6 July 2023 10:28 AM GMT
It is anathema in this day and age to diminish the autonomous status of a woman by treating her “merely as an adjunct to her husband”, least of all in relation to what the law recognises to be her absolute property, the Delhi High Court observed on Thursday.Justice Anup Jairam Bhambhani allowed an application moved by a wife under Order VII Rule 11 of the Code of Civil Procedure,...
It is anathema in this day and age to diminish the autonomous status of a woman by treating her “merely as an adjunct to her husband”, least of all in relation to what the law recognises to be her absolute property, the Delhi High Court observed on Thursday.
Justice Anup Jairam Bhambhani allowed an application moved by a wife under Order VII Rule 11 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, seeking rejection of a plaint for a decree of permanent injunction to restrain her and her husband from creating any third-party rights in respect of a property situated in city’s Rajouri Garden.
It was the case of the plaintiffs that the property in question was a “partnership property” belonging to the partnership firm in which they were partners. They claimed that it was a joint property between them and the couple, both sides having a 50% share.
It was also claimed by the plaintiffs that the funds of their partnership firm were used for purchasing the subject property as the woman had no income of her own. It was their case that the property was purchased from the erstwhile owners of the partnership firm in the name of the woman and was held by her only in a fiduciary capacity vis-à-vis them since her husband was a partner of the firm.
On the other hand, the woman contended that there were no specifics, particulars or support for any of the claims raised by the plaintiffs, either by way of clear averments in the plaint or by reference to the documents filed on record.
Rejecting the plaint, Justice Bhambhani noted that the subject property stood in the sole name of the woman as her absolute property.
The court noted that there was no averment in the plaint that the sale deed placed any restriction saying that the property would not be held by the woman as sole and absolute owner.
“In view of the clear mandate of the section 14 of the Hindu Succession Act therefore, as a matter of law, defendant No.2 holds the subject property as full owner and not as a limited owner, and no averment in the plaint detracts from this position," said the court.
On the plaintiffs’ submission regarding the woman’s fiduciary relationship, the court said that there is no support for the proposition that a partner’s wife becomes a partner by operation of any law or otherwise.
“It therefore follows, that merely because defendant No. 2 is the wife of a partner of the firm, she does not ipso-facto become a partner of the firm, inter-alia since as per section 5 of the Partnership Act, a relationship of partnership arises from contract and not from status of the parties,” the court said.
It added: “In fact it is anathema in this day and age to diminish the autonomous status of a woman by treating her merely as an adjunct to her husband, least of all in relation to what the law recognises to be her absolute property.”
The court also said that the suit was way beyond the limitation of three years as stipulated in Article 59 of the Schedule of the Limitation Act as the suit was filed after 21 years for challenging a sale deed which was admittedly executed in March 1992.
“In the above view of the matter, this court is persuaded to hold that the plaint does not disclose any cause of action that requires trial. Furthermore, this court is of the opinion that applying the position of law as cited above, the reliefs claimed in the plaint are also clearly barred by law, as discussed above,” the court said.
Title: SHRI CHARANJEET SINGH & ANR. v. SHRI HARVINDER SINGH & ANR.
Citation: 2023 LiveLaw (Del) 561
Click Here To Read Order