“mis-joinder of parties and causes of action”. In Para (1) of the application, it was categorically mentioned that there was mis-joinder of parties and causes of action.-The trial court in its order dated 17.08.2011 has also clearly held that plaintiff has clubbed different causes of action which is to be deleted from the present suit. The trial court further held that the plaintiff is not justified in including different properties and separate cause of actions combining in single suit.


Hon’ble Mr. Justice Ashok Bhushan

REPORTABLE
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CIVIL APPEAL NO.1052 OF 2019
SHIVNARAYAN (D) BY LRS. …APPELLANT(S)
VERSUS
MANIKLAL (D)THR. LRS. & ORS. …RESPONDENT(S)
J U D G M E N T
ASHOK BHUSHAN,J.
This appeal has been filed by the appellant
against the judgment of High Court of Madhya Pradesh
dated 13.11.2013 by which judgment writ petition
filed by the appellant challenging the order dated
17.08.2011 of the III Additional District Judge,
Indore in Civil Suit No.60-A of 2010 has been upheld
dismissing the writ petition.

  1. Brief facts of the case necessary to be noticed
    for deciding this appeal are:-
    2.1 The appellant filed Civil Suit No.60-A of
    2010 before the District Judge praying for
    1
    declaring various transfer documents as null
    and void with regard to suit property
    mentioned in Para No. 1A and Para No.1B of
    the plaint. Plaintiff also prayed for
    declaration that suit properties mentioned
    in Para Nos.1A and 1B are Joint Family
    Property of plaintiff and defendant Nos. 1
    to 3 and plaintiff is entitled to receive
    1/3rd part of the suit property. A Will
    executed by one Lt. Smt. Vimal Vaidya was
    also sought to be declared to be null and
    void. Certain other reliefs were claimed in
    the suit. The parties shall be referred to
    as described in the suit. The plaintiff in
    Para No.2 of the plaint has set the
    following genealogy of the parties:-
    “Kaluram Bairulal Vaidya
    (Since Deceased dt. 15/08/1969)
    Shankarlal Maniklal Babulal Shivnarayan
    (20/04/98) (Dft. No.1) (4/11/75)
    (Plaintiff)
    (Deceased) (Deceased)
    Vimal
    Leelbai Sushilaben (25.11.2007)
    Def. No.2 Def. No.3 (Wife of Deceased)”
    2
    2.2 In Para No.1 of the plaint, description of
    the property was mentioned to the following
    effect:-
    1.A) Plot No. SP 79, Sudama
    Nagar Indore (M.P.) size 30
    ft. X 50 ft. area 1500 Sq. Ft.
    through membership no. 2905 of
    Shikshak Kalyar Samiti, Sudama
    Nagar, Indore.
    B) Bombay Suburban District S.
    No. 341, Pt. of Bandra Grant
    Flat No.C/1/3, Sahitya Sahavas
    Co-op. Housing Society, Second
    Floor, building known as
    “Abhang” Bandra (E), Mumbai400 051 situated on the plot
    bearing no. C.T.S. No. 629,
    (S. No. 341-A.B.S.D.)
    Madhusudan Kalekar Marg,
    Gandhinagar, Bandra (East)
    Mumbai – 51.
    2.3 The plaintiff sought relief with regard to
    two properties (hereinafter referred to as
    Indore property, situate at Indore, State of
    Madhya Pradesh and Mumbai property situate at
    Mumbai, State of Maharashtra). Plaintiff’s
    case in the plaint was that Indore Property
    was purchased by plaintiff’s father in the
    year 1968-1969. Plaintiff’s father died on
    15.08.1969. Thereafter, Indore property was
    joint family property of the plaintiff and
    defendant Nos. 1 to 3. Plaintiff’s brother
    3
    Babulal shifted to Pune. Babulal was
    allotted Mumbai property under a Government
    Scheme for extraordinary persons like writers
    and educationist. Babulal died in the year
  2. Thereafter, the Mumbai property, on
    the basis of succession certificate issued by
    Court of Civil Judge (Senior Division), Pune
    came in the name of widow of Babulal, Smt.
    Vimal Vaidya. Smt. Vimal Vaidya transferred
    the Mumbai flat by sale deed dated 15.10.2007
    in favour of defendant Nos. 7 and 8. It was
    further pleaded in the plaint that Smt. Vimal
    Vaidya also dealt with Indore Property. The
    name of Smt. Vimal Vaidya was mutated in the
    year 1986 in the Indore property and
    thereafter she transferred the Indore
    property in favour of defendant Nos. 9 and
  3. One set of pleadings was with regard to
    a Will executed in the year 2000 by Smt.
    Vimal Vaidya in favour of defendant Nos. 4 to
  4. On aforesaid pleadings, following reliefs
    were prayed in Para No. 25 of the plaint:-
    “A) The property mentioned in Para
    No.1 of the Plaint and its deed
    4
    of transfer documents be declared
    null and void which is not
    binding on the part of the
    plaintiff.
    B) The property mentioned in Para
    No.1B of Plaint and document
    related to its registered deed to
    transfer be declared null and
    void and which is not binding on
    the part of Plaintiff.
    C) The property mentioned in Para
    No. 1A and 1B of the Plaint is
    joint family property of the
    Plaintiff and defendant No. 1 to
    3 be declared joint family
    property and Plaintiffs right to
    receive 1/3 part of the suit
    property.
    D) Court Commissioner be appointed to
    make division of suit property
    and 1/3 part possession be given
    to the Plaintiff.
    E) During the hearing of the suit
    injunction order be passed in
    respect of the property not to
    create third party interest by
    the Defendants.
    F) Plaintiff’s suit be declared
    decreed with the expenses.
    G) To grant any other relief which
    this Hon’ble Court may be fit in
    the interest of justice.
    H) The forged will executed by Late
    Vimal Vaidya under influence of
    defendant No. 4 and his
    associates relatives Defendant
    No. 5 and 6 and other relatives
    of Kher family. Because, Late
    Babulal Vaidya was a member of
    5
    undivided Hindu family.
    Therefore, Late. Vimal Vaidya was
    not authorized to execute that
    alleged will as per the Law.
    Therefore, the registered alleged
    will be declared null and void
    and be declared that it is not
    binding on the part of the
    Plaintiff.”
    2.4 The defendant Nos. 7 and 8 appeared in suit
    and filed an application with the heading
    “application for striking out pleadings and
    dismissing suit against defendants No.7 and 8
    for want of it territorial jurisdiction and
    mis-joinder of parties and causes of action.”
    The defendant Nos. 7 and 8 pleaded that for
    property being situated at Bandra East,
    Mumbai, the Court at Indore has no
    territorial jurisdiction. It was further
    pleaded by the defendant that suit suffers
    fatally from mis-joinder of parties as well
    as causes of action. The defendant Nos. 7
    and 8 pleaded that there is no nexus at all
    between the two properties – one situate at
    Indore and other at Mumbai. Details of
    different causes of action and nature of the
    properties, details of purchasers for both
    6
    different sale transactions have been
    explained in detail in Para No. 6 of the
    application. It was further pleaded that
    Mumbai property does not form asset of any
    Hindu Undivided Family. Mumbai property was
    acquired by Babulal in his own name and after
    his death on the basis of succession, it has
    come to his sole heir Smt. Vimal Vaidya in
    the year 1975. It was pleaded that no part
    of the cause of action for the Mumbai
    property took place in Indore. In the
    application, following reliefs has been
    prayed for by the defendant Nos. 7 and 8:-
    “(a) All the pleadings and the relief
    clauses relating to the property
    situate at Mumbai may kindly be
    ordered to be struck off from
    the plaint, in exercise of
    powers conferred on this Hon’ble
    Court under Order 6 Rule 16 of
    the Civil Procedure Code, and as
    a consequence the suit against
    the defendants No.7 and 8 may
    kindly be dismissed with costs
    for the answering defendants;
    while the Suit relating to the
    Indore property may be continued
    if otherwise round maintainable
    under the law;
    OR in the alternative,
    7
    An order may kindly be passed
    declining to entertain the part
    of the suit relating to the
    property in Mumbai with costs
    for the answering defendants;
    and
    (b) Such other order may kindly be
    passed as may be deemed
    appropriate in the circumstances
    of the case.”
    2.5 The trial court after hearing the parties on
    the application dated 19.03.2011 filed by the
    defendant Nos. 8 and 9 passed an order dated
    17.08.2011 allowed the application. An order
    was passed deleting the property mentioned In
    Para No. 1B of the plaint and the relief
    sought with regard to the said property. The
    trial court held that separate cause of
    actions cannot be combined in a single suit.
    2.6 Aggrieved by the order of the trial court, a
    writ petition was filed in the High Court,
    which too has been dismissed by the High
    Court vide its order dated 13.11.2013
    affirming the order of the trial court. High
    Court referring to Section 17 of the Civil
    Procedure Code, 1908 held that for property
    situated at Mumbai, the trial court committed
    8
    no error in allowing the application filed by
    defendant Nos. 7 and 8. The plaintiffappellant aggrieved by the order of the High
    court has come up in this appeal.
  5. We have heard Shri Vinay Navare for the
    appellant. Shri Chinmoy Khaladkar has appeared for
    respondent Nos. 7 and 8.
  6. Learned counsel for the appellant submits that
    High Court did not correctly interpret Section 17 of
    the Code of Civil Procedure. The partition suit
    filed by the appellant with regard to Mumbai and
    Indore properties was fully maintainable. He submits
    that Order II Rule 2 of CPC mandates that the
    plaintiff must include the whole claim in respect of
    a cause of action in the suit. The cause of action
    claimed by the plaintiff was denial of the
    plaintiff’s right to share in the Joint Family
    Property. Restrictive interpretation of Section 17
    will do violence to the mandate of Order II Rule 2.
    Section 39(1)(c) of the CPC itself contemplate that
    there can be a decree of an immovable property, which
    is situated outside the local limits of the
    9
    jurisdiction. The words “immovable property”’ used in
    Section 17 is to be interpreted by applying Section
    13 of the General Clauses Act. It provides that in
    all Central Acts and Regulations, unless the context
    and subject otherwise requires, “any singular term
    shall include plural”. In event, it is accepted that
    with regard to separate properties situated in
    different jurisdictions, separate suits have to be
    filed that shall result in conflicting findings of
    different Courts and shall involve the principles of
    res judicata.
  7. Learned counsel appearing for defendant Nos. 8
    and 9 refuting the submissions of learned counsel for
    the appellant contends that no error has been
    committed by trial court in deleting the property at
    Para No.1B in the plaint as well as pleadings and
    reliefs with regard to said property. It is
    submitted that Section 17 of the CPC contemplate
    filing of a suit with respect to immovable property
    situated in jurisdiction of different courts only
    when any portion of the property is situated in the
    jurisdiction of a Court, where suit has to be filed.
    The word “any portion of the property” indicate that
    10
    property has to be one whose different portions may
    be situated in jurisdiction of two or more Courts.
    He further submits that there is no common cause of
    action with regard to property situate at Indore and
    property situate at Mumbai. Transfer deed with
    regard to Indore Property as well as transfer deeds
    of Mumbai property are different. The purchasers of
    both the properties, i.e. Indore property and Mumbai
    property are also different. According to pleadings
    in the plaint itself, the Mumbai property was
    purchased by Babulal, the husband of Smt. Vimla
    Vaidya in his own name, which after death of Babulal
    in the year 1975 was mutated in the name of Smt.
    Vimla Vaidya. The plaintiff has sought to club
    different cause of actions in one suit. There is
    mis-joinder of the parties also in the suit since the
    defendants pertaining to different transactions have
    been impleaded in one suit whereas there is no nexus
    with the properties, transactions and persons.
    Learned counsel for the defendant Nos. 8 and 9
    submits that by order of Court of Civil Judge (Senior
    Division), Pune, the property is already mutated in
    the year 1975 in the name of Smt. Vimla Vaidya after
    11
    death of her husband, which was rightfully
    transferred by her to defendant Nos. 8 and 9 on
    15.10.2007. It is submitted that the Court at Indore
    might proceed with the property at Indore with the
    defendants, who are related to Indore property but
    suit pertaining to Mumbai property, transactions
    relating thereto and defendants relating to Mumbai
    property have rightly been struck off from the case.
  8. Before we consider the submissions of the learned
    counsel for the parties, relevant provisions
    pertaining to place of suing as contained in Code of
    Civil Procedure needs to be noted. Section 15 to
    Section 20 contains a heading “place of suing”.
    Section 16 provides that Suits to be instituted where
    subject-matter situate. Section 16 is as follows:-
  9. Suits to be instituted where subjectmatter situate.–Subject to the pecuniary
    or other limitations prescribed by any law,
    suits-
    (a) for the recovery of immovable
    property with or without rent or
    profits,
    (b) for the partition of immovable
    property,
    (c) for foreclosure, sale or
    redemption in the case of a
    12
    mortgage of or charge upon
    immovable property,
    (d) for the determination of any
    other right to or interest in
    immovable property,
    (e) for compensation for wrong to
    immovable property,
    (f) for the recovery of movable
    property actually under
    distraint or attachment,
    shall be instituted in the Court
    within the local limits of whose
    jurisdiction the property is
    situate:
    Provided that a suit to obtain relief
    respecting, or compensation for wrong to,
    immovable property held by or on behalf of
    the defendant, may where the relief sought
    can be entirely obtained through his
    personal obedience, be instituted either in
    the Court within the local limits of whose
    jurisdiction the property is situate, or in
    the Court within the local limits of whose
    jurisdiction the defendant actually and
    voluntarily resides, or carries on
    business, or personally works for gain.
    Explanation.– In this section “property”
    means property situate in India.
  10. Section 17, which falls for consideration in the
    present case, deals with suits for immovable property
    situate within jurisdiction of different courts is as
    follows:-
  11. Suits for immovable property situate
    within jurisdiction of different Courts.–
    Where a suit is to obtain relief
    13
    respecting, or compensation for wrong to,
    immovable property situate within the
    jurisdiction of different Court, the suit
    may be instituted in any Court within the
    local limits of whose jurisdiction any
    portion of the property is situate :
    Provided that, in respect of the value
    of the subject matter of the suit, the
    entire claim is cognizable by such Court.
  12. We need to notice the Scheme under Code of Civil
    Procedure as delineated by Sections 16 and 17.
    Section 16 provides that suit shall be instituted in
    the Court within the local limits of whose
    jurisdiction the property is situated. Section 16(b)
    mentions “for the partition of immovable property”.
  13. Now, we look into Section 17, which deals with
    suits for immovable property situated within
    jurisdiction of different Courts. As per Section 17,
    the suit may be instituted in any Court within the
    local limits of whose jurisdiction any portion of the
    property is situated. What is the meaning of the
    word “any portion of the property”? There may be a
    fact situation where immovable property is a big
    chunk of land, which falls into territorial
    jurisdiction of two courts in which fact situation in
    Court in whose jurisdiction any portion of property
    14
    is situated can entertain the suit. Whether Section
    17 applies only when a composite property spread in
    jurisdiction of two Courts or Section 17 contemplate
    any wider situation. One of the submissions of the
    learned counsel for the appellant is that the word
    “property” as occurring in Section 17 shall also
    include the plural as per Section 13 of General
    Clauses Act, 1897. Section 13 of the General Clauses
    Act provides:-
  14. Gender and number.-In all Central Acts
    and Regulations, unless there is anything
    repugnant in the subject or context.-
    (1) Words importing the masculine gender
    shall be taken to include females; and
    (2) words in the singular shall include
    the plural, and vice versa.
  15. Applying Section 13 of General Clauses Act, the
    Bombay High Court explaining the word “property” used
    in Section 17 held that it includes properties. We
    are also of the same view that the word “property”
    used in Section 17 can be more than one property or
    properties.
  16. The word “property” under Section 17 of the Civil
    Procedure code may also be properties, hence, in a
    15
    schedule of plaint, more than one property can be
    included. Section 17 can be applied in event there
    are several properties, one or more of which may be
    located in different jurisdiction of courts. The
    word “portion of the property” occurring in Section
    17 has to be understood in context of more than one
    property also, meaning thereby one property out of a
    lot of several properties can be treated as portion
    of the property as occurring in Section 17. Thus,
    interpretation of word “portion of the property”
    cannot only be understood in a limited and
    restrictive sense of being portion of one property
    situated in jurisdiction of two courts.
  17. We now look into the decisions of various Courts
    in reference to Section 17 of Civil Procedure Code.
    How the word “property” and “portion of the property”
    occurring in Section 17 has been understood by
    different High Courts. There are few decisions of
    the Privy Council also where Section 17 of the Civil
    Procedure Code came for consideration. In Nilkanth
    Balwant Natu and Others Vs. Vidya Narasinh Bharathi
    Swami and Others, AIR 1930 PC 188, Privy Council had
    occasion to consider Section 17 of Civil Procedure
    16
    Code. The properties in respect of which relief was
    sought by the plaintiff were situated in Satara,
    Belgaum and Kolhapur. Although Satara and Belgaum
    were situated in British India but Kolhapur was not.
    The Privy Council after noticing the provision of
    Sections 17 and 16(c) laid down following:-
    “The learned Judge had jurisdiction to
    try the suit so far as it related to the
    mortgaged properties situate in Satara;
    and, inasmuch as the mortgaged properties
    in Belgaum are within the jurisdiction of a
    different Court in British India, he had
    jurisdiction to deal with those properties
    also.”
  18. The Privy Council, thus, held that Satara Court
    had jurisdiction to entertain suit with regard to
    property situated at Satara and Belgaum whereas it
    has no jurisdiction to entertain suit pertaining to
    Kolhapur, which was not in the British India. In
    another case of Privy Council, Nrisingha Charan Nandy
    Choudhry Vs. Rajniti Prasad Singh and Others, AIR
    1936 PC 189, mortgage lands were in the Sonthal
    Parganas, State of Bihar and also in the Gaya
    district of State of Bihar. In Paragraph 9,
    following was laid down:-
    “9. Now, the mortgage deeds include, as
    already stated, lands situated, not only in
    17
    the Sonthal Parganas, but also in the Gaya
    District. What is the ordinary rule for
    determining the court which can take
    cognizance of a suit for immovable property
    situated within the local limits of two or
    more tribunals? The answer is furnished by
    Section 17 of the Code of Civil Procedure
    (Act V. of 1908), which provides that where
    a suit is to obtain relief respecting
    immovable property situate within the
    jurisdiction of different courts, the suit
    may be instituted in any court within the
    local limits of whose jurisdiction any
    portion of the property is situate.”
  19. Different High Courts have also while
    interpreting Section 17 of Civil Procedure Code laid
    down that Section 17 is applicable in case where
    properties are situated in the jurisdiction of more
    than one court. In Rajendra Kumar Bose Vs. Brojendra
    Kumar Bose, AIR 1923 Calcutta 501, the Division Bench
    of the Calcutta High Court noticed following:-
    “Exceptions to the rule that a suit cannot
    lie for partition of a portion of the
    family property have been recognised when
    different portions of the family property
    are situated in different jurisdictions,
    aid separate suits for separate portions
    have sometimes been allowed, where
    different rules of substantive or adjective
    law prevail in the differed Courts; Hari v.
    Ganpat Rao, (1883) 7 Bom. 272; Ramacharia
    v. Anantacharia, (1894) 18 Bom. 389; Moti
    Ram v. Kanhaya Lal, AIR 1920 Lah. 474;
    Panchanon v. Sib Chandra, (1887) 14 Cal.
    835; Balaram v. Ram Chandra, (1898) 22 Bom.
    922; Abdul v. Badruddin, (1905) 28 Mad.
    216; Padmani v. Jagadamba, (1871) 6 B.L.R.
    18
    134; Rammohan v. Mulchand, (1906)28 All.
    39; Lachmana v. Terimul, 4 Mad. Jur. 241;
    Subba v. Rama, (1866-67) 3 Mad. H.C.R. 376;
    Jayaram v. Atmaram, (1879) 4 Bom. 482;”
  20. A Full Bench of Allahabad High Court in Kubra Jan
    Vs. Ram Bali and Others, (1908) ILR 30 All. 560 had
    occasion to consider suit, which was filed at
    Bareilly with regard to Bareilly property as well as
    Bara Banki property situated in two different
    districts. The jurisdiction at Bareilly Court was
    upheld in Paragraph Nos. 1 and 8, in which it was
    laid down as follows:-
    “1. This appeal has been laid before a Full
    Bench by reason of a conflict in the
    authorities upon a question raised in the
    appeal. The suit is one by the daughter of
    one Bande Ali to recover from her brother
    Akbar Husain and a number of other
    defendants, transferees from him, her share
    in the property of her deceased father. This
    property is situate in the district of
    Bareilly and also in the district of Bara
    Banki in Oudh. It appears that Akbar Husain
    transferred the Bareilly property to the
    defendants Nos. 2 to 8 and the Bara Banki
    property to persons from whom the defendant
    respondent Ram Bali acquired it by virtue of
    a decree for pre-emption. The suit in regard
    to the Bareilly property was compromised,
    with the result that the claim in respect of
    that property was abandoned, and the suit
    proceeded as regards the Bara Banki property
    only.
  21. Again, it is said that after the
    compromise in respect of the Bareilly
    19
    property the Court ceased to have any
    jurisdiction to deal with the plaintiff’s
    claim, that is, that though the Bareilly
    Court bad jurisdiction, when the plaint was
    filed, to deal with the suit, it ceased to
    have jurisdiction when portion of the
    property claimed was withdrawn from the
    litigation. ‘It seems to me that once
    jurisdiction is vested in a Court, in the
    absence of a provision of law to the
    contrary, that jurisdiction will not be
    taken away by any act of the parties. There
    is no allegation here that the plaint was
    filed in the Bareilly Court with any
    intention to defeat the provisions of the
    Code of Civil Procedure as regards the venue
    of suits for recovery of immovable property.
    If any fraud of that kind had been alleged
    and proved, other considerations would
    arise. But in this case, as I have said, no
    such suggestion has been made.”
  22. Similar view was taken in Ramdhin and Others Vs.
    Thakuran Dulaiya and Others, AIR 1952 Nag. 303 (Full
    Bench); Basanta Priya Dei and Another Vs. Ramkrishna
    Das and Others, AIR 1960 Ori. 159; Laxmibai Vs.
    Madhankar Vinayak Kulkarni and Others, AIR 1968 Kant.
    82; Prem Kumar and Others Vs. Dharam Pal Sehgal and
    Others, AIR 1972 Delhi 90 and Janki Devi Vs. Mannilal
    and Others, AIR 1975 All. 91.
  23. The views of the different High Courts as well as
    of the Privy Council, as noticed above, clearly
    indicate that Section 17 has been held to be
    20
    applicable when there are more than one property
    situated in different districts.
  24. The point to be noticed is that the
    permissibility of instituting suit in one Court,
    where properties, which are subject matter of the
    suit are situated in jurisdiction of different courts
    have been permitted with one rider, i.e., cause of
    action for filing the suit regarding property
    situated in different jurisdiction is one and the
    same. In a suit when the cause of action for filing
    the suit is different, the Courts have not upheld the
    jurisdiction of one Court to entertain suits
    pertaining to property situated in different courts.
    In this context, we need to refer to some judgments
    of High Courts as well as of the Privy Council, which
    has considered the issue. In Sardar Nisar Ali Khan
    Vs. Mohammad Ali Khan, AIR 1932 PC 172, Privy Council
    had occasion to consider the case where subject
    matter of the suit were several properties situated
    in jurisdiction of different courts. Suit was
    instituted in Oudh (which later became part of Uttar
    Pradesh). The Privy Council held that since there
    was different cause of actions, the same cannot be
    21
    clubbed together. One of the properties, which was
    situated in Punjab was referred to in the suit as
    Khalikabad property. Although, suit with regard to
    the other three properties had similar cause of
    action but cause of action with regard to Khalikabad
    property being found to be different, the Court held
    that Section 17 Civil Procedure Code was not
    applicable. Following was laid down in the case by
    the Privy Council:-
    “There remains the question of the
    Khalikabad estate. Here the respondent
    cannot succeed unless he shows that under
    the terms of the deed creating the wakf he
    is the trustee. That question depends upon
    the construction of the deed. It is a
    separate and different cause of action from
    these which found the proceedings in
    respect of the other three properties.
    Their Lordships are unable to find any
    jurisdiction for bringing the suit in
    respect of this property elsewhere than in
    the Court of the district where the
    property is situate. Such justification
    cannot in their Lordships’ judgment be
    found in Section 17, Civil P.C. upon which
    the respondent relied.”
  25. A Two-Judge Bench judgment of Allahabad High
    Court has been heavily relied upon by the learned
    counsel for the respondent reported in AIR 1942 All.
    387, Karan Singh and Others Vs. Kunwar Sen and
    Others. In the above case, suit properties were
    22
    situated in Haridwar and Amritsar. Suit was filed
    in the Court of Civil Judge, Saharanpur. An
    application under Section 22, Civil P.C. was filed to
    determine as to whether a suit which is pending in
    the Court of the Civil Judge of Saharanpur should
    proceed in the corresponding Court having
    jurisdiction at Amritsar in the Punjab. The Court
    after noticing Section 17 held that plaintiffs were
    claiming two properties against two set of
    defendants, whom they alleged to be trespassers. The
    Court held that unless suit is filed on one cause of
    action, two properties situate in different
    jurisdiction cannot be clubbed. Following was laid
    down:-
    “Having made these observations I must now
    return to the question whether in the suit
    with which we are dealing it can be said
    that the relief claimed against the
    Defendants in possession of the property at
    Hardwar and the Defendants in possession of
    the property at Amritsar arises out of the
    same series of acts or transactions and
    whether the two properties claimed can, for
    the purposes of Section 17, be described as
    a single entity. It must be admitted that
    there is no apparent connection between the
    transfer of the Amritsar property to Amar
    Nath under the will executed by Jwala Devi
    and the subsequent transfers made by him
    and his successors-in-interest on the one
    hand and the transfer made by Prem Devi of
    the Hardwar property on the other hand. It
    23
    must be admitted also that the Plaintiffs
    are not claiming the estates of Badri Das
    as a whole against any rival claimant to
    the estate. They are claiming two
    properties against two sets of Defendants
    whom they allege to be trespassers and who,
    if they are trespassers, have absolutely no
    connection with each other. The only
    connecting link is that the Plaintiff’s
    claim in both the properties arose at the
    time of the death of Prem Devi and that the
    claim is based on the assumption that the
    Defendants are in possession as the results
    of transfers made by limited owners who
    were entitled, during their lives, to the
    enjoyment of the whole estate and the
    properties comprised within it. It was held
    many years ago in the case of Mst. Jehan
    Bebee v. Saivuk Ram (1867) H.C.R. 1. 109,
    that unconnected transfers by a Hindu widow
    of properties comprised within the
    husband’s estate did not give rise to one
    cause of action against the various
    transferees. The same rule was laid down in
    the case of Bindo Bibi v. Ram Chandra
    (1919) 17 A.L.J. 658. In that case a
    reference was made to the decision in Murti
    v. Bhola Ram (1893) 16 All 165 and it was
    pointed out that that was a case where a
    claim was made against one Defendant who
    had taken possession of different
    properties in execution of one decree.
    There is no doubt that that case is clearly
    distinguishable from the case with which we
    are dealing……………………”
  26. The above judgment was subsequently relied and
    explained by Allahabad High Court in Smt. Janki Devi
    Vs. Manni Lal and Others, AIR 1975 All. 91. In
    Paragraph No.11, following was laid down:-
    24
    “11. Similar view was expressed in Smt.
    Kubra Jan v. Ram Bali, (1908)ILR 30 All 560
    . This Full Bench decision does not appear
    to have been brought to the notice of the
    Division Bench hearing the case of Karam
    Singh v. Kunwar Sen AIR 1942 All 387.
    However, many observations made therein are
    not contrary to the law laid down in the
    above mentioned Full Bench case. The sum
    and substance of this Division Bench case
    also is that where in the facts and
    circumstances of the case all the
    properties can be treated as one entity a
    joint trial shall be permissible but not
    where they are more or less different
    properties with different causes of action.
    The material observations are as below:–
    “…….. and this implies, in my
    judgment, that the acts or
    transactions, where, they are
    different, should be so connected as
    to constitute a single series which
    could fairly be described as one
    entity or fact which would constitute
    a cause of action against all the
    defendants jointly. Whether this
    necessary condition exists in any
    particular case would, of course,
    depend upon the nature of the case
    but I am satisfied that this at least
    is necessary that the case should be
    such that it could be said that the
    Court in which the suit was
    instituted had local jurisdiction in
    the first instance to deal with the
    controversies arising between the
    plaintiffs and each of the
    defendants………………
    The property must, in the particular
    circumstances of the suit, be capable of
    being described as a single entity. Whether
    it can or cannot be so described will
    depend again upon the nature of the dispute
    between the parties. If there is a dispute,
    25
    for instance about a single estate which
    both parties are claiming as a whole that
    estate is obviously for the purposes of
    that particular suit a single entity. If,
    on the other hand, the owner of an estate
    has a claim against unconnected trespassers
    who have trespassed upon different parts of
    the estate or different properties situated
    within it, those parts or those properties
    would not for the purposes of the dispute
    between him and the trespassers be one
    entity but several entities and the
    provisions of Section 17, would not
    apply”.”
  27. Thus, for a suit filed in a Court pertaining to
    properties situated in jurisdiction of more than two
    courts, the suit is maintainable only when suit is
    filed on one cause of action.
  28. Justice Verma of Allahabad High Court in his
    concurring opinion in Karan Singh v. Kunwar Sen
    (supra) while considering Section 17 of C.P.C. has
    explained his views by giving illustration. Following
    was observed by Justice Verma:
    “I agree, Suppose a scattered Hindu dies
    possessed of immovable property scattered
    all over India at Karachi, Peshwar, Lahore,
    Allahabad, Patna, Dacca, Shillong,
    Calcutta, Madras and Bombay and is
    succeeded by his widow who, in the course
    of 40 or 50 years, transfers on different
    dates portions of the property situated at
    each of the places mentioned above, to
    different persons each of whom resides at
    the place where the property transferred to
    26
    him is situated, and the transfers are
    wholly unconnected with, and independent of
    one another. Upon the widow’s death the
    reversioner wants to challenge these
    various transfers. Learned counsel for the
    plaintiffs has argued that in such a case
    the reversioner is entitled to bring one
    suit challenging all the transfers at any
    one of the places mentioned above,
    impleading all the transferees, I find it
    very difficult to hold that such a result
    is contemplated by the provisions of the
    Code of Civil Procedure upon which reliance
    has been placed and which are mentioned in
    the judgment of my learned brother. I do
    not consider it necessary to pursue the
    matter any further. It is clear to my mind
    that, if the plaintiffs; argument mentioned
    above is accepted, startling results will
    follow.”
  29. Now, we come to submission of learned counsel for
    the appellant based on Section 39 sub-section (1)
    (c)of C.P.C. It is submitted that Section 39(1)(c) of
    C.P.C. is also a pointer to what is intended in
    Section 17. The scheme as delineated by Section 39
    indicates that when a decree is passed by a Court
    with regard to sale or delivery of immovable property
    situated outside the local limits of the jurisdiction
    of that Court it may transfer the decree for
    execution to another Court. The provision clearly
    indicates that a decree of Court may include
    immovable property situate in local limits of that
    27
    Court as well as property situated outside the local
    limits of the jurisdiction of the Court passing the
    decree. Section 39(1)(C) re-enforces our conclusion
    that as per Section 17 suit may be filed with regard
    to immovable property situated outside the local
    limit of the jurisdiction of the Court. We may,
    however, add that passing a decree by a Court with
    regard to immovable property situate outside the
    local jurisdiction of the Court passing the decree
    may not only confine to Section 17 but there may be
    other circumstances where such decree is passed.
    Section 20 of C.P.C. may be one of the circumstances
    where decree can be passed against the defendant
    whose property may situate in local jurisdiction of
    local limits of more than one Court.
  30. We may further notice that Section 17 uses the
    words ‘the suit may be instituted in any Court’. The
    use of word in Section 17 makes it permissive leaving
    discretion in some cases not to file one suit with
    regard to immovable property situated in local
    jurisdiction of more than one court. One of the
    exceptions to the rule is cases of partial partition
    28
    where parties agree to keep some property joint and
    get partition of some of the properties.
  31. The partial partition of property is well
    accepted principle with regard to a joint family. In
    Mayne’s Hindu Law & Usage, 16th Edition in paragraph
    485 following has been stated:
    “485. Partition partial or total.-
    Partition may be either total or partial. A
    partition may be partial either as regards
    the persons making it or the property
    divided.
    Partial as to properties.- It is open to
    the members of a joint family to severe in
    interest in respect to a part of the joint
    estate while retaining their status of a
    joint family and holding the rest as the
    properties of an undivided family. Until
    some positive action is taken to have
    partition of joint family property, it
    would remain joint family property.”
  32. Mulla on Hindu Law, 22nd Edition also refers to
    partial partition both in respect of the property and
    or in respect of the persons making it. In paragraph
    327 following has been stated:
    “”327. Partial partition.-(1) A partition
    between coparceners may be partial either
    in respect of the property or in respect of
    the persons making it.
    After a partition is affected, if some
    of the properties are treated as common
    29
    properties, it cannot be held that such
    properties continued to be joint
    properties, since there was a division of
    title, but such properties were not
    actually divided.
    (2) Partial as to property.- It is open
    to the members of a joint family to make a
    division and severance of interest in
    respect of a part of the joint estate,
    while retaining their status as a joint
    family and holding the rest as the
    properties of a joint and undivided
    family.”
    The issues arising in the present case being not
    related to subject of partial partition the issue
    need not to be dealt with any further.
  33. Learned counsel for the appellant has also
    submitted that permitting filing of a separate suit
    with regard to property situate in different
    jurisdiction shall give rise to conflicting decision
    and decision in one suit may also be res judicata in
    another suit. We in the present case being not
    directly concerned with a situation where there are
    more than one suit or a case having conflicting
    opinion we need not dwell the issue any further.
  34. Sections 16 and 17 of the C.P.C. are part of the
    one statutory scheme. Section 16 contains general
    principle that suits are to be instituted where
    30
    subject-matter is situate whereas Section 17 engrafts
    an exception to the general rule as occurring in
    Section 16. From the foregoing discussions, we arrive
    at following conclusions with regard to ambit and
    scope of Section 17 of C.P.C.
    (i) The word ‘property’ occurring in Section 17
    although has been used in ‘singular’ but by
    virtue of Section 13 of the General Clauses Act
    it may also be read as ‘plural’, i.e.,
    ”properties”.
    (ii) The expression any portion of the property can
    be read as portion of one or more properties
    situated in jurisdiction of different courts
    and can be also read as portion of several
    properties situated in jurisdiction of
    different courts.
    (iii) A suit in respect to immovable property or
    properties situate in jurisdiction of different
    courts may be instituted in any court within
    whose local limits of jurisdiction, any portion
    of the property or one or more properties may
    be situated.
    (iv) A suit in respect to more than one property
    situated in jurisdiction of different courts
    can be instituted in a court within local
    limits of jurisdiction where one or more
    properties are situated provided suit is based
    on same cause of action with respect to the
    31
    properties situated in jurisdiction of
    different courts.
  35. Now, we revert to the facts of the present case
    and pleadings on record. The suit filed by the
    appellant contained three different sets of
    defendants with different causes of action for each
    set of defendants. Defendant Nos. four to six are
    defendants in whose favour Will dated 15.02.2000 was
    executed by late Smt. Vimal Vaidya. In the plaint,
    relief as claimed in paragraph 25(H)is the will
    executed by late Smt. Vimal Vaidya was sought to be
    declared as null and void. The second cause of action
    in the suit pertains to sale deed executed by late
    Smt. Vimal Vaidya dated 15.10.2007 executed in favour
    of defendant Nos.7 and 8 with regard to Bombay
    property. The third set of cause of action relates to
    transfer documents relating to Indore property which
    was in favour of defendant Nos.9 and 10. The transfer
    documents dated 21.10.1986, 21.11.1988 and 20.08.1993
    are relating to Indore property. The plaint
    encompasses different causes of action with different
    set of defendants. The cause of action relating to
    Indore property and Bombay property were entirely
    different with different set of defendants. The suit
    32
    filed by the plaintiff for Indore property as well as
    Bombay property was based on different causes of
    action and could not have been clubbed together. The
    suit as framed with regard to Bombay property was
    clearly not maintainable in the Indore Courts. The
    trial court did not commit any error in striking out
    the pleadings and relief pertaining to Bombay
    property by its order dated 17.08.2011.
  36. Learned counsel for the appellant has also
    referred to and relied on order II Rule 2 and Order
    II Rule 3 C.P.C. Learned counsel submits that order
    II Rule 2 sub-clause (1) provides that every suit
    shall include the whole of the claim which the
    plaintiff is entitled to make in respect of the cause
    of action. The cause of action according to Order II
    Rule 2 sub-clause (1) is one cause of action. What is
    required by Order II Rule 2 sub-clause (1) is that
    every suit shall include the whole of the claim on
    the basis of a cause of action. Order II Rule 2
    cannot be read in a manner as to permit clubbing of
    different causes of action in a suit. Relying on
    Order II Rule 3 learned counsel for the appellant
    submits that joinder of causes of action is
    33
    permissible. A perusal of sub-clause (1) of Order II
    Rule 3 provides that plaintiff may unite in the same
    suit several causes of action against the same
    defendant, or the same defendants jointly. What is
    permissible is to unite in the same suit several
    causes of action against the same defendant, or the
    same defendants jointly. In the present case suit is
    not against the same defendant or the same defendants
    jointly. As noticed above there are different set of
    defendants who have different causes of actions.
  37. Learned counsel has lastly submitted that
    defendant Nos. 7 and 8 in their application having
    not questioned the cause of action for which suit was
    filed, the submission raised on behalf of the counsel
    for the respondent that suit was bad for misjoinder
    of the causes of action cannot be allowed to be
    raised.
  38. It is relevant to notice in the application filed
    by defendant Nos. 7 and 8, the heading of the
    application itself referred to “mis-joinder of
    parties and causes of action”. In Para (1) of the
    application, it was categorically mentioned that
    34
    there was mis-joinder of parties and causes of
    action. The trial court in its order dated 17.08.2011
    has also clearly held that plaintiff has clubbed
    different causes of action which is to be deleted
    from the present suit. The trial court further held
    that the plaintiff is not justified in including
    different properties and separate cause of actions
    combining in single suit.
  39. We, thus, are of the view that the trial court
    has rightly allowed the application filed by the
    defendant Nos.7 and 8. The High court did not commit
    any error in dismissing the writ petition filed by
    the appellant challenging the order of the trial
    court.
  40. We do not find any merit in this appeal, the
    appeal is dismissed accordingly.
    ………………….J.
    (ASHOK BHUSHAN )
    ………………….J.
    New Delhi, (K.M. JOSEPH )
    February 06, 2019.
    35