Delhi Development Authority Versus Diwan Chand Anand & Ors.

Delhi Development Authority Versus Diwan Chand Anand & Ors.

Landmark Cases of India / सुप्रीम कोर्ट के ऐतिहासिक फैसले



REPORTABLE
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 2397 of 2022 
                                                                                               
Delhi Development Authority             ...Appellant 
Versus
Diwan Chand Anand & Ors.      …Respondents
With
CIVIL APPEAL NO.2398 OF 2022
Delhi Development Authority …Appellant
Versus
Diwan Chand Anand & Ors.             …Respondents 
J U D G M E N T 
M. R. Shah, J.
1
1. Feeling   aggrieved   and   dissatisfied   with   the   impugned
order dated 09.07.2007 passed by the High Court of Delhi in
RFA   No.280   of   2001   and   the   subsequent   order   dated
13.01.2012 passed by the High Court in R.P. No.314 of 2008
in the very same RFA No.280 of 2001, the original appellant
before the High Court – Delhi Development Authority (‘DDA’
for short) has preferred the present appeals.
2. The facts leading to the present appeals in a nutshell are
as under:
The two plaintiffs, namely, Shri Diwan Chand Anand and
Smt. Chanan Kanta Anand claiming to be the co­owners of the
suit property filed the suit before the Civil Court/learned Trial
Court for declaration and permanent injunction.  The suit was
filed challenging the acquisition proceedings under the Land
Acquisition Act, 1894 (hereinafter referred to as ‘the Act’).  In
the plaint defendant nos. 8 to 39 were impleaded alleging to
be   co­shares   as   proper   parties   to   the   suit.     The   original
plaintiff no.2, Smt. Chanan Kanta Anand, was the wife of
original defendant no.8 – Shri Dharam Chand Anand.  On the
demise of the husband and wife (original plaintiff no. 2 &
2
defendant   no.   8)   their   children   were   substituted   both   as
plaintiff nos. 2(i) to 2(x) and defendant nos. 8(i) to 8(x).  The
suit was contested by the original defendant nos. 1 to 5 and 7
including the appellant DDA.  They filed the written statement
controverting the claim of the plaintiffs.  The suit was resisted
on the ground that the Civil Court had no jurisdiction with
respect to a challenge to the acquisition proceedings under
the Land Acquisition Act.  Other defendant nos. 8 to 39 did
not file any written statement and they were proceeded exparte vide order dated 22.03.1983 and 06.10.1983.  
2.1 The learned Trial Court initially framed four issues as
under:
“Whether   the   notification   dated   16.01.1969
under   Section   6   of   the   Land   Acquisition   Act   with
respect to the land in dispute is illegal due to nonsatisfaction   of   the   appropriate   authority   as   to   the
existences of the public purpose? OPP
2.   Whether the defendants withdrew from the
acquisition proceedings? OPP
3.  What is the effect of Letter dated 10.01.1967
and February, 1968 filed as Annexure D and G to the
Plaint? OPP.
4.  Relief”
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2.2 That   thereafter   one   additional   preliminary   issue   was
framed on 12.12.1995 as under:
“Whether Civil Court has jurisdiction to go into
the validity of the notification under Section 4 and 6
under Land Acquisition Act?”
2.3 By judgment and decree dated 12.01.2000, the learned
Trial Court decreed the suit.  It is the case on behalf of the
appellant – DDA that despite the learned Trial Court giving a
finding that the Civil Court had no jurisdiction to go into the
question   of   validity   and   legality   of   the   notification   under
Section 4 of the Act, it decreed the suit and held that the
notifications   in   question   ceased   to   exist   although   the
notification under Section 48 of the Act had not been issued.
The contesting defendants were restrained from dispossessing
the   plaintiffs   and   other   co­owners   land   so   notified   for
acquisition.
2.4 Feeling aggrieved and dissatisfied by the learned Trial
Court, DDA preferred the appeal before the High Court being
RFA No.280 of 2001.  The original plaintiff no.1 was arrayed
as   Respondent   No.38   whereas   LRs   of   plaintiff   no.2   and
defendant no.8 were arrayed as Respondent no.39 (2 – 10),
4
and other defendants 9­39 were arrayed as Respondent nos.
7­37 in the appeal.   The appeal was admitted for hearing.
The   original   plaintiff/respondent   nos.   38   &   39   were
represented   by   counsel.     That   some   of   the   respondents
(original defendants) out of respondent nos. 7 to 37 (out of
original defendant nos. 9 to 39) were not served as some of
them   had   died.     By   order   dated   09.07.2007   the   Division
Bench   of   the   High   Court   dismissed   the   entire   appeal   as
having abated by observing as under:
"Many   respondents   have   died   during   the
pendency of the appeal but no steps have been taken
by the appellant to bring their Legal Representatives
on record.
This appeal accordingly stands abated.”
2.5 That the appellant – DDA filed Review Petition No.314 of
2008 seeking review of the order dated 09.07.2007 dismissing
the appeal as having abated.  The High Court issued notice on
03.09.2008 which remained unserved till the decision in the
impugned  order dated  13.01.2012.    In  the  meantime,  the
original plaintiff no.1 Shri Diwan Chand Anand was reported
to have expired on 16.11.2010 and after ascertaining about
his legal representatives, application for substitution, being
5
CM No.22449 of 2011 was filed on 08.11.2012, which also
remained pending.  By the impugned order dated 13.01.2012
the High Court has dismissed the review application and has
refused to recall the order dated 09.07.2007 dismissing the
appeal as having abated.   The original order passed by the
High Court dated 09.07.2007 dismissing the main appeal as
having abated and the subsequent order dated 13.01.2012
dismissing the review application and refusing to recall the
order dated 09.07.2007 are the subject matter of the present
appeals. 
3. Shri   Sanjay   Poddar,   learned   Senior   Advocate   has
appeared on behalf of the appellant – DDA and Shri Shyam
Divan, learned Senior Advocate has appeared on behalf of the
contesting respondent nos.33 and Shri Sunil Gupta, learned
Senior Advocate has appeared on behalf of respondent nos. 3
to 40.
4. Shri   Poddar,   learned   Senior   Advocate   appearing   on
behalf of the appellant – DDA has vehemently submitted that
the High Court has dismissed the appeal as abated solely on
6
the ground of failure on the part of the appellant to bring on
record   the   legal   representatives   of   certain   respondents
without going into the question as to whether the presence of
such persons was necessary and also without deciding the
application being CM No.22449 of 2011 (for substitution of
legal representatives of original plaintiff ­ Shri Diwan Chand
Anand).
4.1 It is submitted that as a matter of fact the appeal has
not   been   dismissed   on   the   ground   of   non­substitution   of
plaintiffs, who are necessary parties.  It is contended that the
appeal as a whole cannot be treated as abated on failure to
substitute the legal representative of such defendants who
even did not file written statement and even remained exparte, in view of the provisions of Order 22 Rule 4(4) of the
Code of Civil Procedure (for short ‘CPC’).
4.2 It is further urged that the High Court has dismissed the
appeal on hyper technical ground without examining the core
issue, as to, whether, the Appeal can be heard in the absence
of such respondents/defendants or not.
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4.3 It is also submitted that even during the course of the
hearing of the SLPs, the contesting respondents have argued
that said two plaintiffs filed the suit on behalf of other coowners/defendants and they were prosecuting the suit on
their behalf though these defendants remained ex­parte and
thus the learned Trial Court rightly passed the decree in their
favour.  Reliance was placed on behalf of the appellants upon
the decision of this Court in the case of A. Viswanatha Pilliai
and others vs. The Special Tehsildar for Land Acquisition
No.4   and   others,   (1991)   4   SCC   17  in   support   of   the
submission that one co­owner can prefer and prosecute the
legal remedies for and on behalf of other co­owners.   It is
submitted that applying the same analogy, the same co­owner
can also defend and represent the entire estate of other coowner.     That   if   the   entire   estate   is   represented   by   the
plaintiffs   in   the   suit,   then   they   are   deemed   to   have
represented the same in the appeal.  It is submitted that the
respondents/defendants   who   died   did   not   file   written
statement and remained ex­parte and therefore they were not
necessary parties for adjudication of the appeal.  Reliance is
8
placed upon the decision of this Court in the case of  Mata
Prasad Mathur vs. Jawala Prasad  Mathur,   (2013)  14 SCC
722  and  Kanhiya  Lal  vs.  Rameshwar,   (1983)  2  SCC  260
(para 6).
4.4 It is further submitted that it is a well settled law that
whether the appeal abets as a whole has to depend upon facts
of each case and no straight formula is applicable since each
case   has   its   own   peculiarities.     It   is   submitted   that   the
Hon’ble High Court has failed to examine this important and
vital aspect which was required to be considered as observed
and held by the Constitution Bench Judgment of this Hon’ble
Court in the case of Sardar Amarjit Singh Kalra vs. Pramod
Gupta, (2003) 3 SCC 272 (para 26).
4.5 It   is   urged   that   in   the   aforesaid   Constitution   Bench
Judgment   this   Hon’ble   Court   has   further   held   that   the
provisions of Order 22 Rule 4 CPC are required to be applied
liberally with the object of protecting the rights of the parties
and not to destroy the same.  It is contended that when the
9
land is sought to be acquired and meant for a public purpose
as in the instant case interest of justice warrants that the
appeal be heard on merits in a time bound manner and may
not be dismissed as abated. 
4.6 Now   so   far   as   on   the   issue   of   abatement   of   present
SLPs/appeals on the alleged ground of non­impleadment of
the LRs of Jagdish Anand in the present SLPs/appeals who
was   one   of   the   legal   heirs   of   original   plaintiff   no.2   and
defendant no.8, it is submitted that Jagdish Anand was one of
the   legal   representatives   of   original   plaintiff   no.2   and
defendant   no.8,   out   of   the   10.     That   the   other   legal
representatives are already on record and therefore as the
estate is represented by the other legal representatives the
present appeals can proceed in the presence of the other legal
representatives   who   are   already   on   record   as   all   of   them
represent the estate of their father and mother.
4.7 So far as the submission on behalf of the contesting
respondents that on the issue of finality of judgment/decree
on account of non­substitution of legal representatives and/or
there may be conflicting or inconsistent decrees is concerned,
10
it is submitted that as such the judgment and decree passed
by   the   learned   Trial   Court   is   a   nullity   being   without
jurisdiction as this Hon’ble Court in the case of State of Bihar
vs. Dharender Kumar, (1995) 4 SCC 229  has held that the
Civil  Court  has   no  jurisdiction  to   entertain  a  civil  suit  in
respect of the Land Acquisition Proceedings/Notifications and
cannot pass an injunction order to restrain the government
from taking possession.  It is submitted that the decree being
a   nullity   the   validity   of   such   a   decree   can   be   questioned
whenever and wherever it is sought to be relied upon, even at
the   stage   of   execution   and   even   at   the  collateral  stage   of
proceedings.  It is submitted that the defect of jurisdiction as
to the subject matter of the suit land, strikes at the root of the
matter and such a defect cannot be cured even by consent of
the parties. 
4.8 Now   in   so   far   as   the   submission   on   behalf   of   the
contesting   respondents,   that   there   is   a   huge   delay   in
challenging the original order dated 09.07.2007 passed in the
First   Appeal,   it   is   submitted   that   the   appellant   was
prosecuting the Review Application which was filed in the year
11
2008 which remained pending till 13.01.2012.  That the delay
in preferring the review was condoned by the High Court.
Therefore, the appellant is entitled to seek exclusion of the
period during the pendency of the review petition and the
same has been challenged in the present proceeding.   It is
submitted   that   the   submission   of   the   respondents   in   this
regard is liable to be rejected.   This is because as observed
and held by this Court in the case of Esha Bhattacharjee vs.
Managing Committee of Ragunathpur Nafar Academy and
others, (2013) 12 SCC 649  as well as in the recent decision
in the case of  Radha Gajapathi Raju &  Ors.  vs. P. Maduri
Gajapathi Raju & Ors. In Civil Appeal No.6974­6975/2021
arising  out  of  SLP   (C)  No.3373­3374  of  2020  decided  on
22.11.2021  pendency of the proceedings in another Court
can be said to be a sufficient ground for condonation of delay.
Making above submissions and relying upon the above
decisions, it is prayed to allow the present appeals, set aside
the orders passed by the High Court dismissing the appeal as
a   whole   as   having   abated   due   to   non­bringing   the   legal
representatives   of   some   of   the   respondents   –   original
12
defendants on record and to direct to decide the main appeal
on merits.
5. While   opposing   the   present   appeals,   learned   Senior
Advocates appearing on behalf of the contesting respondents,
have, firstly, submitted that as such there is a huge delay of
1811 days in filing Civil Appeal No.2398 of 2022 against the
main order dated 09.07.2007 with no plausible justification
and explanation.  As a matter of fact, even the review petition
before the High Court was barred by limitation by 378 days.
5.1 It is further submitted by Learned Senior Advocates on
behalf   of   the   Contesting   Respondents   that   in   order   to
appreciate the controversy before the learned Trial Court, few
facts are required to be considered which are as under:
“1.  Plaintiffs 1 & 2, Diwan Chand Anand and Smt.
Chanan Kanta Anand, along with Sh. Dharam Chand
Anand,   Sh.   Gian   Chand   etc.   were   migrants   from
Lahore, Pakistan.  The said plaintiffs along with Sh.
Dharam   Chand   Anand   &   others,   in   and   around
1947­48, purchased the disputed land, situated in
Village   Kharera,   Tehsil   Mehrauli,   bearing   Khasra
no.393, 394 & 395, admeasuring 30 bighas 6 biswas
of land, along with super structure, from one Sh.
Mohd Ishaq. Sh. Dharam   Chand Anand re­started
his   business   of   body   building   on   Trucks   by
13
constructing a factory on the said parcels of land in
the name of Anand Automobiles and supplied bus
bodies to the Military.
2.     Since   Mohd   Ishaq   migrated   to   Pakistan,   the
properties   were   claimed   by   Custodian   of   Evacuee
Properties.     Representation   was   made   by   the
Plaintiffs & others to de­notify the same as Evacuee
Property.  The same was duly considered and on 5th
December 1953, the Custodian of Evacuee Properties
confirmed the sale of the said land with the superstructure, in favour of Plaintiffs & other co­sharers.
Sale Certificate was filed with the plaint.   The said
land is situated within “Lal Dora”.
3.     Subsequently,   two   Deeds   of   Conveyance   with
respect to 30 bighas 6 biswas of land, were executed
by the President of India, in the year 1962, in favour
of the said Plaintiffs along with Sh. Dharam Chand
Anand, Sh.   Gian Chand & other co­sharers.   The
deeds   neither   specified   the   shares   of   he   said   six
persons   in   the   parcels   of   land   nor   allocated   or
demarcated any portions of the land between them. 
4.  In the year 1964, Notification under Section 4 of
the Land Acquisition Act, 1894 was issued in respect
to number of parcels of land including the aforesaid
land.
5. On 1st  May, 1964, the co­sharers filed objections
against the notification and nothing was heard for
almost 5 years.  On 19th September, 1966, one of the
co­sharer of the said property, made representation
against the proposed acquisitions to GoI.
6.  On 23th December, 1966, the Central Govt wrote
to   the   Lt.   Governor   of   Delhi   to   release   the   land
comprised in Khasra nos. 393, 394 & 395, covered
by notification dated 21st March, 1964
7.   Release Policy: On 7th  January, 1967, Central
Govt. made a policy decision that lands which were
isolated and situated amidst built up areas and not
required for public purposes were to be released from
acquisition.     On   10th  January,   1967,   the   Central
Govt. wrote to one of the co­owners, viz Shiv Raj
14
Bahadur that Delhi Administration has been directed
to de­notify the land in dispute.
8.     Thereafter,   on   6th  February,   1967,   the   Lt.
Governor of Delhi wrote to Central Govt. confirming
necessary   draft   to   de­notify   the   land   to   ensure
directions.
9.  Again on 10th October 1967, one of the co­sharer
made another representation requesting for release of
land.
10.   On 9th  February 1968, the GoI wrote to Delhi
Administration   that   decision   in   letter   dated
23.12.1966   stands   and   directed   to   de­notify   the
parcels of land, which are subject matter of the SLPs.
11.   However, on 16th  January, 1969, Notification
under   Section   6   of   the   Land   Acquisition   Act   was
issued with respect to the land aforesaid.
12.  Two out of the six persons, in whose favour the
Deeds   of   Conveyance   were   executed,   viz   Dewan
Chand Anand & Chanan Kanta Anand w/o Dharam
Chand Anand, filed a suit in the High  Court of Delhi,
in   the   year   1974,   seeking   declaration   that   the
Notification dated 21.03.1964 issued under Section 4
of the Land Acquisition Act stands withdrawn and or
cancelled/waived and that the Section 6 Notification
is mala­fide, null and void, inoperative in law and
without   and   or   in   excess   of   jurisdiction   and
acquisition.  It was inter alia the plea of the plaintiffs
in the suit, that the Central Government, upon being
approached by some of the owners of the land, who
were   impleaded   as   defendants,   had   by   a
communication   to   the   then   Delhi   Administration
stated that the subject land was not required for the
stated   purpose   and   thus   the   Notification   under
Section 6 was bad and without application of mind.
13.  The suit was instituted by 2 plaintiffs i.e. 2 of the
co­owenrs.  However, out of the remaining 4 persons,
in whose favour conveyance deeds were executed, 3
had already died and accordingly in the said suit,
Dharam Chand Anand, the co­owner and the legal
heirs of the remaining 3 co­owners had to be and
were also impleaded as defendants, as being proper
15
parties, besides the Land Acquisition Authorities and
DDA.”
5.2 It   is   submitted   that   the   other   owners   of   the   land
impleaded as defendants, did not contest the suit, as the suit
was in mutual interest.  A preliminary issue, namely, whether
a civil suit impugning the notifications under Sections 4 & 6
of the Act is maintainable was decided against the plaintiffs.
However, ultimately, the suit was decreed vide judgment and
decree dated 12.01.2000 by which a decree of declaration was
passed holding that the notifications under Sections 4 & 6 of
the Act had ceased to exist even before filing of the suit and
the suit lands stood released from the ambit and scope of the
notifications.   The learned Trial Court also passed a decree of
permanent injunction restraining the official defendants from
dispossessing the plaintiffs and other co­sharers from the suit
property.     It   is   submitted   that   thereafter   in   an   appeal
preferred by DDA alone, a number of opportunities were given
to   bring   the   legal   representatives   (LRs)   of   some   of   the
respondents on record.  But the DDA failed to bring on record
the LRs of many of the respondents who died.  It is submitted
that, at one point of time, the suit was dismissed for non16
prosecution   which   was   later   restored.     Several   of   the   five
respondents i.e. the original purchasers of the lands and their
heirs   died.     Even   the   plaintiff   –   original   plaintiff   no.1   –
respondent died on 16.11.2010.   Though opportunities were
given for substitution of LRs.  They were not substituted.  It is
submitted that in these circumstances, the High Court vide
final order dated 09.07.2007 dismissed the appeal as abated.
It   is   submitted   that   owing   to   the   original   plaintiff   no.1   –
respondent   dying   and   also   a   number   of   other   private
respondents dying, the High Court in the said order, appears
to have not given their details.  It is submitted that however, it
is not in dispute that a large number of private respondents
did die during the pendency of the appeal and the LRs were
not brought on record despite more than thirty opportunities
being given to the DDA.
5.3 Now so far as the main issue on merits, that is, whether
on the non­substitution of legal representatives of some of the
respondents ­ owners of the land and/or whether on demise of
the some of the respondents during the pendency of the first
appeal and the  appellant  therein not  bringing the LRs on
17
record   despite   repeated   opportunities,   whether   the   entire
appeal   stood   abated   or   only   in   so   far   as   the   particular
deceased   respondents,   it   is   vehemently   submitted   by   the
learned Senior Advocate for the contesting respondents that
there would be conflicting decrees qua the respondents who
are already served and whose LRs are brought on record and
qua the deceased respondents whose legal representatives are
not brought on record.  It is submitted by the learned Senior
Advocate that decree dated 12.01.2000 will be in favour of the
legal representatives of all the deceased respondents and if the
appeal   succeeds   in   High   Court,   there   will   be   conflicting
decrees since the property is jointly owned and the decree is
inseparable or inseverable as the property remains undivided
with each party having right, title and interest in the entire
property.
5.4 It is submitted that factually there were two deeds of
conveyance   in   respect   of   the   entire   land   in   favour   of   six
owners, without demarcating their respective shares.  Thus, in
law each of the six owners or their heirs were the owners of
the entire land having right, title and interest in every part
18
and parcel of land along with others and it cannot be said that
the said owners were exclusive owners of any portion of the
suit   lands.     It   is   submitted   that   in   the   case   of  K.
Vishwanathan   Pillai   versus   Special   Tehsildar   for   Land
Acquisition No.IV,   (1991) 4 SCC  17,  it has been held that
one of the co­owners can file a suit and recover the property
against the stranger and the decree would enure to the benefit
of all the co­owners.   It is submitted that no co­owner has
right, title and interest in any of the item or portion of the
property but has a right, title and interest in every part and
parcel of the joint property.
5.5 It is submitted that in the present case the learned Trial
Court vide judgment and decree had decreed that firstly, the
notifications had ceased to exist even before filing of the suit
and therefore, the suit land stood released from the scope of
the said notifications.   Secondly, the permanent injunction
was granted in favour of the plaintiffs and private respondents
(co­sharers) and against the land acquisition authorities as
well   as   the   DDA,   where   the   DDA   was   restrained   from
19
dispossessing   them.     It   is   submitted   that   considering   the
aforesaid   facts   of   the   case,   in   the   absence   of   legal
representatives of the deceased respondents, the decree in
respect of the suit property would become final vis­à­vis the
said persons.  But in the present proceedings in respect of the
self­same suit property are allowed to continue as against the
other respondents, the enforcement of the decree consequent
to   the   possible   success   of   the   proceedings   would   lead   to
conflict   of   decrees   not   permissible   in   law.     The   relief   of
permanent injunction in favour of the deceased respondents
would continue to be in force, whereas it would not be in force
as against the respondents.  This also will result in passing of
two   conflicting   decrees   which   shall   be   incapable   of
enforcement.
5.6 It is submitted that the present is the case of “joint and
indivisible   decree”/“joint   and   inseverable   or   inseparable
decree”. Hence when there is omission or lapse or failure to
bring on record the LRs of one or more deceased respondents
on time, it would be fatal and would require the appeal to be
dismissed in toto and it would result in abatement of entire
20
proceedings.  Otherwise, inconsistent or contradictory decrees
would result with respect to same subject matter vis­à­vis the
others.
Making   the   above   submissions   it   is   vehemently
submitted that the High Court has rightly dismissed the entire
appeal as having abated and the same is not required to be
interfered with by this Court.
6. Making   above   submissions   and   relying   upon   the
decisions of this Court in the case of  State   of  Punjab   vs.
Nathu   Ram,   AIR   1962   SC   89;  Hemareddi   vs.
Ramachandra,   (2019)   6   SCC   756;  Sunkara
Lakehminarassama  vs.  Sagi,   (2019)  11  SCC  787  and the
recent decision of this Court Venigalla Koteswaramman vs.
Malempati   Suryamba,   (2021)   4   SCC   246,  it is prayed to
dismiss the present appeals. 
7. We have heard learned counsel for the respective parties
at length.
21
8. At the outset, it is required to be noted that by order
dated 09.07.2007, the High Court dismissed the First Appeal
preferred by the appellant herein as having abated on the
ground that with respect to some of the original defendants –
respondents in appeal who died, their legal representatives
were not brought on record.  Thus, on non­bringing the legal
representatives of some of the respondents who died during
the   pendency   of   the   appeal   on   record,   the   High   Court
dismissed the appeal as a whole as having abated.  The said
order dated 09.07.2007 reads as under:
“R.F.A. No.280/2001
Many respondents have died during the pendency of
the appeal but no steps have been taken by the
appellant   to   bring   their   Legal   representatives   on
record.  This appeal accordingly stands abated.”
8.1 Thereafter the appellant preferred the review application
in the year 2008 which has been dismissed by the High Court
by the impugned order dated 13.01.2012.  At this stage, it is
required to be noted that there was a delay in preferring the
Review Application which came to be condoned by the High
Court.     That   subsequently   the   appellant   herein   –   DDA   –
22
original   appellant,   preferred   the   present   two   appeals,   one,
challenging the original order dated 09.07.2007 dismissing
the   appeal   as   a   whole   as   having   abated   and   the   second,
challenging the order dismissing the review application.  It is
sought   to   be   contended   on   or   behalf   of   the   contesting
respondents that there is a huge delay in preferring the appeal
challenging the order dated 09.07.2007 and therefore present
Appeal may not be entertained.  However, the appellant was
bona   fide   prosecuting   the   review   application.     That   after
dismissal  of  the   review  application  in   which  the  appellant
prayed to review and recall the order dated 09.07.2007, that
the   appellant   has   preferred   two   separate   appeals,   one,
challenging   the   dismissal   of   the   review   application   and
another,   challenging   the   original   order   dated   09.07.2007.
Therefore, once the appellant was bona fide prosecuting the
review application, it was justified in waiting for the outcome
of the Review Application.  If, without waiting for the outcome
of the review application, the appellant would have preferred
the appeal at that stage, the appellant would have been nonsuited on the ground of the pendency of the review application
and   the   appellant   would   have   been   told   to   wait   till   the
23
outcome of the review application.  Therefore, in the facts and
circumstances of the case the time taken in prosecuting the
review application is to be excluded and the appeal preferred
challenging the order dated 09.07.2007 is to be considered on
merits.   Therefore, the objection on behalf of the contesting
respondents   not   to   consider   the   substantive   appeal
challenging the order dated 09.07.2007 on merits is hereby
overruled and we may proceed to consider the order dated
09.07.2007 dismissing the appeal as a whole as having abated
on merits.
8.2 Before we consider the order dated 09.07.2007 on merits
the relevant pleadings and the necessary averments in the
plaint which would have a direct bearing on the controversy in
the   present   appeal   are   required   to   be   referred   to.     It   is
required to be noted and it is not in dispute that the suit was
filed by only two co­owners and rest of the co­owners/cosharers   were   joined   as   defendants   as   proper   parties.
According to the original plaintiffs, the land in question was
owned   jointly   by   the   original   plaintiffs   and   the   other   co24
sharers which can be culled out from the following averments
in the plaint:
“4.   That   by   order   dated   5th   December,   1953,   the
Custodian   of   Evacuee   Properties   confirmed   the   sale
regarding the said land in favour of the Plaintiffs and
the other co­sharers on condition that they will pay the
amount of Rs. 65,399.00 to the Custodian of Evacuee
Properties. That amount of Rs. 65,339.00 was paid to
the Custodian by the Plaintiffs and other Co­sharers. 
5.   That   on   the   26th   April,   1962,   the   Custodian   of
Evacuee Properties issued Sale Certificates regarding
the said land in favour of the Plaintiff and the other cosharers.   A   copy   of   the   Sale   Certificate   is   attached
herewith as Annexure "B". 
7. That after the purchase, the Plaintiffs and the
other cosharers began to reside on land bearing Khasra
No. 395 and some of the co­sharers made a number of
improvements and constructions from 1947­48 to 1963
in the land comprised in the said Khasra and some cosharers   also   set   up   an   Automobile   Factory   for   the
manufacture of automobiles and ancillary parts and
body building for mechanically propelled vehicles, in
the said land.
11. That on 1st May, 1964, the co­sharers of this
property filed objections against the said Notification
and thereafter for almost 5 years, no hearing was fixed
for the said objections and no notice of any kind was
received by any of the cosharers. 
12. That on 19th September, 1966, Mrs. Shiv Raj
Bahadur, who is one of the co­sharers of this property,
made a representation against the proposed acquisition
to   the   Government   of   India,   through   the   Hon'ble
Minister Shri Mehar Chand Khanna of the Ministry of
Works & Housing. A copy of the representation made,
is attached herewith as Annexure "C".
25
44. That the Plaintiffs and the other co­sharers
have all along been harassed for reasons unknown, for
acquiring the said property by the Local Administration
in spite of two specific directions and decisions of the
Central Government to denotify the said property.
(45)   That   the   legal   representatives   of   the   cosharers who had died, were entitled to be heard and
although   it   was   brought   to   the   notice   of   the   Land
Acquisition   Collector   that   there   were   legal
representatives of the deceased owners, but they were
not given any opportunity of being heard, and no notice
was issued to them, therefore, the entire proceedings
are vitiated.
47. That Defendants nos. 8 to 39 are co­sharers
in the land in dispute and have been impleaded as
proper parties to the suit”
8.3 That   the   plaintiffs   being   co­owners/co­sharers   of   the
entire suit land in question prayed for the following reliefs:   
“(a) It is declared that the­entire proceedings
adopted under Section SA of the Land Acquisition Act
are malafide, illegal and incomplete violation of the
letter and spirit of. the Land Acquisition Act and is
contrary to the principles of natural justice, fair­play,
equity and good conscience. 
(b)   It   is   declared   that   the   Notification   no.
F.19(93­A)/63­   L&H(ii)   dated   21st   March,   1964
issued under, Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act
stands withdrawn and/ or cancelled and waived by
your own conduct. 
(c)   It   be   declared   that   the   Notification   No.
F.19(93­A)/63­   L&H   dated   16th   January,   1969
issued under Section 6 of the Land Acquisition Act is
malafide,   illegal,   null   and   void,   ultra   vires,
inoperative in Law and without jurisdiction and/ or
in excess of jurisdiction. 
26
(d) A permanent injunction be issued against
the Defendants not to dispossess the Plaintiffs and
the   other   co­sharers   from   the   property   and   land
bearing Khasra no. 395, 394 and 708/393 of Village
Kharera. 
(e) An ad interim ex­parte injunction in terms of
the proceedings prayer. 
(f)   The   costs   of   the   suit   be   allowed   to   the
Plaintiff against the Defendants. 
(g) The Defendants be ordered to pay to the
Plaintiffs the cost of incidentals. 
(h) The Court may pass such other and further
orders as may be just, proper and necessary under
the circumstances of the case.”
8.4 Thus, from the aforesaid it can be seen that the original
plaintiffs – two co­owners/co­sharers of the entire land in
question fought with respect to the entire land belonging to
the plaintiffs and the co­owners jointly.  It can be said that the
original plaintiffs instituted the suit for themselves as well as
for and/or on behalf of the other co­owners – co­sharers with
respect to the entire land jointly owned by all of them.  Thus,
it can safely be held that the entire estate was represented
through original plaintiffs in which even the co­sharers/coowners   were   also   joined   as   defendants   as   proper   parties.
Therefore,   even   when   the   learned   Trial   Court   passed   the
judgment and decree, it passed the judgment and decree with
27
respect to the entire land and even granted the permanent
injunction   to   protect   the   ownership   and   protection   of   the
plaintiffs as well as the other co­sharers over the suit land.  In
light of the above factual scenario the order passed by the
High Court dated 09.07.2007 in dismissing the first appeal as
a whole as having been abated on not taking step to bring on
record   the   legal   representatives   of   some   of   the   original
defendants/respondents in the appeal is required to be tested
and/or considered in light of the settled legal principles.
9. While   considering   the   impugned   order   passed   by   the
High Court dated 09.07.2007, dismissing the appeal as having
abated,   the   law   on   abatement   and   on   Order   22   CPC   is
required to be discussed.  Order 22 CPC fell for consideration
before   this   Court   in   the   recent   decision   in   the   case   of
Venigalla   Koteswaramman   (supra)  in which   this   Court
considered in detail the earlier decisions of this Court in the
case of  Nathu   Ram   (supra)  as well as the other decisions
including the later decision in the case of Hemareddi (supra).
28
The relevant discussion on Order 22 CPC in paragraphs 42 to
44.8 are extracted as under:
“42. The rules of procedure for dealing with death,
marriage, and insolvency of parties in a civil litigation
are essentially governed by the provisions contained
in Order 22 of the Code.
42.1. Though the provisions in Rule 1 to Rule 10­
A of Order 22 primarily refer to the proceedings in a
suit but, by virtue of Rule 11, the said provisions
apply to the appeals too and, for the purpose of an
appeal, the expressions “plaintiff”, “defendant” and
“suit” could be read as “appellant”, “respondent” and
“appeal” respectively.
42.2. Rule 1 of Order 22 of the Code declares that
the death of a plaintiff or defendant shall not cause
the suit to abate if the right to sue survives. When
read for the purpose of appeal, this provision means
that the death of an appellant or respondent shall
not cause the appeal  to abate  if the right to sue
survives.
42.3. Rule 2 of Order 22 of the Code ordains the
procedure   where   one   of   the   several   plaintiffs   or
defendants   dies   and   right   to   sue   survives   to   the
surviving plaintiff(s) alone, or against the surviving
defendant(s) alone. The same procedure applies in
appeal   where   one   of   the   several   appellants   or
respondents dies and right to sue survives to the
surviving appellant(s) alone, or against the surviving
respondent(s) alone. The procedure is that the Court
is required to cause an entry to that effect to be made
on   record   and   the   appeal   is   to   proceed   at   the
instance of the surviving appellant(s) or against the
surviving respondent(s), as the case may be.
29
42.4. However, by virtue of Rule 4 read with Rule
11 of Order 22 of the Code, in case of death of one of
the several respondents, where right to sue does not
survive   against   the   surviving   respondent   or
respondents   as   also   in   the   case   where   the   sole
respondent dies and the right to sue survives, the
contemplated   procedure   is   that   the   legal
representatives of the deceased respondent are to be
substituted   in   his   place;   and   if   no   application   is
made for such substitution within the time limited by
law,   the   appeal   abates   as   against   the   deceased
respondent.
42.5. Of course, the provisions have been made
for dealing with the application for substitution filed
belatedly but the same need not be elaborated in the
present  case   because   it   remains   an   admitted   fact
that   no   application   for   substitution   of   legal
representatives of Defendant 2 (who was Respondent
3 in AS No. 1887 of 1988) was made before the High
Court.
42.6. The relevant provisions contained in Rules
1, 2, sub­rules (1), (2) and (3) of Rule 4 and Rule 11
of Order 22 could be usefully reproduced as under 
“1. No abatement by party's death, if right to
sue survives.—The death of a plaintiff or defendant
shall not cause the suit to abate if the right to sue
survives.
2. Procedure where one of several plaintiffs or
defendants   dies   and   right   to   sue   survives.—
Where there are more plaintiffs or defendants than
one, and any of them dies, and where the right to sue
survives to the surviving plaintiff or plaintiffs alone,
or   against   the   surviving   defendant   or   defendants
alone, the Court shall cause an entry to that effect to
30
be made on the record, and the suit shall proceed at
the instance of the surviving plaintiff or plaintiffs, or
against the surviving defendant or defendants.
***
4. Procedure in case of death of one of several
defendants or of sole defendant.—(1) Where one of
two or more defendants dies and the right to sue
does not survive against the surviving defendant or
defendants   alone,   or   a   sole   defendant   or   sole
surviving   defendant   dies   and   the   right   to   sue
survives, the Court, on an application made in that
behalf,   shall   cause   the   legal   representative   of   the
deceased defendant to be made a party and shall
proceed with the suit.
(2) Any person so made a party may make any
defence   appropriate   to   his   character   as   legal
representative of the deceased defendant.
(3)   Where   within   the   time   limited   by   law   no
application is made under sub­rule (1), the suit shall
abate as against the deceased defendant.
***
11. Application   of   Order   to   appeals.—In   the
application of this Order to appeals, so far as may be,
the   word   “plaintiff”   shall   be   held   to   include   an
appellant, the word “defendant” a respondent, and
the word “suit” an appeal.”
43. For   determining   if   Order   22   Rule   2   could
apply, we have to examine if right to sue survived
against the surviving respondents. It is not the case
that no legal heirs were available for Defendant 2. It
is also not the case where the estate of the deceased
Defendant 2 passed on to the remaining parties by
survivorship or otherwise. Therefore, applicability of
Order 22 Rule 2 CPC is clearly ruled out.
31
44. Admittedly,   steps   were   not   taken   for
substitution of the legal representatives of Defendant
2, who was Respondent 3 in AS No. 1887 of 1988.
Therefore, sub­rule (3) of Rule 4 of Order 22 of the
Code   directly   came   into   operation   and   the   said
appeal filed by Defendants 16 to 18 abated against
Defendant   2   (Respondent   3   therein).   We   may
profitably recapitulate at this juncture that in fact,
the other appeal filed by Defendants 4, 13 and 14 (AS
No. 1433 of 1989) was specifically dismissed by the
High Court as against the deceased Defendant 2 on
25­4­2006.
44.1. Once it is  found that the appeal  filed  by
Defendants 16 to 18 abated as against Defendant 2
(Respondent 3), the question arises as to whether
that   appeal   could   have   proceeded   against   the
surviving   respondents   i.e.   the   plaintiff   and
Defendants 1 and 3 (who were Respondents 1, 2 and
4). For dealing with this question, we may usefully
refer to the relevant principles, concerning the effect
of abatement of appeal against one respondent in
case   of   multiple   respondents,   as   enunciated   and
explained by this Court.
44.2. The   relevant   principles   were   stated   and
explained   in   depth   by   this   Court   in State   of
Punjab v. Nathu Ram [State of Punjab v. Nathu Ram,
AIR   1962   SC   89].   In   that   case,   the   Punjab
Government   had   acquired   certain   pieces   of   land
belonging to two brothers jointly. Upon their refusal
to accept the compensation offered, their joint claim
was referred to arbitration and an award was passed
in   their   favour   that   was   challenged   by   the   State
Government in appeal before the High Court. During
pendency of appeal, one of the brothers died but no
application was filed within time to bring on record
his legal representatives. The High Court dismissed
32
[Province   of   East   Punjab v. Labhu   Ram,   1954   SCC
OnLine P&H 132] the appeal while observing that it
had   abated   against   the   deceased   brother   and
consequently, abated against the surviving brother
too.   The   order   so   passed   by   the   High   Court   was
questioned before this Court in appeal by certificate
of fitness.
44.3. While dismissing the appeal and affirming
the views of the High Court, this Court in Nathu Ram
case [State of Punjab v. Nathu Ram, AIR 1962 SC 89]
enunciated   the   principles   concerning   the   effect   of
abatement and explained as to why, in case of joint
and   indivisible   decree,   the   appeal   against   the
surviving   respondent(s)   cannot   be   proceeded   with
and has to be dismissed as a result of its abatement
against the deceased respondent; the basic reason
being that in the absence of the legal representatives
of deceased respondent, the appellate court cannot
determine   between   the   appellant   and   the   legal
representatives anything which may affect the rights
of the legal representatives. This Court pointed out
that   by   abatement   of   appeal   qua   the   deceased
respondent, the decree between the appellant and the
deceased respondent becomes final and the appellate
court cannot, in any way modify that decree, directly
or indirectly.
44.4. The Court observed in that case, inter alia,
as under: (Nathu Ram case [State of Punjab v. Nathu
Ram, AIR 1962 SC 89] , AIR pp. 90­91, paras 4­6 &
8)
“4. It is not disputed that in view of Order 22 Rule
4, Civil Procedure Code, hereinafter called the Code,
the   appeal   abated   against   Labhu   Ram,   deceased,
when no application for bringing on record his legal
representatives   had   been   made   within   the   time
33
limited by law. The Code does not provide for the
abatement   of   the   appeal   against   the   other
respondents.   Courts   have   held   that   in   certain
circumstances,   the   appeals   against   the   corespondents   would   also   abate   as   a   result   of   the
abatement   of   the   appeal   against   the   deceased
respondent. They have not been always agreed with
respect to the result of the particular circumstances
of   a   case   and   there   has   been,   consequently,
divergence   of   opinion   in   the   application   of   the
principle. It will serve no useful purpose to consider
the cases. Suffice it to say that when Order 22 Rule 4
does not provide for the abatement of the appeals
against   the   co­respondents   of   the   deceased
respondent there can be no question of abatement of
the appeals against them. To say that the appeals
against them abated in certain circumstances, is not
a correct statement. Of course, the appeals against
them cannot proceed in certain circumstances and
have   therefore   to   be   dismissed.   Such   a   result
depends on the nature of the relief sought in the
appeal.
5. The same conclusion is to be drawn from the
provisions   of   Order   1   Rule   9   of   the   Code   which
provides that no suit shall be defeated by reason of
the misjoinder or non­joinder of parties and the court
may,   in   every   suit,   deal   with   the   matter   in
controversy so far as regards the rights and interests
of the parties actually before it. It follows, therefore,
that   if   the   court   can   deal   with   the   matter   in
controversy so far as regards the rights and interests
of the appellant and the respondents other than the
deceased   respondent,   it   has   to   proceed   with   the
appeal and decide it. It is only when it is not possible
for the court to deal with such matters, that it will
have to refuse to proceed further with the appeal and
therefore dismiss it.
34
6. The question whether a court can deal with
such matters or not, will depend on the facts of each
case and therefore no exhaustive statement can be
made about the circumstances when this is possible
or is not possible. It may, however, be stated that
ordinarily   the   considerations   which   weigh   with   the
court in deciding upon this question are whether the
appeal between the appellants and the respondents
other than the deceased can be said to be properly
constituted or can be said to have all the necessary
parties for the decision of the controversy before the
court. The test to determine this has been described in
diverse forms. Courts will not proceed with an appeal
(a) when the success of the appeal may lead to the
court's coming to a decision which be in conflict with
the decision between the appellant and the deceased
respondent   and   therefore   which   would   lead   to   the
court's passing a decree which will be contradictory to
the decree which had become final with respect to the
same subject­matter between the appellant and the
deceased respondent; (b) when the appellant could not
have   brought   the   action   for   the   necessary   relief
against those respondents alone who are still before
the   court;   and   (c)   when   the   decree   against   the
surviving   respondents,   if   the   appeal   succeeds,   be
ineffective, that is to say, it could not be successfully
executed.
***
8. The difficulty arises always when there is a joint
decree. Here again, the consensus of opinion is that if
the decree is joint and indivisible, the appeal against
the other respondents also will not be proceeded with
and   will   have   to   be   dismissed   as   a   result   of   the
abatement   of   the   appeal   against   the   deceased
respondent. Different views exist in the case of joint
decrees in favour of respondents whose rights in the
subject­matter of the decree are specified. One view
35
is that in such cases, the abatement of the appeal
against the deceased respondent will have the result
of making the decree affecting his specific interest to
be   final   and   that   the   decree   against   the   other
respondents   can   be   suitably   dealt   with   by   the
appellate court. We do not consider this view correct.
The   specification   of   shares   or   of   interest   of   the
deceased respondent does not affect the nature of the
decree and the capacity of the joint decree­holder to
execute the entire decree or to resist the attempt of
the   other   party   to   interfere   with   the   joint   right
decreed in his favour. The abatement of an appeal
means not only that the decree between the appellant
and the deceased respondent has become final, but
also, as a necessary corollary, that the appellate court
cannot, in any way, modify that decree directly or
indirectly. The reason is plain. It is that in the absence
of   the   legal   representatives   of   the   deceased
respondent,   the   appellate   court   cannot   determine
anything   between   the   appellant   and   the   legal
representatives   which   may   affect   the   rights   of   the
legal   representatives   under   the   decree. It   is
immaterial that the modification which the Court will
do is one to which exception can or cannot be taken.”
9.1 After referring to the decision of this Court in the case of
Nathu   Ram   (supra),  in   the   case   of  Vennigalla
Koteswaramma   vs.   Malampati   Suryamba   and   Others,
(2003)   3   SCC   272, it  is observed by this  Court that the
nature and extent of the abatement in a given case and the
decision to be taken thereon will depend upon the facts of
36
each   case  and,  therefore,  no   exhaustive  statement   can   be
made either way and that the decision will ultimately depend
upon the fact whether the decree obtained was a joint decree
or a separate one.   It is further observed that this question
cannot and should not also be tested merely on the format of
the decree under challenge or it being one or the manner in
which it was dealt with before or by the Court which passed it.
Thus, as observed and held by the Court:
(i) The death of a plaintiff or defendant shall not cause
the suit to abate if the right to sue survives;
(ii) If there are more plaintiffs or defendants than one,
and any of them dies, and where the right to sue
survives to the surviving plaintiff or plaintiffs alone, or
against the surviving defendant or defendants alone,
the Court shall cause an entry to that effect to be
made on the record, and the suit shall proceed at the
instance   of   the   surviving   plaintiff   or   plaintiffs,   or
against the surviving defendant or defendants (Order
22 Rule 2);
37
(iii) where one of two or more defendants dies and the
right to sue does not survive against the surviving
defendant or defendants alone, or a sole defendant or
sole   surviving   defendant  dies   and   the   right   to   sue
survives, the Court, on an application made in that
behalf,   shall   cause   the   legal   representative   of   the
deceased   defendant   to   be   made   a   party   and   shall
proceed with the suit.  Where within the time limited
by law no application is made under sub­rule 1 of
Order 22 Rule 4, the suit shall abate as against the
deceased defendant;
(iv) the   provision   of   Order   22   shall   also   apply   to   the
appeal proceedings also.
9.2 As   observed   and   held   by  this   Court  in   the   aforesaid
decisions   while   considering   whether   the   suit/appeal   has
abated   due   to   non­bringing   the   legal   representatives   of
plaintiffs/defendants or not, the Court has to examine if the
right   to   sue   survives   against   the   surviving   respondents.
Thereafter the Appellate Court has to consider the question
whether non­bringing the legal representatives of some of the
38
defendants,   the   appeal   could   have   proceeded   against   the
surviving respondents.  Therefore, the Appellate Court has to
consider the effect of abatement of the appeal against each of
the respondents in case of multiple respondents.
9.3 Applying the law laid down by this Court in the aforesaid
decisions   to   the   impugned   judgment   and   order   dated
09.07.2007 passed by the High Court, it appears that the
High Court has mechanically and without holding any further
enquiry   which   was   required   to   be   conducted   as   observed
hereinabove, has simply dismissed the entire appeal as having
abated due to non­bringing on record the legal representatives
of some of the respondents – the original defendants who, as
such,   neither   contested   the   suit   nor   filed   the   written
statements.   At the cost of repetition, it is observed that as
such   the   original   plaintiffs   instituted   the   suit   being   coowners/co­sharers   and   for   and   on   behalf   of   all   the   coowners/co­sharers of the entire land sought to be acquired
under the Land Acquisition Act.
39
9.4 As observed and held by this Court in the case of  K.
Vishwanathan   Pillai   (supra),  the co­owner is as much an
owner of the entire property as a sole owner of the property.
No co­owner has a definite right, title and interest in any
particular item or a portion thereof.  On the other hand, he
has right, title and interest in every part and parcel of the
joint   property.     He   owns   several   parts   of   the   composite
property along with others and it cannot be said that he is
only a part owner or a fractional owner in the property.  It is
observed that, therefore, one co­owner can file a suit and
recover the property against strangers and the decree would
enure to all the co­owners.   The aforesaid principle of law
would be applicable in the appeal also.  Thus, in the instant
case, when the original plaintiffs – two co­owners instituted
the suit with respect to the entire suit land jointly owned by
the plaintiffs as well as defendants nos. 9 to 39 and when
some of the defendants/respondents in appeal died, it can be
said that estate is represented by others – more particularly
the plaintiffs/heirs of the plaintiffs and it cannot be said that
on not bringing the legal representatives of the some of the co40
sharers   –   defendants   –   respondents   in   appeal   the   appeal
would abate as a whole.
9.5 While passing the impugned order dated 09.07.2007, the
High Court has neither considered the relevant provisions of
CPC namely Order 22 Rule 1 to 11 nor held any enquiry
which was required to be conducted as observed hereinabove.
9.6 One another important aspect which is also required to
be noted is that the suit was filed challenging the acquisition
proceedings under the Land Acquisition Act, that too, with
respect to the land in question.   It was the specific case on
behalf of the appellant and even the issue was framed by the
learned Trial Court on the jurisdiction of the Civil Court to
entertain   the   suit   challenging   the   acquisition   proceedings
under the Land Acquisition Act.  From the findings recorded
by the learned Trial Court, it appears that though the learned
Trial   Court  held  the   issue   of   jurisdiction   in   favour  of  the
appellant   herein,   still   thereafter   it   granted   the   relief   and
decreed the suit which was the subject matter before the High
Court.  Thus, according to the appellant ­ DDA – the judgment
and decree passed by the learned Trial Court was a nullity
41
and wholly without jurisdiction.  If that be so, then, another
question which may be required to be considered is, when the
original plaintiffs/legal heirs are on record, can it be said that
the entire appeal has abated, if in the appeal it is held that the
decree was a nullity and/or wholly without jurisdiction then
the   decree  will   be   nullity  for  all   purposes.     The  aforesaid
aspect is also required to be determined. 
9.7 In any case what would have been the consequences of
not   bringing   the   legal   representatives   of   some   of   the
respondents/defendants who died during the pendency of the
appeal   and   whether   the   right   to   sue   survives   against   the
original   plaintiffs   and/or   surviving   respondents/defendants
was to be considered by the High Court, which the High Court
failed to consider in the instant case.
10. In view of the above discussion and for the reason stated
above both these appeals succeed.  The impugned judgment
and   order   passed   by   the   High   Court   dated   09.07.2007
dismissing the appeal as a whole as having abated for not
bringing   the   legal   representatives   of   some   of   the
42
respondents/original   defendants   who   died   during   the
pendency of the appeal is hereby set aside.  The High Court to
consider the Appeal now in accordance with law and on its
own merits and in light of the observations made hereinabove,
more particularly, the High Court shall have to consider and
hold   an   enquiry,   whether,   on   the   death   of   some   of   the
respondents in the appeal (defendants in suit) the right to sue
against   the   remaining   respondents   –   original   plaintiffs/the
remaining original defendants would survive or not including
the   fact   that   the   estate   is   being   represented   by   surviving
original   plaintiffs/heirs   of   the   original   plaintiffs/surviving
defendants having a bearing on the enquiry to be held. 
With these observations the present Appeals are Allowed
accordingly to the aforesaid extent.   However, there shall be
no order as to costs.
…………………………………J.
             (M. R. SHAH)
…………………………………J.
                                                  (B.V. NAGARATHNA)
New Delhi, 
July 11, 2022.
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