important questions of law pertaining to the interpretation and working of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 (hereinafter referred to as “Act, 2005”). whether the appellant had made any unambiguous admission about the respondent’s ownership rights in respect of the suit premises; if she has and her only defence to being dispossessed there from is her right of residence under the DV Act, then the Trial Court shall, before passing a decree of possession on the wife premise of ownership rights, ensure that in view of the subsisting rights of the appellant under the DV Act, she is provided with an alternate accommodation as per Section 19(1)(f) of the DV Act, which will continue to be provided to her till the subsistence of her matrimonial relationship. =

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The appellant filed a Suit No.792/2017 impleading the respondent as sole-defendant for mandatory and permanent injunction and also for recovery of damages/mesne profit. Plaintiff’s case in the suit was that he is a senior citizen of 76 years old, the defendant is in occupation of two bed rooms with attached dressing and bath rooms and a kitchen on the first floor of the property bearing No. D-1077, New Friends Colony, New Delhi. Plaintiff pleaded that he is a heart patient and has undergone angioplasty twice and suffers from hypertension and high blood pressure. Plaintiff pleads that the defendant has filed false and frivolous cases against the plaintiff and his wife and hence he prays for removal of the defendant from the 5 suit property so as he may live peaceful life. Plaintiff further pleaded that the plaintiff acquired the house from the previous owner, namely, Kulbhushan Jain on 12.01.1983. He also pleaded that the property has been converted into free hold vide conveyance deed executed in his favour dated 14.07.2003 which is registered. Plaintiff pleaded that his elder son was married with the defendant on 04.03.1995. The plaintiff further pleaded that wife of the plaintiff has been subjected to various threats and violence in the hands of the defendant on several occasions. The mention of the Divorce Petition filed by Raveen was made in the plaint and it was pleaded that the defendant as a counter blast has filed the complaint case under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 in which interim order directing the plaintiff not to alienate and not to dispossess the defendant without order of the competent court has been passed.

The defendant also referred to filing of complaint case under section 12 of Act, 2005. The defendant claimed that the suit property is a shared household as per provision of Section 2(s) of the Act, 2005, the defendant has right to stay/reside in the shared household. The plaintiff has filed suit in the 8 collusion of his son Raveen Ahuja to deprive the legal right of the residence of the defendant and her daughters in the suit property.

 Plaintiff filed an application under Order XII Rule 6 CPC on 05.01.2018 read with Section 151 CPC for passing a decree on the basis of admissions made by the defendant in the application under Section 12 of Act, 2005. Plaintiff pleaded that property in question is self-acquired property of the plaintiff by agreement to sell dated 12.01.1983 followed by a registered conveyance deed dated 14.07.2003. The defendant has herself in her pleadings filed in the domestic violence 9 case admitted the plaintiff to be the owner of the suit property, hence, decree of mandatory injunction in favour of the plaintiff be granted.

The Trial Court proceeded to decide the application under Order XII Rule 6 CPC filed by the plaintiff. By judgment dated 08.04.2019 Trial Court decreed the suit in the following manner: “26. In the light of aforesaid discussion and the observations, this Court is of the considered opinion that there are sufficient admission to pass a decree in favour of the plaintiff. Consequently, suit of the plaintiff is decreed for the relief of mandatory and permanent injunction as prayed for. The defendant is directed to hand over the vacant and physical possession of the suit property to the plaintiff within 15 days. At the time of announcement of the order, this Court asked plaintiff whether he wants to pursue his suit for the relief of damages to which he agreed to waive off the said relief. Accordingly, statement of the plaintiff was also recorded to this effect. Accordingly, the relief of damages stands withdrawn. Decree sheet be prepared for the relief of permanent and mandatory injunction accordingly. There is no order as to costs. File be consigned to record room. As requested, copy of this judgment be given dasti. 

The High Court opined that the Trial Court erroneously proceeded to pass decree under Order XII Rule 6 CPC by not impleading the husband and failing to appreciate the specific submission of the appellant while admitting the title of the respondent that the suit premises was the joint family property but also losing the site of the DV Act. The directions given by the High Court are contained in the paragraph 56 to the following effect: “56. In these circumstances, the impugned judgments cannot be sustained and are accordingly set aside. The matters are remanded back to the Trial Court for fresh adjudication in accordance with the directions given hereinbelow: (i)At the first instance, in all cases where the respondent’s son/the appellant’s husband has not been impleaded, the Trial Court shall direct his impleadment by invoking its suo motu powers under Order I Rule 10 CPC. (ii) The Trial Court will then consider whether the appellant had made any unambiguous admission about the respondent’s ownership rights in respect of the suit premises; if she has and her only defence to being dispossessed there  from is her right of residence under the DV Act, then the Trial Court shall, before passing a decree of possession on the wife premise of ownership rights, ensure that in view of the subsisting rights of the appellant under the DV Act, she is provided with an alternate accommodation as per Section 19(1)(f) of the DV Act, which will continue to be provided to her till the subsistence of her matrimonial relationship. (iii) In cases where the appellant specifically disputes the exclusive ownership rights of the respondents over the suit premises notwithstanding the title documents in their favour, the Trial Court, while granting her an opportunity to lead evidence in support of her claim, will be entitled to pass interim orders on applications moved by the respondents, directing the appellant to vacate the suit premises subject to the provision of a suitable alternate accommodation to her under Section 19(1)(f) of the DV Act, which direction would also be subject to the final outcome of the suit. (iv) While determining as to whether the appellant’s husband or the in-laws bears the responsibility of providing such alternate accommodation to the appellant, if any, the Trial Court may be guided by paragraph 46 of 15 the decision in Vinay Verma (supra). (v) The Trial Court shall ensure that adequate safeguards are put in place to ensure that the direction for alternate accommodation is not rendered meaningless and that a shelter is duly secured for the appellant, during the subsistence of her matrimonial relationship. (vi) This exercise of directing the appellant to vacate the suit premises by granting her alternate accommodation will be completed expeditiously and not later than 6 months from today.”We may notice a judgment of Madras High Court in K. Subramani Vs. Director of Animal Husbandry, Chennai, (2009) 1 MLJ 363 where Madras High Court has made following observations in

paragraph 7:-“7. A decision of the Criminal Court does not have the effect of binding nature on the

proceedings before the Civil Court including the Motor Accident Claims Tribunal for the

reason that the proof in both the Civil and Criminal cases are having two different categories of standards. In criminal cases, guilt of the accused must be proved beyond reasonable doubt, while in civil cases, the

rights of the parties or matter in issue shall be decided on preponderance of probabilities. If a party to the case relies upon a decision of the criminal Court and insists the Civil Court to give credence to the said decision, it is incumbent upon the party to gather further materials in the case, which would support the

observations and the decisions of the criminal Court. If any material is available in the case, which would corroborate or strengthen the decision of the criminal Court, then, there is no embargo for the Civil Court to place reliance upon it.”

We are in full agreement with the above view. There is no embargo in referring to or relying on an

admissible evidence, be of a civil court or criminal court both in civil or criminal proceedings.

From the above discussions, we arrive at following conclusions:-

(i) The pendency of proceedings under Act, 2005

or any order interim or final passed under

D.V. Act under Section 19 regarding right of

residence is not an embargo for initiating

or continuing any civil proceedings, which

relate to the subject matter of order interim or final passed in proceedings under

D.V. Act, 2005.

(ii) The judgment or order of criminal court

granting an interim or final relief under

Section 19 of D.V. Act, 2005 are relevant

within the meaning of Section 43 of the Evidence Act and can be referred to and looked

into by the civil court.

(iii) A civil court is to determine the issues in

civil proceedings on the basis of evidence,

which has been led by the parties before the

civil court.

(iv) In the facts of the present case, suit filed

in civil court for mandatory and permanent

injunction was fully maintainable and the

issues raised by the appellant as well as by

the defendant claiming a right under Section

19 were to be addressed and decided on the

basis of evidence, which is led by the parties in the suit.