S. SUNDER SINGH Vs. HIRA SINGH AND OTHERS
HIGH COURT OF PUNJAB AND HARYANA
S. Sunder Singh
Hira Singh And Others
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Khosla, J. -
(1.) THE only question for my decision in this case is whether for the purposes of court -fee the plaint of the petitioner is governed by the provisions of S. 7 (iv) (c), Court -fees Act, or by S. 7 (v). The facts briefly are that the plaintiff effected two alienations of his properties in favour of his son and nephews in 1935. The object of these alienations was to place his properties beyond the reach of his creditors. Possession of the properties sold was transferred to the alienees and these properties thereafter remained in their possession. The alienees, namely, defendants 1 to 3, later transferred these properties to defendants 4 and 5. The plaintiff then brought the present suit in which he alleged that the alienations effected by him were sham transactions and that the real title of the properties had throughout remained in him. He, therefore, sought a declaration that the two alienations effected by him were null and void and also prayed for possession of the properties in dispute by way of consequential relief. He also claimed a decree for the rendition of accounts. He valued his suit for purposes of jurisdiction at Rs. 5,100 with regard to the relief of declaration and Rs. 130 with regard to the rendition of accounts. He paid court -fee on the total amount, namely, on Rs. 5,230. The court fee was assessed under the provisions of S. 7 (iv) (c), Court -fees Act.
(2.) OBJECTION was taken by the defendants on the ground that the substantive relief claimed by the plaintiff was possession of the properties and that he should, therefore, pay court -fee on the value of the properties in dispute. The trial Judge upheld this objection and directed the plaintiff to pay additional court -fee. The plaintiff has moved this Court on the revision side. I have heard parties counsel at some length and have considered a number of cases cited before me. It seems to me that the cases in which a declaration together with a consequential relief is sought for fall into four different classes. In the first place a plaintiff may pray for a declaration of simple title and possession by way of consequential relief. In these cases it is clear that it is not necessary for the plaintiff to ask for a declaration of his title and that his real object in coming to Court is to get possession of property. A mere denial of the plaintiff's title by the person in possession does not entitle the plaintiff to claim a declaration of his title. These are cases in which the plaintiff must sue for possession and must pay court -fee according to the provisions of S. 7 (v), Court -fees Act. There is no conflict of opinion regarding cases of this type.
(3.) THE second class of cases arises when the plaintiff encounters some impediment in the form of a deed or decree which stands in the way of his getting possession of the property. In such cases he may ask for a declaration and for the cancellation of the decree or deed by way of consequential relief. These are clearly cases which fall under S. 7 (iv) (c), Court -fees Act, and since the cancellation of the decree or deed is a necessary consequence of the declaration that the decree of deed is inoperative, the plaintiff is entitled to say that the cancellation asked for is by way of consequential relief. This view was clearly expressed in Panapdassji v. Gopichand,, A. I. R. 1941 Lah. 255: (196 I. C. 254) and in Mt. Rupia v. Bhatu Mahtin,, A. I. R. (31) 1944 Pat. 17 : (22 Pat. 783 F. B.).;
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