Feroz   Khan   and   his    legal
              representatives  and  the  respondents  were  shown  as   the
              possessors of the land. 
However, they are only entries  made
              in the revenue  records.   In  other  words,  these  are  the
              entries relating to  mutation  proceedings  effected  on  the
              death of the original owner and also on the  death  of  Feroz
              Khan and after purchase by the defendant no.12”.

the  Appellate
      Court held that merely for the reason that the plaintiff did not raise
      any objection and did  not  participate  in  various  proceedings,  it
      cannot be said that he stood  ousted  from  the  co-ownership  in  the
      property inherited from Khader  Hussain  Khan.  
The  Appellate  Court
      further held that in fact plaintiff appears to have  no  knowledge  of
      the proceedings in which he was not a party.  It further observed that
      the joint possession over the land in suit  of  other  co-sharers  was
      also with the plaintiff.
The Appellate Court after holding  that  the
      property was jointly  owned  by  the  parties  decreed  the  suit  for
      partition vide its judgment and decree dated 25.1.1999.


      9.    It appears that three applications  viz.  A.S.M.P.  No.11880  of
      2004, A.S.M.P. No. 1098 of 2005 and  A.S.M.P.  No.1099  of  2005  were
      moved on behalf of the defendants for declaration of their  shares  in
      the preliminary decree passed in A.S No. 734 of  1991  arisen  out  of
      Suit No.471 of 1987. 
The High Court  by exercising powers contained in
      Section 151, and Section 152  read  with  Section  153  of  the  Code,
      disposed of these applications vide order  dated  21.4.2005  which  is
      challenged before us.
The High Court  by  its  order  dated  21.4.2005
      allowed the above mentioned applications and directed that half  share
      belonging to Syed  Maqdoom  Shah  and  Syed  Hussain  Shah  (heirs  of
      Shahzadi Bee), 1/4th share of Basheer Khatoon,  Quadir  Hussain  Khan,
      Rabia Khan, Razia Moiuddin, Dr. Masood Nawaz and Mohammad  Yousuf  Ali
      Khan (heirs of Khadar Nawaz Khan), and 1/4th share of  Habib  Khatoon,
      Moin Khatoon, Zehra Khatoon, Tehera Khatoon, Sughra  Sameena  Khatoon,
      Kaneez  Fatima  Khatoon,   Butool   Khatoon,    Aysha   Khatoon    and
      Khaderalikhan (heirs of Feroz Khan) be partitioned.


Whether the High Court has acted within the scope of  Section  152  of
      the Code or not, we have to see as  to  what  were  the  pleadings  of
      parties, what was the decree passed, and what was the correction  made
      in it. =

15. The relevant part in paragraph 12 of the plaint of Original  Suit  No.
      471 of 1987 filed by Khader Nawaz Khan for partition, reads as under:
           
              “     Hence it  is  prayed  that,  kindly  the  suit  of  the
              plaintiff be decreed as follows:


                   a)  A  preliminary  decree  be  passed   declaring   the
                      plaintiff is entitled for 1/4th share in the matrooka
                      properties i.e.  land  Survey  Nos.  41,  42  and  43
                      admeasuring  Ac  49-24  guntas  situated  at  Kokapet
                      Village, Rajendranagar Revenue  Mandal,  RR  District
                      and a Commissioner  be  appointed  for  partition  be
                      delivered to the  plaintiff  to  the  extent  of  his
                      share, if due to any legal hitch the court finds that
                      the property is not partition able then the  property
                      be put in auction and sale proceeds be  paid  to  the
                      plaintiff to the extent of his  1/4th  share  in  the
                      interest of justice.
                   b) Cost of the suit to be awarded;
                   c) Any other relief or reliefs which  the  plaintiff  is
                      legally entitled to the same”.

      16.    Defendant no. 11 Syed Maqdoom Shah (respondent  No.1  in  these
      appeals) at the end of para 12 of his written statement,  has  pleaded
      and  prayed as under:
             “Hence it is prayed that the suit of plaintiff may  be  decreed
             along with the share of defendant no.11  as  shown  under  para
             no.6.  Further the amount of Rs.2,082/- spent by the  defendant
             no. 11 during last  28 years as shown above at para no.  7  and
             it may be decreed from the share of  the  plaintiff  and  other
             defendants or otherwise  give  4  acres  of  land  in  lieu  of
             Rs.2,182/- from the share of the plaintiff and other defendants
             in addition to his own share to meet the ends of justice”.

           Para 6 of which reference is given in above quoted para as
      pleaded by defendant no.11 reads as under:
             “The shares ascertained as given by the  plaintiff  under  para
             (6) are correct”.


    17        In para 6 of the plaint, shares are mentioned as under:


             “ 6)   That, the shares of the parties are as follows:


             The defendants No. 10 and 11 are entitled for half share to the
             extent of their mother Shahzadi Bee.


             The plaintiff  is  entitled  for  1/4th  share  in  the  entire
             property.


             The defendant no. 1 to 9 are entitled for 1/4th share only”.

    18.      Now we re-produce the last sentence  of  judgment  and  order
      passed by the Appellate Court – High Court of Andhra Pradesh in  first
      appeal A.S. No. 734 of 1991 whereby suit for partition is decreed –
             “The suit is accordingly decreed and  appeal  is  allowed  with
             costs”.

    19.    By the impugned order dated 21.4.2005 exercising  powers  under
      Section 152 of the Code, the First Appellate Court has now directed as
      under:
             “Accordingly, for the reasons stated above, these  applications
             are allowed and the decree  in  A.S.  No.  734  of  1991  dated
             25.1.1996 is directed to be amended allotting and dividing half
             share in the suit schedule property to the petitioners 1 and 2,
             one-fourth share to respondents 1 to 6  herein  and  one-fourth
             share to respondents 7 to 15 herein.  There shall be  no  order
             as to costs”.

   20.   Had the appellate court, not decreed the suit with discussion of
      evidence after rejecting the plea of the defendant  No.12  as  to  his
      claim of ownership, and had the defendants 1 to  11  not  pleaded  for
      separation of their shares with admission of share of the plaintiff as
      decreed by the Appellate Court , it could have been said that the High
      Court erred in declaring shares of the plaintiff or the defendants  by
      resorting to Section 152 of the Code.
 But in the present  case  since
      there is  a clear finding of shares of the parties in the judgment and
      order dated 25.1.1996,  as  such  by  clarifying  the  decree  by  the
      impugned order, in our opinion the High Court has committed no mistake
      of law.
In this connection, we would like to re-produce sub-rule  (2)
      of Rule 18 of Order XX of the Code, which reads as under:
             “18. Decree in suit  for  partition  of  property  or  separate
             possession of a share therein --
             Where the Court passes a decree
             for the partition of property or for the separate possession of
             a share therein, then,--
                 xxx      xxx           xxx        xxx
              (2) if and in so far as  such  decree  relates  to  any  other
             immovable property or to movable property, the  Court  may,  if
             the partition or separation cannot be conveniently made without
             further inquiry, pass a preliminary decree declaring the rights
             of the several parties, interested in the property  and  giving
             such further directions as may be required”.

       Above quoted sub-rule clearly indicates that in the preliminary decree
      not only the right of the plaintiff but rights and interests of others
      can also be declared.
      21.   At the end, we would also like to refer the case of  Shub  Karan
      Bubna alias Shub Karan vs. Sita Saran Bubna and Others  (2009)  9  SCC
      689 wherein it is explained that “partition” is  a  redistribution  or
      adjustment  of  pre-existing  rights,   among   co-owners/coparceners,
      resulting in a division of land or other properties  jointly  held  by
      them into different lots or  portions  and  delivery  thereof  to  the
      respective allottees. The effect  of such division is that  the  joint
      ownership is terminated and the respective  shares  vest  in  them  in
      severalty.
      22.      This Court has earlier also reiterated in U.P.SRTC vs. Imtiaz
      Hussain (2006) 1 SCC 380 has reiterated  that the basis  of  provision
      of Section 152 of the Code is found on the maxim 'actus curiae neminem
      gravabit' i.e. an act of Court shall prejudice no  man.  
As  such  an
      unintentional mistake of the Court which may prejudice  the  cause  of
      any party must be rectified.
However, this  does  not  mean  that  the
      Court is allowed to go into the merits of the case to alter or add  to
      the terms of the original decree or to give a finding which  does  not
      exist in the body of the judgment sought to be corrected.
      23.   For the reasons as discussed above, we  do  not  find  force  in
      these appeals which are  liable  to  be  dismissed.  Accordingly,  the
      appeals are dismissed.  No order as to costs.


2014 - Sept. Month - http://judis.nic.in/supremecourt/filename=41922 REPORTABLE



                 IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA

                 CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION

                  CIVIL APPEAL NOs.2352-2354 OF 2008



      SRIHARI     (DEAD) THROUGH LR.
      SMT. CH.NIVEDITHA REDDY                    .…APPELLANT

                       VERSUS




       SYED MAQDOOM SHAH   & ORS.  ……RESPONDENTS




                             J U D G M E N T



      PRAFULLA C.PANT,J.




      1.    All  these  three   appeals  are  directed  against  the  common
      judgment and order dated 21.4.2005 passed by the High Court of  Andhra
      Pradesh in A.S.M.P. No.11880 of  2004, A.S.M.P. No. 1098 of  2005  and
      A.S.M.P. No.1099 of 2005 (moved in A.S. No. 734 of 1991)  whereby  the
      High Court                  exercising powers under Section 152 of the
      Code of Civil Procedure,1908 (hereinafter referred as ‘the Code’), has
      allowed the applications, and directed  that  the  preliminary  decree
      passed in A.S. No. 734 of 1991,  be  amended  allotting  and  dividing
      half share of Syed Makdoom Shah (defendant  No.11)  and  Syed  Hussain
      Shah in the suit schedule property in addition to 1/4th share of legal
      heirs of plaintiff Khadar Nawaz Khan (since dead) and 1/4th  share  of
      the legal heirs of defendant Feroz Khan (died on 22.1.1978).


      2.    Brief facts of the case are that one  Qamaruddin  Ali  Khan  was
      original owner and pattadar of agricultural land bearing S.Nos. 41  to
      43 situated in Village Kokapet.  The  land  was  purchased  by  Khadar
      Hussain Khan through a registered sale deed,  who  died  in  the  year
      1942.  Khadar Hussain Khan died  issueless  as  an  unmarried  person,
      leaving behind his real sister Shahzadi  Bee  and  two  step  brothers
      namely Feroz Khan and Khadar Nawaz Khan (plaintiff).   Khadar  Hussain
      Khan remained in possession  and  enjoyed  the  property  in  suit  as
      absolute owner till his death in the year 1942 (year 1352 Fasli).   It
      is pleaded by the plaintiff that after death of  Khadar  Hussain  Khan
      the property was succeeded by his real sister Shahzadi  Bee,  and  two
      step brothers namely Feroz Khan (died on 22.1.1978)  and Khadar  Nawaz
      Khan (plaintiff).  On the death of Feroz Khan in the  year  1978,  his
      share is inherited by his widow Habib  Khatoon  (Defendant  No.1)  and
      children Moin  Khatoon  (Defendant  No.2),  Zehra  Khatoon  (Defendant
      No.3),  Tehera  Khatoon  (Defendant  No.4),  Sughra  Sameena   Khatoon
      (Defendant No.5), Kaneez  Fatima  Khatoon  (Defendant  No.6),   Butool
      Khatoon  (Defendant  No.7),   Aysha  Khatoon  (Defendant   No.8)   and
      Khaderalikhan (Defendant No.9).  A suit  (O.S.No.  471  of  1987)  was
      instituted by plaintiff  Khadar Nawaz Khan for partition of his  1/4th
      share from plot S. Nos. 41 to 43 measuring area Ac.49.24 gts  situated
      in aforesaid village Kokapet.   It is further pleaded by the plaintiff
      that after death of Feroz Khan, plaintiff and defendant nos. 1  to  11
      are in joint possession of the property.  It is alleged  by  him  that
      defendant no. 12 (Srihari) had no concern with the  property  in  suit
      but he is trying to claim right over the property on the basis of some
      document said  to  have  been  executed  by  one  of  the  co-sharers.
      Therefore the plaintiff  felt that he is unable to enjoy his property,
      in joint possession with the original co-sharers as such he filed suit
      for  partition of his 1/4th share.


      3.    Defendant Nos. 1 to 9 and defendant No. 11 in substance admitted
      the case of the plaintiff.(Defendant  No.10  during  the  pendency  of
      proceeding has died and his heirs are on record.)   Defendant  No.  11
      filed his written statement and defendant Nos.1 to 9 adopted the same.
       It is admitted to defendant Nos.1 to 9  and  defendant  no.  11  that
      after the death of Khadar Hussain Khan, the property in suit  devolved
      and was inherited by  his  real  sister  Shahzadi  Bee  and  two  step
      brothers namely Feroz Khan and Khadar Nawaz Khan.   However,  mutation
      was done in the name of Feroz Khan being  elder  male  member  in  the
      family, and names of Shahzadi Bee and Khadar  Nawaz  Khan  were  shown
      ‘shikmi’.  It is further pleaded by the aforesaid defendants  that  on
      the death of Feroz Khan on 22.1.1978, defendant  Nos.  1  to  9  (i.e.
      widow and children of the deceased) inherited  his  share.   Defendant
      No.11  is the son of Shahzadi  Bee  (real  sister  of  Khadar  Hussain
      Khan).  It is also admitted by the aforesaid defendants that defendant
      No.12 Srihari had no concern  with  the  property  in  suit.    It  is
      further pleaded by aforesaid defendants (Nos.1 to 11) that the land in
      question  is  to  be  partitioned  between  the  plaintiffs  and   the
      defendants.


      4.    Defendant No.12 Srihari, filed his  separate  written  statement
      and contested the suit.  Denying the allegations made in  the  plaint,
      he pleaded that the suit property is  not  joint  family  property  of
      plaintiff and the defendant Nos. 1 to 11. He further pleaded that  the
      plaintiff has filed the suit in collusion with defendant Nos.1 to  11.
      However, defendant no.12 admitted that the property in suit originally
      belonged to Qamaruddin Ali Khan which was purchased by Khadar  Hussain
      Khan through registered sale deed, and for  valid  consideration.   He
      (defendant No.12) pleaded in his written statement that on  the  death
      of Khadar Hussain Khan, his step brother Feroz Khan (husband of  Habib
      Khatoon defendant No.1 and father of defendant nos. 2 to 9)  inherited
      the property by virtue of Succession Certificate No. 812 of 1357 Fasli
      issued by Director of Settlements.  It is pleaded by  defendant  no.12
      that Feroz Khan perfected his title over the land  in  suit  being  in
      exclusive possession as an absolute owner in the year 1965-66.  It  is
      pointed out that there had been some litigation under Section  145  of
      Code of Criminal Procedure between Firoz Khan and one  Krishna  Murthy
      but the same was closed. It is also pleaded by  defendant  no.12  that
      Feroz Khan thereafter instituted a suit (O.S. No. 31 of 1966)  in  the
      Court of IIIrd Additional Judge, City Civil Court,  Hyderabad  against
      Krishna Murthy for injunction which was renumbered as O.S.No.  512  of
      1973  in  the  Court  of  Vth  Additional  Judge,  City  Civil  Court,
      Hyderabad.  In the said suit Feroz Khan (husband of defendant No.1 and
      father of defendant nos. 2 to 9)  entered  into  settlement,  and  the
      entire land of S.Nos. 42 and 43 and portion of S.41  vested  with  the
      defendant no.12.  It is further pleaded  that  in  pursuance  of  said
      settlement, defendant no.12 was impleaded  as  second  plaintiff  with
      Feroz Khan (plaintiff no.1 of Suit No. 512 of 1973).   Finally,  Feroz
      Khan who was in need of money offered to sell land measuring  Ac.18.25
      gts of S.No.43 and executed agreement of sale on 23.3.1973.  Said suit
      No. 512 of 1973 was disposed of by IVth Additional Judge,  City  Civil
      Court, Hyderabad holding that defendant No.12 (who was plaintiff  No.2
      in suit No. 512 of 1973) and Feroz Khan (plaintiff No.1 of said  suit)
      were the owners of the land.  Aggrieved by said  judgment  and  decree
      dated 30.9.1976, Krishna Murthy (defendant  of  said  case)  filed  an
      appeal No. CCA 142 of 1976 in the High Court.  The  legal  proceedings
      referred above were finally decided in favour of the vendor.   In  the
      second round of litigation, defendant No.12 filed O.S.No.164  of  1981
      before Vth Additional Judge, City Civil Court, Hyderabad for permanent
      injunction restraining defendant nos. 1 to 9,  and  present  plaintiff
      from selling or otherwise disposing of the land  covered  by  S.43  of
      Kokapet Village, except to the defendant no.12 (who was  plaintiff  of
      Suit No. 164 of 1981).  Present defendant nos.1 to  9  contested  Suit
      No. 164 of 1981  and  the  same  was  decreed  in  favour  of  present
      defendant no.12, and the defendants of said suit were restrained  from
      transferring the suit land to third  party.   Aggrieved  by  the  said
      judgment and decree, present  defendant  nos.  1  to  9  filed  appeal
      bearing No. AS 66 of  1984  before  Chief  Judge,  City  Civil  Court,
      Hyderabad which was dismissed by the said Court  on  27.11.1984.   The
      appeal filed by Krishna Murthy bearing CCCA No. 142 of 1976  was  also
      dismissed by the High Court on 11.12.1985. Thereafter,  defendant  No.
      12 filed Original Suit No. 150 of 1986  for  specific  performance  of
      agreement of sale dated 23.3.1973 in  respect  of  land  Ac.18.25  gts
      covered by S.No.43 of Village Kokapet.  In pursuance to the  order  in
      said case possession of the land in question was jointly delivered  to
      defendant no. 12 and defendant nos. 1 to 9  by  the  Bailiff  and  the
      suit was decreed by M.M. West on  2.11.1987  directing  the  defendant
      nos. 1 to  9 to execute  sale  deed  in  favour  of  defendant  No.12.
      Present plaintiff Khadar Nawaz Khan never attempted to  get  impleaded
      in the aforesaid litigations.  It is alleged by  the  defendant  no.12
      that after colluding with defendant no. 1 to defendant no.9, plaintiff
      has filed the present suit for partition to deprive defendant no.12 of
      his rights.


      5.    The trial court on the basis of the  pleadings  of  the  parties
      framed as many as eight  issues,  and  after  recording  evidence  and
      hearing the parties gave the finding that  Feroz  Khan  had  perfected
      title over the land in suit, and the  plaintiff  is  not  entitled  to
      partition. On the issue of limitation, the trial court held  that  the
      suit is barred by limitation.  With the  above  findings  trial  court
      (Additional Subordinate Judge/R.R. District) dismissed the  suit  vide
      judgment and decree dated 16.10.1990.
      6.      Aggrieved by the judgment and decree dated 16.10.1990 in  O.S.
      No. 471 of 1987, the plaintiff  Khadar  Nawaz  Khan  filed  an  appeal
      before the High Court  of  Judicature  at  Andhra  Pradesh  which  was
      registered as appeal No. 734 of 1991.
      7.    After hearing the parties, the  Appellate  Court  re-appreciated
      the evidence and came to the conclusion and observed as under:
                 “It is  not  disputed  that  the  original  owner  of  the
              property is one Qamaruddin Ali  Khan  and  from  him,  Khader
              Hussain Khan purchased the same.  The  appellant  late  Feroz
              Khan and Shahzadi Bee are the  step  brother  and  sister  of
              Khader Hussain Khan.   It  is  also  not  disputed  that  the
              properties are matrooka properties.  It is also not  disputed
              that Khader Hussain Khan died as a  bachelor  leaving  behind
              him Shahzadi Bee, his sister and step  brothers,  Feroz  Khan
              and the appellant Khader Nawaz  Khan.   After  the  death  of
              Khader Hussain Khan, the only heirs are late Feroz  Khan  and
              Khadar Nawaz Khan i.e. the appellant and Shahazadi  Bee.   It
              is also not disputed that the suit properties being  matrooka
              properties, under Muslim Laws, the property devolves  on  all
              the three heirs of Khader Hussain Khan  viz.,  Shahzadi  Bee,
              Feroz Khan and Khadar Nawaz Khan.  When once  the  properties
              devolved on these three persons, who are  the  successors  of
              Khader Hussain Khan, they are entitled to claim from  out  of
              the shares in accordance with Muslim Law  and  they  are  co-
              owners of the property.  It is not disputed that when  a  co-
              heir is found to be in possession of the  properties,  it  is
              presumed to be on behalf of the  other  co-owners  and  joint
              title and the possession of one co-heir is to  be  considered
              in Law as possession of all the  co-heirs.   The  co-heir  in
              possession cannot render his possession adverse to the  other
              co-heirs not in possession. Therefore, on the death of Khader
              Hussain Khan, late Feroz  Khan,  Khadar  Nawaz  Khan,  Khadar
              Nawaz Khan the appellant, Shahzadi Bee, who succeeded as  co-
              heirs, are entitled to joint  possession  and  even  assuming
              that Feroz Khan  was  in  possession  of  the  property,  his
              possession is on behalf of  Shahzadi  Bee  and  Khadar  Nawaz
              Khan, who are the co-heirs/co-owners along with him.  At this
              stage, it is relevant to refer Ex.A-2 which was relied on  in
              the Judgment in CCCA No.142 of 1976 filed by  Krishna  Murthy
              against late Feroz Khan and  the  1st  respondent.   In  this
              appeal, a reference was made to  the  succession  certificate
              granted to late Feroz Khan and Shahzadi  Bee,  the  appellant
              i.e. Khadar Nawaz Khan.
              The relevant portion has been marked as Ex.A-2 in the present
              suit.  It reads: “Letter No. 745 dated  7th  Tir  1356  Fasli
              shows that  the  succession  for  three  survey  numbers  was
              sanctioned in the name of the plaintiff.  His younger brother
              Khadar Nawaz Khan and sister Shahzadi Bee are  shown  as  co-
              sharers (Shikami)”.  From a reading of Ex.A-2,  it  is  clear
              that the possession obtained under Muslim Law was  recognized
              by granting succession certificate in favour of all the three
              co-heirs.


              The learned Judge, forgetting  the  legal  position  obtained
              under the Muslim Law and relying on various  documents,  held
              that late Feroz Khan was the exclusive possessor and pattadar
              of the suit land.  The documents on which he relied are Ex.B-
              7, Pahani Patrika for the year 1970-71, Ex.B-23 Khasra Pahani
              for the year 1954-55, Ex.B-24 certified copy of Faisal Patti,
              Ex.B-25 certified copy of Pahani Pathrika and Ex.B-26 to B-26
              certified copies  of  Pahani  Pathrikas.   On  the  basis  of
              various entries made in  the  revenue  records,  the  learned
              Judge held that late Feroz Khan was in  exclusive  possession
              of the property.  It is true that in all the entries  in  the
              revenue   records,   late   Feroz   Khan   and   his    legal
              representatives  and  the  respondents  were  shown  as   the
              possessors of the land.  However, they are only entries  made
              in the revenue  records.   In  other  words,  these  are  the
              entries relating to  mutation  proceedings  effected  on  the
              death of the original owner and also on the  death  of  Feroz
              Khan and after purchase by the defendant no.12”.


      8.    After further discussing the evidence on record,  the  Appellate
      Court held that merely for the reason that the plaintiff did not raise
      any objection and did  not  participate  in  various  proceedings,  it
      cannot be said that he stood  ousted  from  the  co-ownership  in  the
      property inherited from Khader  Hussain  Khan.   The  Appellate  Court
      further held that in fact plaintiff appears to have  no  knowledge  of
      the proceedings in which he was not a party.  It further observed that
      the joint possession over the land in suit  of  other  co-sharers  was
      also with the plaintiff.  The Appellate Court after holding  that  the
      property was jointly  owned  by  the  parties  decreed  the  suit  for
      partition vide its judgment and decree dated 25.1.1999.


      9.    It appears that three applications  viz.  A.S.M.P.  No.11880  of
      2004, A.S.M.P. No. 1098 of 2005 and  A.S.M.P.  No.1099  of  2005  were
      moved on behalf of the defendants for declaration of their  shares  in
      the preliminary decree passed in A.S No. 734 of  1991  arisen  out  of
      Suit No.471 of 1987. The High Court  by exercising powers contained in
      Section 151, and Section 152  read  with  Section  153  of  the  Code,
      disposed of these applications vide order  dated  21.4.2005  which  is
      challenged before us. The High Court  by  its  order  dated  21.4.2005
      allowed the above mentioned applications and directed that half  share
      belonging to Syed  Maqdoom  Shah  and  Syed  Hussain  Shah  (heirs  of
      Shahzadi Bee), 1/4th share of Basheer Khatoon,  Quadir  Hussain  Khan,
      Rabia Khan, Razia Moiuddin, Dr. Masood Nawaz and Mohammad  Yousuf  Ali
      Khan (heirs of Khadar Nawaz Khan), and 1/4th share of  Habib  Khatoon,
      Moin Khatoon, Zehra Khatoon, Tehera Khatoon, Sughra  Sameena  Khatoon,
      Kaneez  Fatima  Khatoon,   Butool   Khatoon,    Aysha   Khatoon    and
      Khaderalikhan (heirs of Feroz Khan) be partitioned.


      10.   We have heard learned counsel for the parties  and  perused  the
      papers on record.


      11.   On behalf of defendant No.12 Srihari (appellant before  us),  it
      is argued that the impugned order passed by the High Court  is  beyond
      the scope of Section 152 (read with Section 151 and  Section  153)  of
      the Code.  In support of his argument he relied in the case  of  State
      of Punjab vs. Darshan Singh AIR 2003 SC 4179:  (2004) 1  SCC  328  and
      Bijay Kumar Saraogi  vs.   State  of  Jharkhand   (2005)  7  SCC  748.
      Before further discussion, we think  just  and  proper  to  quote  the
      relevant provision of law under which impugned order appears  to  have
      been passed  by  the  High  Court.   Section  152  of  Code  of  Civil
      Procedure, 1908 reads as under:


                   "Amendment of judgments, decrees or orders. -   Clerical
           or arithmetical mistakes in  judgments,  decrees  or  orders  or
           errors arising therein from any accidental slip or omission  may
           at any time be corrected by the Court either of its  own  motion
           or on the application of any of the parties."




      12.   From the language of Section 152 of the Code, as  quoted  above,
      and also from the interpretation of the section given in the  case  of
      State of Punjab vs. Darshan Singh (supra), the section  is  meant  for
      correcting the clerical or arithmetical mistakes in judgments, decrees
      or orders or errors  arising  therein  from  any  accidental  slip  or
      omission.  It is true that the powers under Section 152  of  the  Code
      are neither to be equated with the power of review nor can be said  to
      be akin to review or even said to clothe  the  Court  under  guise  of
      invoking after the result  of  the  judgment  earlier  rendered.   The
      corrections contemplated under the section  are  of   correcting  only
      accidental omissions or mistakes and not all omissions  and  mistakes.
      The omission sought to be corrected which goes to the  merits  of  the
      case is beyond the scope of  Section  152.   In  Bijay  Kumar  Saraogi
      (supra) also it has been reiterated that Section 152 of the  Code  can
      be invoked for the limited purpose of correcting  clerical  errors  or
      arithmetical mistakes in judgments or accidental omissions.
      13.      Now we have to examine whether by  the  impugned  order,  the
      High Court has only corrected the clerical, arithmetical or accidental
      omission in the decree passed or not.  To appreciate the  same,  first
      we think it necessary to mention  as  to  what  the  word  “expression
      accidental omission” means.  In Master Construction Co. (P)  Ltd.  Vs.
      State of Orissa and Another AIR 1966 SC 1047, expression –  accidental
      slip or omission has been explained as an  error  due  to  a  careless
      mistake or omission unintentionally made.  It is further  observed  in
      the said case that there is another  qualification,  namely,  such  an
      error shall be apparent on the face of the record, that is to say,  it
      is not an error which depends for its discovery,  elaborate  arguments
      on questions of fact or law.


  14. Whether the High Court has acted within the scope of  Section  152  of
      the Code or not, we have to see as  to  what  were  the  pleadings  of
      parties, what was the decree passed, and what was the correction  made
      in it.


  15. The relevant part in paragraph 12 of the plaint of Original  Suit  No.
      471 of 1987 filed by Khader Nawaz Khan for partition, reads as under:
              “     Hence it  is  prayed  that,  kindly  the  suit  of  the
              plaintiff be decreed as follows:


                   a)  A  preliminary  decree  be  passed   declaring   the
                      plaintiff is entitled for 1/4th share in the matrooka
                      properties i.e.  land  Survey  Nos.  41,  42  and  43
                      admeasuring  Ac  49-24  guntas  situated  at  Kokapet
                      Village, Rajendranagar Revenue  Mandal,  RR  District
                      and a Commissioner  be  appointed  for  partition  be
                      delivered to the  plaintiff  to  the  extent  of  his
                      share, if due to any legal hitch the court finds that
                      the property is not partition able then the  property
                      be put in auction and sale proceeds be  paid  to  the
                      plaintiff to the extent of his  1/4th  share  in  the
                      interest of justice.


                   b) Cost of the suit to be awarded;
                   c) Any other relief or reliefs which  the  plaintiff  is
                      legally entitled to the same”.


      16.    Defendant no. 11 Syed Maqdoom Shah (respondent  No.1  in  these
      appeals) at the end of para 12 of his written statement,  has  pleaded
      and  prayed as under:
             “Hence it is prayed that the suit of plaintiff may  be  decreed
             along with the share of defendant no.11  as  shown  under  para
             no.6.  Further the amount of Rs.2,082/- spent by the  defendant
             no. 11 during last  28 years as shown above at para no.  7  and
             it may be decreed from the share of  the  plaintiff  and  other
             defendants or otherwise  give  4  acres  of  land  in  lieu  of
             Rs.2,182/- from the share of the plaintiff and other defendants
             in addition to his own share to meet the ends of justice”.


                  Para 6 of which reference is given in above quoted para as
      pleaded by defendant no.11 reads as under:
             “The shares ascertained as given by the  plaintiff  under  para
             (6) are correct”.




      17        In para 6 of the plaint, shares are mentioned as under:


             “ 6)   That, the shares of the parties are as follows:


             The defendants No. 10 and 11 are entitled for half share to the
             extent of their mother Shahzadi Bee.


             The plaintiff  is  entitled  for  1/4th  share  in  the  entire
             property.


             The defendant no. 1 to 9 are entitled for 1/4th share only”.




      18.      Now we re-produce the last sentence  of  judgment  and  order
      passed by the Appellate Court – High Court of Andhra Pradesh in  first
      appeal A.S. No. 734 of 1991 whereby suit for partition is decreed –
             “The suit is accordingly decreed and  appeal  is  allowed  with
             costs”.


      19.    By the impugned order dated 21.4.2005 exercising  powers  under
      Section 152 of the Code, the First Appellate Court has now directed as
      under:
             “Accordingly, for the reasons stated above, these  applications
             are allowed and the decree  in  A.S.  No.  734  of  1991  dated
             25.1.1996 is directed to be amended allotting and dividing half
             share in the suit schedule property to the petitioners 1 and 2,
             one-fourth share to respondents 1 to 6  herein  and  one-fourth
             share to respondents 7 to 15 herein.  There shall be  no  order
             as to costs”.




      20.   Had the appellate court, not decreed the suit with discussion of
      evidence after rejecting the plea of the defendant  No.12  as  to  his
      claim of ownership, and had the defendants 1 to  11  not  pleaded  for
      separation of their shares with admission of share of the plaintiff as
      decreed by the Appellate Court , it could have been said that the High
      Court erred in declaring shares of the plaintiff or the defendants  by
      resorting to Section 152 of the Code.  But in the present  case  since
      there is  a clear finding of shares of the parties in the judgment and
      order dated 25.1.1996,  as  such  by  clarifying  the  decree  by  the
      impugned order, in our opinion the High Court has committed no mistake
      of law.  In this connection, we would like to re-produce sub-rule  (2)
      of Rule 18 of Order XX of the Code, which reads as under:
             “18. Decree in suit  for  partition  of  property  or  separate
             possession of a share therein --Where the Court passes a decree
             for the partition of property or for the separate possession of
             a share therein, then,--
                 xxx      xxx           xxx        xxx
              (2) if and in so far as  such  decree  relates  to  any  other
             immovable property or to movable property, the  Court  may,  if
             the partition or separation cannot be conveniently made without
             further inquiry, pass a preliminary decree declaring the rights
             of the several parties, interested in the property  and  giving
             such further directions as may be required”.


      Above quoted sub-rule clearly indicates that in the preliminary decree
      not only the right of the plaintiff but rights and interests of others
      can also be declared.
      21.   At the end, we would also like to refer the case of  Shub  Karan
      Bubna alias Shub Karan vs. Sita Saran Bubna and Others  (2009)  9  SCC
      689 wherein it is explained that “partition” is  a  redistribution  or
      adjustment  of  pre-existing  rights,   among   co-owners/coparceners,
      resulting in a division of land or other properties  jointly  held  by
      them into different lots or  portions  and  delivery  thereof  to  the
      respective allottees. The effect  of such division is that  the  joint
      ownership is terminated and the respective  shares  vest  in  them  in
      severalty.
      22.      This Court has earlier also reiterated in U.P.SRTC vs. Imtiaz
      Hussain (2006) 1 SCC 380 has reiterated  that the basis  of  provision
      of Section 152 of the Code is found on the maxim 'actus curiae neminem
      gravabit' i.e. an act of Court shall prejudice no  man.   As  such  an
      unintentional mistake of the Court which may prejudice  the  cause  of
      any party must be rectified. However, this  does  not  mean  that  the
      Court is allowed to go into the merits of the case to alter or add  to
      the terms of the original decree or to give a finding which  does  not
      exist in the body of the judgment sought to be corrected.
      23.   For the reasons as discussed above, we  do  not  find  force  in
      these appeals which are  liable  to  be  dismissed.  Accordingly,  the
      appeals are dismissed.  No order as to costs.

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





                          ………………………………………………J
                           (PRAFULLA C. PANT)

NEW DELHI,
SEPTEMBER 16, 2014.

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