28 April 2022 5:02 AM GMT
The Andhra Pradesh High Court recently ruled that unilateral cancellation of a registered gift deed by donor does not affect the rights of the donee as it is contrary to the law under Registration Act."Cancellation of gift deed unilaterally by donor is contrary to the Rules under the Registration Act. Thus, cancellation does not affect the right of the respondents/plaintiffs," Bench...
The Andhra Pradesh High Court recently ruled that unilateral cancellation of a registered gift deed by donor does not affect the rights of the donee as it is contrary to the law under Registration Act.
"Cancellation of gift deed unilaterally by donor is contrary to the Rules under the Registration Act. Thus, cancellation does not affect the right of the respondents/plaintiffs," Bench of Justice Subba Reddy Satti held.
It added that in such cases, the latin maxim nemo dat quad non habit applies squarely, meaning No person can convey better title than what he has.
Brief Facts of the Case
The plaintiffs, sisters, filed the suit to declare their title and for recovery of possession. In the plaint, it was contended that the plaint schedule property originally belonged to the mother of plaintiffs and that their mother executed a registered gift settlement deed in 2003 reserving life interest and vested remainder to the plaintiffs. Their mother died in 2012, and hence the schedule property devolved upon the plaintiffs being vested remainder holders. However, the defendant who was allowed to cultivate the plaint schedule property during the life of mother pleaded that he purchased the schedule property and refused to deliver the property.
The defendant in his written statement stated that he was the bonafide purchaser of plaint schedule property under a registered sale deed in 2011. He contended that the registered gift settlement deed was revoked by revocation deed as it was a conditional gift and since the plaintiffs failed to comply with the condition to maintain their mother, the deceased revoked the gift deed. Furthermore, it was argued that delivery of property was sine qua non for valid gift deed under Section 123 of the Transfer of Property Act, 1882. The trial court decreed the suit in favour of the plaintiffs and the same was confirmed by the First Appellate Court. The defendant filed the Second Appeal and raised questions of law.
Issues of Law
1. Whether delivery of property is sine qua non under Section 12 of Transfer of Property Act for a valid gift deed
2. Whether a registered gift deed can be revoked without the consent of the donee? If so, such unilateral cancellation binds the donee?
Ruling of the Court
The Court placed reliance on the Supreme Court decision in Renikuntla Rajamma v. K. Sarwanamma, (2014) in which it was held that "transfer of possession" of the property covered by the registered instrument of the gift duly signed by the donor and attested as required is not a sine qua non for the making of a valid gift under the provisions of the TP Act.
Furthermore, revocation of registered Gift Deed unilaterally after 7 ½ years without notice to donees is contrary to the rules under the Registration Act. The cancellation does not affect the right of the plaintiffs in light of the principle laid down in Kolii Rajesh Chowdary v. State of Andhra Pradesh (2019) as herein below:
"There cannot be a unilateral cancellation of registered document and that a cancellation deed cancelling a registered document can be registered only after the same is cancelled by a competent Civil Court, after notice to the parties concerned, and that in the absence of any declaration by a competent Court or notice to parties, the execution of deed of cancellation as well as its registration are wholly void and nonest."
On the basis of above principles of law, the second appeal was dismissed.
Case Title: Chelluboyina. Nagaraju Versus Molleti Ramudu alias Vijayalakshmi
Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (AP) 66
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