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Execution of Settlement Deed Without Right, Title or Authority Makes It Non-Est in Law: Madras HC

In a case of this nature, this Court has to necessarily find a way out in exercise of its Jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India. It is clear from the above that the Settlement Deed has been executed by the father of the 4 th respondent without any right, title or or authority and the Settlement Deed dt. 15.04.2015 is non est in the eye of law. This is the second time this Court is dealing with the rights of the petitioners and the relevant portions extracted supra from the earlier Orders passed by this Court, is enough to establish the right of the petitioners over the subject property. In the present Writ Petitions, the same can only be reiterated by this Court. (Para.10)


J. JAYANIITHAA VERSUS INSPECTOR GENERAL OF REGISTRATION & ORS.

[WP No.18721 of 2020]

Decided on December 15, 2020


This Writ Petition was decided by a single bench of the High Court of Judicature, Madras, consisting of Justice N Anand Venkatesh.


The petitioners, in this case, challenged the registration of the Settlement Deed, registered by the 3rd respondent, and sought a direction to the 3rd respondent to remove the entry of the registration.


The brief facts of the case are as follows. The property that is the subject matter of this case was purchased by late Mr. ASL Rajan, who is the father of the petitioner in this case. Mr. Dharmalinga Naicker filed a suit against him, declaring his title over the property. This suit was dismissed. The father of the 4th respondent also filed a suit against ASL Rajan, declaring title over the subject-matter property, that he allegedly bought from Mr. Naicker. This suit was also dismissed.


The evidence that confirmed that the property belonged to ASL Rajan was that he had developed the layout for 31 plots, after obtaining permission. The property was an Inam Land. The proceedings had been initiated by the Assistant Settlement Officer, and the Patta was also granted in favor of ASL Rajan. He had also conveyed a portion of the property to the Tamil Nadu Government. Thereafter, the property was settled in favor of the petitioners in 2006, with the Settlement Deed also being registered on the file of the 3rd respondent. The Patta was also issued in their favor.


Despite the above developments, the father of the 4th respondent fraudulently managed to get the Patta for the subject-matter property from the RDO, Tambaram. He also got a correction regarding the same made in the Town Survey Field Register. Further, he executed a Settlement Deed in favor of the 4th respondent.


The grievance of the petitioners is that the relevant entry with regard to the fraudulent Settlement Deed continues to be exhibited in the Encumbrance Certificate. Aggrieved by this, the parties filed this Writ Petition, under Article 226 of the Indian Constitution.

Mr. Abudu Kumar Rajarathinam, learned Counsel, appeared on behalf of the petitioners. Mr. TM Pappiah, learned Special Government Pleader, appeared on behalf of respondents 1-3.


The above stated facts clearly establishes that the 4th respondent and his father do not have any regard for orders passed by any Court or Authority. In spite of failing before the Competent Civil Court, the father of the 4th respondent has executed a Settlement Deed without any semblance of right. It looks as if, the 4th respondent and his father will keep executing documents with regard to the subject property and unfortunately the 3rd respondent is mechanically entertaining the documents and registering the same. There is no provision in the Registration Act which enables the official respondents to cancel any document or any entry made in the records. In a situation like this, expecting the parties to go before the Civil Court every time an illegal document is registered, makes it almost impossible for the real owner of the property to deal with his own property. It is a known factor that proceedings initiated before the Civil Court does not come to an end that quickly and it is a long-drawn journey [Para 9].

The Court took notice of the fact that the respondents are taking advantage of the lack of any provision in the Registration Act that allows the Registrar to cancel any documents or entries made in their records. This forces the petitioners to go to Court every time an illegal document is executed and registered fraudulently by the respondents.


In a case of this nature, this Court has to necessarily find a way out in exercise of its Jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India. It is clear from the above that the Settlement Deed has been executed by the father of the 4 th respondent without any right, title or or authority and the Settlement Deed dt. 15.04.2015 is non est in the eye of law. This is the second time this Court is dealing with the rights of the petitioners and the relevant portions extracted supra from the earlier Orders passed by this Court, is enough to establish the right of the petitioners over the subject property. In the present Writ Petitions, the same can only be reiterated by this Court. (Para.10)

The Court stated that the Settlement Deed has been executed by the respondents without any right over the property, and is therefore, non-est in the eyes of law. The Court directed the petitioners to present the current order before the 3rd respondent, who shall register the same on payment of stamp duty and registration fees. By such registration, the earlier entries will get automatically reversed.


Navyaa Shukla

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