Case: – Munishamappa v/s M. Rama Reddy & Ors.; Civil Appeal No. 10327 of 2011
The appeal challenged a judgment from the High Court of Karnataka, which had allowed the Second Appeal by the defendant-respondent, leading to the dismissal of the suit for specific performance of a contract filed by the appellant.
The case revolved around an Agreement to Sell made on May 28, 1990, between the appellant and respondents for a property. The agreement stipulated that the property would be sold for Rs. 23,000, with the entire sale consideration paid before execution. Due to a prohibition on registration of the sale deed under the Karnataka Prevention of Fragmentation and Consolidation of Holdings Act, 1996, the sale deed was to be executed once the restriction was lifted.
The Supreme Court observed as follows:
“10. The Agreement to Sell is not a conveyance; it does not transfer ownership rights or confers any title. What is prohibited or barred under the Fragmentation Act was the lease/sale/conveyance or transfer of rights. Therefore, the Agreement to Sell cannot be said to be barred under 5 the Fragmentation Act. The appellant filed the suit for specific performance after the repeal of the Fragmentation Act. The suit could have been decreed without there being any violation to the law once the Fragmentation Act itself had been repealed in February 1991. Further, the High Court did not hold that the suit was barred by Section 5 of the Limitation Act. The First Appeal Court had considered this aspect and having decided the said issue in favour of the appellant, we need not go into that question at this stage. What is further noticeable is that the respondents received the full consideration and had also transferred the possession of the property in question, as such other defences may not be available to them. Even the issue of readiness and willingness on the part of the appellant would not be relevant.”

Author of this article:
Adv. Ravish Bhatt,
Partner, R&D Law Chambers,
Dual Qualified Lawyer Solicitor | International Tax Affiliate

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