Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Whether co-operative society can unilaterally cancel sale deed by executing extinguishment Deed?

For the reasons
stated supra, I have to grant the reliefs in
favour of the appellant as prayed by him and
quash the extinguishment deed dated
09.08.2001 along with the subsequent sale
deeds registered in favour of the respondent
No.5 who in turn has sold property in favour
of respondent Nos.6 and 7 without the
authority of law. The sale deed can be
cancelled under Section 31 of the Specific
Relief Act, 1963, by the competent civil
court if the same is challenged within the
period of limitation stipulated under Article
59 of the Limitation Act, 1963. Since the
facts are undisputed in the case on hand and
the respondent Society, after the lapse of 39
years has erroneously and illegally cancelled

the absolute sale deed registered in favour
of the appellant’s mother, the appellant has
acquired a valid and absolute title to the
property in question and the same could not
have been cancelled by the respondent Society
and the Sub-Registrar as it is void ab initio
in law. Hence, the High Court should have
responsibly exercised its extraordinary
jurisdiction and should have examined the
documents of the sale deed with respect to
the relevant provisions of the M.P
Co-operative Societies Act and Rules, 1962
and the Bye-laws of the Society. The
cancellation of the sale deed executed in
favour of the appellant’s mother in the year
1962 by way of the extinguishment deed could
not have been registered by the Sub-Registrar
as he is not empowered to do so. Hence, for
want of the competent jurisdiction, in
registering such document, the High Court
should have exercised its extraordinary
jurisdiction to annul the extinguishment deed

and the transactions of the subsequent sale
deeds, which has not been done by it.
Reportable
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6673 OF 2014
Satya Pal Anand ... Appellant
Versus
State of M.P. and Others ... Respondents
Dated:August 25, 2015.
Dipak Misra, J.

The appellant, a septuagenarian, filed an application
dated 4.2.2008 in the office of the Sub-Registrar, Bhopal,
the third respondent herein, for cancellation of registered
documents dated 9.8.2001, 21.4.2004 and 11.7.2006 which
pertain to registration of immoveable property situated on
Plot No. 7-B, Punjabi Bagh, Raisen Road, Bhopal. As put
forth by the appellant in his application, the said plot was
allotted to his mother, Smt. Veeravali Anand, by the Punjabi
Housing Cooperative Society Ltd. (for short, “the Society”),
the fourth respondent herein, by entering into a sale deed
dated 22.3.1962, registered on 30.03.1962. Smt. Veeravali
Anand expired on 12.6.1988. After her death, the fourth
respondent, through its office bearer executed a Deed of
Extinguishment on 9.8.2001 unilaterally cancelling the said
allotment and on the strength of such document, executed a
registered sale deed dated 21.4.2004 in favour of Mrs.
Manjit Kaur, the respondent no. 5 herein. Mrs. Manjit Kaur
in her turn executed another sale deed dated 11.7.2006 in
favour of the respondent nos. 6 and 7, Mrs. Meenakhsi and
Mr. S.C. Sharma.
2. As is evident, under these circumstances, the
appellant moved the Sub-Registrar (Registration) seeking
cancellation of the Deed of Extinguishment dated 9.8.2001.
The Sub-Registrar rejected the said prayer on two counts,
namely, the dispute between the parties was pending before
the competent authority under the M.P. Cooperative
Societies Act, 1960 (for short ‘the 1960 Act’) and secondly,
his jurisdiction was limited only to the extent of registering
the documents and if any party desired its cancellation,

then to verify that the cancellation deed is registered on
appropriate stamp paper. Thereafter, the appellant filed an
application under Section 69 of the Registration Act, 1908
(for brevity, “the Act”), which was rejected by the Inspector
General (Registration) stating that the powers conferred on
Inspector General (Registration) under Section 69 of the Act
is limited to general superintendence of the registration
office and making rules and not to provide hearing by any
Sub-Registrar. The Inspector General further intimated him
that against the order of Sub-Registrar, it was open to the
appellant to initiate appropriate proceedings before a Court
of competent jurisdiction.
3. Being aggrieved by the aforesaid orders, the appellant
preferred W.P. No. 13505 of 2008 before the High Court.
The prayer in the writ petition was for declaring the
Extinguishment Deed as well as the subsequent sale deeds
as void ab initio with a further direction to the respondents
to record the cancellation of such documents. It was
contended before the High Court that the Extinguishment
Deed was registered contrary to the provisions contained in
Section 17(1)(b) of the Act by the Sub-Registrar and,

therefore, it was obligatory on the part of the higher
authorities in exercise of powers under Section 69 of the Act
to declare the said action as ab initio void and consequently
the subsequent sale deeds to be void.
4. The said stand and stance of the appellant was
resisted by the contesting respondents contending, inter
alia, that as the initial allottee, Smt. Veeravali Anand, did
not take any steps for 35 years to raise any construction on
the plot in question, the respondent no. 4 registered the
Extinguishment Deed on 9.8.2001. On the strength of said
deed, the respondent society executed and registered the
sale deed dated 21.4.2004 in favour of Manjit Kaur. At that
juncture, the appellant and the respondents, to avoid any
controversy, entered into a deed of compromise dated
6.7.2004 whereunder the appellant received consideration
of Rs.6,50,000/- (rupees six lakhs fifty thousand only); Rs.
4,50,000/- by demand draft and Rs.2,00,000/- lakhs by
post dated cheques. Thereafter, the appellant filed an
application under Section 64 of the 1960 Act before the Dy.
Registrar, Cooperative Societies, forming the subject matter
of Dispute No. 81 of 2005. Along with said application, an

application under Section 57(1) of the 1960 Act was filed for
ad interim injunction which was granted by the said
authority on 1.2.2006 restraining the respondents to make
any construction over the said property. The said order of
injunction stood vacated by order dated 12.4.2006. The
said order vacating the order of injunction was affirmed by
the Joint Registrar and the Deputy Registrar was directed to
finally adjudicate the dispute.
5. As the factual matrix would unveil as the appellant
instituted many a legal proceeding against the respondents,
they issued a notice on 12.7.2007 asking him to refund the
consideration amount of Rs.6 lakhs. Against various
orders, the appellant preferred three special leave petitions,
i.e. SLP(C) No. 34857 of 2010, SLP(C) No. 13255 of 2012
and the present appeal arising out of SLP(C) No. 9502 of
2012. The SLP(C) No. 34857 of 2010 was preferred
assailing the maintainability of the revision petition and the
said SLP is pending. SLP(C) No. 13255 of 2012 relates to
appointment of receiver to protect his interest, which stood
dismissed by order dated 17.7.2013. I shall refer to the said
order in detail at the appropriate time.

6. The High Court took note of the factual assertions,
scanned the relevant provisions of the Act, took note of the
authorities cited by the appellant and eventually came to
hold that the controversy raised by the appellant could be
adjudicated before the appropriate forum and not in the writ
proceeding. The High Court further held that the
authorities under the Act had correctly stated that they
have no jurisdiction to decide the soundness of registration
of Extinguishment Deed or the sale deeds and declare them
as null and void.
7. I have heard Mr. Satya Pal Anand, appellant-in-person
and Mr. S.K. Dubey, learned senior counsel for respondent
nos. 1 to 3 and Mr. Satyajit A. Desai, learned counsel for
respondent nos. 5 to 7.
8. Though there are manifold assertions by the appellant
and counter asseverations covering various arenas, the core
issue that arises for consideration in the obtaining factual
matrix is whether the Deed of Extinguishment and the
subsequent sale deeds registered by the Sub-Registrar
under the Act could be cancelled by the Sub-Registrar or by
his superior authority in exercise of powers conferred under
6Page 7
the Act. There is no cavil over the fact that Extinguishment
Deed was registered on 9.8.2001 and subsequent sale deeds
were registered thereafter. The stand of the respondents is
that they had paid the amount to the appellant and there is
a finding to that effect in the Special Leave Petition that has
been dismissed by this Court.
9. Presently, I shall deal with the scheme of the Act.
Section 17 occurring in Part III of the Act deals with the
documents of which registration is compulsory. The
controversy pertains to Section 17(1)(b) of the Act, as urged
by the appellant. The said provision reads as follows:-
“17(1)(b) other non-testamentary instruments
which purport or operate to create, declare,
assign, limit or extinguish, whether in present or
in future, any right, title or interest, whether
vested or contingent, of the value of one hundred
rupees and upwards, to or in immovable
property;”
10. Section 18 of the Act deals with the documents of
which registration is optional. Section 20 of the Act deals
with the documents containing interlineations, blanks,
erasures or alterations. The said provision is reproduced
below:-
7Page 8
“20. Documents containing interlineations,
blanks, erasures or alterations. – (1) The
registering officer may in his discretion refuses to
accept for registration any document in which
any interlineation, blank, erasure or alteration
appears, unless the persons executing the
document attest with their signatures or initials
such interlineation, blank, erasure or alteration.
(2) If the registering officer registers any such
document, he shall, at the time of registering the
same, make a note in the register of such
interlineation, blank, erasure or alteration.
11. Section 21 of the Act provides for description of
property and maps or plans. The said provision is as
under:-
“21. Description of property and maps or
plans. (1) No non-testamentary document
relating to immovable property shall be accepted
for registration unless it contains a description of
such property sufficient to identify the same.
(2) Houses in towns shall be described as situate
on the north or other side of the street or road
(which should be specified) to which they front,
and by their existing and former occupancies,
and by their numbers if the houses in such street
or road are numbered.
(3) Other houses and land shall be described by
their name, if any, and as being the territorial
division in which they are situate, and by their
superficial contents, the roads and other
properties on which they abut, and their existing
occupancies, and also, whenever it is practicable,
by reference to a government map or survey.
(4) No non-testamentary document containing a
map or plan of any property comprised therein
8Page 9
shall be accepted for registration unless it is
accompanied by a true copy of the map or plan,
or, in case such property is situate in several
districts, by such number of true copies of the
map or plans as are equal to the number of such
districts.”
12. Section 22 deals with the description of houses and
land by reference to Government maps or surveys. The said
provision is as follows:-
“22. Description of houses and land by
reference to government maps of surveys. – (1)
Where it is, in the opinion of the State
Government, practicable to describe houses, not
being houses in towns, and lands by reference to
a government map or survey, the State
Government may, by rule made under this Act,
require that such houses and lands as aforesaid
shall, for the purposes of section 21, be so
described.
(2) Save as otherwise provided by any rule made
under sub-section (1), failure to comply with the
provisions of section 21, sub-section (2) or
sub-section (3), shall not disentitle a document to
be registered if the description of the property to
which it relates is sufficient to identify that
property.”
13. Section 32 of the Act, which occurs in Part VI provides
for persons to present documents for registration. The said
provision is reproduced below:-
“32. Persons to present documents for
registration – Except in the cases mentioned in
9Page 10
sections 31, 88 and 89, every document to be
registered under this Act, whether such
registration be compulsory or optional, shall be
presented at the proper registration office-
(a) by some person executing or claiming under
the same, or, in the case of a copy of a decree or
order, claiming under the decree or order, or
(b) by the representative or assignee of such a
person, or
(c) by the agent of such a person, representative
or assign, duly authorised by power-of-attorney
executed and authenticated in manner
hereinafter mentioned.”
14. Section 32A of the Act which has been inserted w.e.f.
24.9.2001, lays down compulsory affixing of photographs,
etc. Section 33 of the Act stipulates the power of attorney
recognizable for purposes of Section 32. Section 34 of the
Act provides for enquiry before registration by the
Registering Officer.
15. I have referred to the aforesaid provisions to
understand the scheme of registration and the role of the
Registration Officer. It is urged by the appellant that the
Extinguishment Deed was registered contrary to the
provisions contained in Section 17(1) (b) of the Act and in a
fraudulent manner. Section 17(1)(b) stipulates certain

categories of documents which are required to be registered.
It stipulates registration of non-testamentary documents
which purport or operate to create, declare, assign, limit or
extinguish, whether in present or in future, any right, title
or interest, whether vested or contingent, of the value of one
hundred rupees and upwards, to or in immovable property.
It is contended by the appellant that authority, on the
ground of fraud, can declare the deeds to be null and void.
To bolster the said stand, he has drawn inspiration from the
authority in Yanala Malleshwari v. Anantula Sayamma1
(Full Bench). Before the Full Bench, the question arose
whether a person can nullify the sale by executing and
registering a cancellation deed and whether the Registering
Officer like District Registrar and/or Sub-Registrar
appointed by the State Government, is bound to refuse
registration when a cancellation deed is presented. Rao, J.,
adverting to the provisions of the Act and the Rules and
dwelling upon the concept of fraud held thus:-
“The person, who has ex facie right whether such
right is registered or not can always approach the
registering authority, with a request to cancel a
sale deed, which was registered earlier by such
1
 AIR 2007 AP 57

registering authority by showing that subsequent
registration was obtained by fraud by a person
who is not entitled to transfer the property or
that such transfer was registered by playing
fraud on the owner or on the stranger. In the
present statutory dispensation, namely, Transfer
of Property Act, Contract Act, Specific Relief Act
and Registration Act, the Court does not see any
prohibition operating on the exercise of inherent
power by the registering authority to cancel the
sale deed earlier registered, which is likely to
cause prejudice to the true owner as well as to
the entire public at large.”
Chandraiah, J., while concurring with Rao, J. opined
that:-
“I would like to reiterate that there is no specific
prohibition under the Registration Act, 1908 (for
short 'the Act') to register a deed of cancellation.
The Registering Officer can refuse registration in
the situations arising under Sections 19 -
22, 32 and 35 and the relevant rules are Rules
26, 58 and 117. But in all other cases where the
conditions under the Act i.e.,
Sections 17 and 18 of the Act are fulfilled, the
Registering Officer is bound to register the
document and it is not in dispute that the
cancellation deed fulfills the conditions for the
purpose of registration. However, the Act does
not permit the Registering Officer to enquire into
the title of the party presenting the document for
registration and the situations mentioned in the
above said provisions under which the
registration can be refused are for different
purpose and only under those contingencies he
can refuse. This Court cannot enlarge the scope
of these provisions under the guise of
interpretation of statute. Further when there is
no prohibition under the Act the Registering

Officer has to register the documents presented
for registration in accordance with law and this
Court by judicial interpretation cannot impose
the same into the statute. It is well settled that
what has not been provided for in a statute
cannot be supplied by Courts and to do so will
amount to legislating which is not the function of
the Courts.”
16. In the said case, the minority view is to the following
effect:-
“The purpose of noting down these provisions of
TP Act and the Registration Act is to come to a
conclusion as to whether a vendor retains any
interest in the property which he sold and of
which a sale deed was executed and registered.
The answer is emphatic 'no'. Therefore, in my
view, when a person transfers all his rights, his
rights in the properly get extinguished and if he
tries to get back the property, it has to be done
by challenging the sale deed which he has
executed and which is registered by the
Sub-Registrar.”
17. It is apt to note here that in the said case, the majority
took the view that if a person is aggrieved by the
cancellation deed, his remedy is to seek an appropriate relief
in the civil court and the writ petition is not the proper
remedy.
18. The High Court in the impugned order has also
referred to a Division Bench decision of the Madras High

Court in E.R. Kalaivan v. Inspector General of
Registration, Chennai and Anr2
. In the said case, the
Division Bench took note of the decision in Yanala
Malleshwari (supra) and the Rule 26(k) of the Andhra
Pradesh Registration Rules that was introduced after the
verdict of the Full Bench. The Division Bench dealt with
decision of the High Court of Andhra Pradesh and the
constitutional validity of the newly amended Rule, which
provides for adherence to the principles of natural justice
when there is presentation of unilateral cancellation deed.
The Madras High Court observed that the situation is
prevalent in Andhra because of rule position and thereafter
proceeded to state thus:-
“In this context, we may also usefully refer to the
judgment of a learned single Judge of this Court
in G.D. Subramaniam v. The Sub-Registrar,
Konur3
. The learned Judge has extensively
considered the scope of registration of
cancellation of sale deed and had ultimately held
that such unilateral cancellation of deed cannot
be made in the absence of any specific provision
for the Registrar to do so. We are entirely in
agreement with the said view taken by the
learned single Judge.”
2
 AIR 2010 Madras 18
3
 2009 CIJ 243 Madras
1Page 15
Be it noted, after so stating, the Division Bench opined
thus:-
“That apart, on the facts of this case, our
attention is not drawn to any of the specific
provision under the Registration Act empowering
the Registrar to entertain a document of
cancellation for registration on the ground that
the sale consideration was not paid and
consequently, received by the vendor. Further, in
our opinion, when the Registrar satisfies himself
on the perusal of the document, wherein it is
stated that the full sale consideration is received
and on such satisfaction, entertain the document
for registration, cannot thereafter be conferred
with a power for cancellation of the deed on the
ground that the full sale consideration was not
paid and received by the vendor. Conferring such
power on the Registrar would tantamount to
conferring a power to decide the disputed
questions. That apart, as already stated, in the
absence of any provision specifically empowering
the Registrar to entertain a document of
cancellation for registration, without the
signature of both the vendor and the purchaser,
the deed cannot be entertained. For the said
reason, we find no infirmity in the impugned
circular issued by the Inspector General of
Registration.”
19. In this regard, I may usefully refer to the judgment
referred in M. Ramakrishna Reddy v. Sub Registrar,
Bangalore and Another4
, by a learned Single Judge of
Karnataka High Court. In the said case, the petitioner
therein claimed that he was the lawful owner of the property
4
 AIR 2000 Karnataka 46
1Page 16
and the concerned cooperative society had no right over the
said site nor could it be sold by the said society in favour of
the private respondents. It was contended that the
Sub-Registrar could not have registered the sale deed
relating to the said site in favour of the second respondent.
A notice was sent to the Sub-Registrar by the petitioner
calling upon to remove the name of the second respondent
as purchaser of the site, but the said request was not
complied with by the concerned Sub-Registrar. Being
dissatisfied with the said inaction, a writ petition was filed
seeking appropriate direction to consider the demand
contained in the notice. The learned Single Judge while
dealing with the concept of registration of instruments
under the Act, observed that:-
“The object and intent of providing for
registration of instruments under the Act is to
create and maintain a public record of
transactions relating to immovable properties, on
which every person dealing with an immovable
property can rely with confidence, for a full and
complete account of the transactions by which
his title to the immovable property, may be
affected. Section 17 of the Act enumerates the
documents of which the registration is
compulsory. All instruments (except Wills) which
purport or operate to create, declare, assign, limit
or extinguish, whether in present or in future,
any right, title or interest, whether vested or
1Page 17
contingent, in regard to an immovable property,
the value of which is Rs. 100/- or more, and all
Gift Deeds as also leases relating to immovable
properties for any term exceeding one year, are
compulsory registrable.”
Thereafter, the learned Judge referred to various
provisions of the Transfer of Property Act, 1885 and also of
the Act and concluded as follows:-
“.......when a person who claims to be the owner
or a person interested in an immovable property,
finds that someone else has executed and
registered a sale deed or other deed in regard to
his property, claiming to be the owner or a
person interested in the property, the appropriate
course for him is to file a suit for declaration and
consequential reliefs. If he is satisfied such sale
deed is executed by a person without any title
and that the deed is void ab initio, he may even
choose to ignore the same and leave it to the
person claiming title under such deed to
establish his title in appropriate proceedings. A
Court of Law has the jurisdiction to declare a
document to be void or even cancel a document.
But under no circumstances, a person claiming
to be the owner of a property or a holder of a
property, can require the Registering Authority to
cancel the registration of a document.”
20. In this context, we may refer to a two-Judge Bench
decision of this Court in Thota Ganga Laxmi and another
v. Government of Andhra Pradesh and others5
. In the
said case, the High Court of Andhra Pradesh had dismissed
5
 (2010) 15 SCC 207
1Page 18
the writ petition relying on the Full Bench decision in
Yanala Malleshwari (supra). The father of the appellants
therein had purchased the plot in question from the 4th
respondent by a registered sale deed dated 21.6.1983 and
since then they were in possession and enjoyment of the
said property. Subsequently, the fourth respondent
unilaterally registered the cancellation deed without any
notice to the appellants. A writ petition was filed seeking
declaration that the cancellation deed was illegal but the
said writ petition was dismissed holding that the appellants
should approach the civil court. This Court, in the said
factual matrix opined:-
“In our opinion, there was no need for the
appellants to approach the civil court as the said
cancellation deed dated 4-8-2005 as well as
registration of the same was wholly void and non
est and can be ignored altogether. For
illustration, if A transfers a piece of land to B by
a registered sale deed, then, if it is not disputed
that A had the title to the land, that title passes
to B on the registration of the sale deed
(retrospectively from the date of the execution of
the same) and B then becomes the owner of the
land. If A wants to subsequently get that sale
deed cancelled, he has to file a civil suit for
cancellation or else he can request B to sell the
land back to A but by no stretch of imagination,
can a cancellation deed be executed or registered.
This is unheard of in law.”
1Page 19
Thereafter, the Court referred to Rule 26(k)(i) of
Andhra Pradesh Registration Rules framed under Section 69
of the Act which reads as follows:-
 “(i) The registering officer shall ensure at the
time of preparation for registration of
cancellation deeds of previously registered deed
of conveyances on sale before him that such
cancellation deeds are executed by all the
executant and claimant parties to the previously
registered conveyance on sale and that such
cancellation deed is accompanied by a
declaration showing natural consent or orders of
a competent Civil or High Court or State or
Central Government annulling the transaction
contained in the previously registered deed of
conveyance on sale:
Provided that the registering officer shall dispense
with the execution of cancellation deeds by
executant and claimant parties to the previously
registered deeds of conveyances on sale before him
if the cancellation deed is executed by a Civil
Judge or a government officer competent to
execute government orders declaring the properties
contained in the previously registered conveyance
on sale to be government or assigned or
endowment lands or properties not registerable by
any provision of law.”
After reproducing the Rule, the Court proceeded to
state:-
“A reading of the above Rule also supports the
observations we have made above. It is only when
a sale deed is cancelled by a competent court
that the cancellation deed can be registered and
that too after notice to the parties concerned. In
1Page 20
this case, neither is there any declaration by a
competent court nor was there any notice to the
parties. Hence, this Rule also makes it clear that
both the cancellation deed as well as registration
thereof were wholly void and non est and
meaningless transactions.”
21. On a reading of the aforesaid judgment, two aspects
are noticed. It is evident from paragraph 4 of the judgment
that the Court has opined that the cancellation deed cannot
be executed or registered; and in paragraph 5 of the said
judgment, reference has been made to Rule 26(k)(i) which
has been framed by the State of Andhra Pradesh under
Section 69 of the Act and on that basis, it has been ruled
that the said Rule supports the observations made by the
Court. It is apt to note here that the case had arisen from
the State of Andhra Pradesh, where specific rule had come
into force after the pronouncement by the Full Bench in the
case of Yanala Malleshwari (supra). That apart the
observations made in paragraph 4 of the decision is of
general import.
22. At this juncture, I think it apt to refer to Section 69 of
the Act, which reads as follows:-
“69. Power of Inspector-General to superintend
registration offices and make rules – (1) The
2Page 21
Inspector-General shall exercise a general
superintendence over all the registration offices in
the territories under the 59 [State Government], and
shall have power from time to time to make rules
consistent with this Act—
(a) providing for the safe custody of books,
papers and documents;
(aa) providing the manner in which and the
safeguards subject to which the books may be kept
in computer floppies or diskettes or in any other
electronic form under sub-section (1) of section
16A;]
(b) declaring what language shall be deemed to
be commonly used in each district;
(c) declaring what territorial divisions shall be
recognized under section 21;
(d) regulating the amount of fines imposed under
sections 25 and 34, respectively;
(e) regulating the exercise of the discretion
reposed in the registering officer by section 63;
(f) regulating the form in which registering
officers are to make memoranda of documents;
(g) regulating the authentication by Registrars
and Sub-Registrars of the books kept in their
respective offices under section 51;
(gg) regulating the manner in which the
instruments referred to in sub-section (2) of
section 88 may be presented for registration;
(h) declaring the particulars to be contained in
Indexes Nos. I, II, III and IV, respectively;
2Page 22
(i) declaring the holidays that shall be observed
in the registration offices; and
(j) generally, regulating the proceedings of the
Registrars and Sub-Registrars.
(2) The rules so made shall be submitted to the
State Government for approval, and, after they
have been approved, they shall be published in
the Official Gazette, and on publication shall
have effect as if enacted in this Act.”
23. The Rule which I have reproduced has been framed
under the aforesaid provision and has been incorporated as
Rule 26(k)(i). The question that emerges for consideration is
whether in the absence of any specific rule in the State of
Madhya Pradesh, the general principle laid down in the case
of Thota Ganga Laxmi (supra) would be applicable.
24. On a careful reading of the provisions of the Act, I do
not find there is any prohibition to register a document of
cancellation or deed of extinguishment. Section 35 of the
Act which deals with procedure cannot be construed to
confer a quasi-judicial power on the registering authority.
The learned Single Judge of the High Court of Karnataka in
M. Ramakrishna Reddy (supra) has observed that:-
“... If a duly stamped document is presented for
registration with required registration fee (with
supporting enclosures required to satisfy the
2Page 23
provisions relating to valuation and payment of
stamp duty under the Karnataka Stamp Act,
1957 and the requirements of Section 230-A or
269-UL of Income Tax Act, 1961 and Section
22-A of the Registration Act and Section 26 of
Urban Land (Ceiling and Regulation) Act, 1976
and any other relevant statutory provisions), the
Sub-Registrar will proceed to register the
document. Before registration, the Registering
Officer will peruse the document to be registered
and supporting documents (like tax paid receipts,
revenue register extracts and even copies of
earlier title deeds). But such incidental
examination is not with the purpose of
ascertaining or verifying the title of the executant,
but only to ensure that there is no violation of
Section 22-A of the Act and that there is
compliance with the statutory requirements
under Stamp Laws, Taxation Laws, Land Ceiling
and Land Reforms Laws etc.”
It is apt to note there that the learned Single Judge
has referred to a decision of the Madras High Court in Park
View Enterprises v. State of Tamil Nadu6
, wherein it has
been observed that function of the Sub-Registrar, for
purposes of registration, are purely administrative and not
quasi-judicial and, therefore, he cannot decide whether a
document which is registered is executed by a person
having title as recited in the instrument.
25. Thus, in the absence of any power conferred on the
Registering Authority to adjudicate any aspect, it is difficult
6
 AIR 1990 Mad 251
2Page 24
to agree with the view in Thota Ganga Laxmi (supra) that
the Registering Authority cannot unilaterally register a deed
of cancellation. In my considered opinion, in the absence of
any rule like the one that is prevalent in the State of Andhra
Pradesh, which commands the Registering Officer to ensure
at the time of preparation for registration of cancellation
deeds of previously registered deed of conveyances on sale
before him that such cancellation deeds are executed by all
the executant and claimant parties to the previously
registered conveyance on sale and that such cancellation
deed is accompanied by declaration showing natural
consent, the Registering Authority or the superior authority
cannot refuse to register a deed of cancellation solely on the
ground that the claimant parties to the previously registered
conveyance are not present or they have not given consent.
26. Section 69 empowers the Inspector General to make
rules consistent with the Act. He has been allocated certain
areas to frame rules. Rule 26(k)(i) relating to Andhra
Pradesh under Section 69 of the Act may come under any
such regulatory measure. I do not intend to express any
opinion with regard to the validity of the Rule. The Rule
2Page 25
actually provides the manner of verification of execution. It
is a condition precedent for the purpose of execution and
registration. In the absence of any rule to opine that by no
stretch of imagination can a cancellation deed be accepted
or registered by the Registering Authority does not appear to
be correct. It seems to me that it has been broadly stated.
Hence, I am of the view that general observations in Thota
Ganga Laxmi (supra) requires to be considered by a larger
Bench.
27. Having said that, I would have directed the Registry to
place the papers before the Hon’ble the Chief Justice for
constitution of the larger Bench, but I am constrained to
refer to certain other facts which are imperative to be stated.
In the case at hand the factual score that is evincible is that
the Society had executed a sale deed in favour of the mother
of the appellant on 22.2.1962. As the construction was not
raised and there was violation, as claimed by the society, it
executed the Extinguishment Deed dated 9.8.2001 and
cancelled the sale deed dated 22.2.1962. On the strength of
the Extinguishment Deed, the Society executed and
registered a sale deed in favour of other private respondents
2Page 26
and further transactions took place. As the factual matrix
would reveal, the dispute raised by the appellant under
Section 64 of the 1960 Act is still pending before the
competent authority for adjudication. The said authority
has the jurisdiction to hold whether cancellation of the
allotment made in favour of the mother of the appellant was
justified in law. The said order is further subject to appeal
and other proceedings and, therefore, I refrain from
adverting to the same.
28. In this regard, I may refer with profit to the order dated
July 17, 2013 on which reliance has been placed by the
respondents, passed in Satya Pal Anand v. Punjabi
Housing Cooperative Society & Others7
. In the said case,
the Court has taken note of the dispute pending before the
Registrar under Section 64 of the 1960 Act, questioning the
legality of the execution of the Extinguishment Deed and
allotment of the property in dispute in favour of other
respondents. While dealing with the factum of appointment
of receiver, the Court has observed thus:-
7
 SLP(C) No. 13255 of 2012
2Page 27
“We must also mention herein that during the
pendency of these proceedings, the second
respondent sold the property in favour of
respondent nos. 4 and 5 by sale deed dated
11.7.2006. It appears that the Sub-Registrar on
inspection of the disputed plot found that there
were two constructed duplex and two more near
completion as on the date of inspection i.e. on
13.03.2007 of which one was occupied by
respondent no.4.
It must be remembered that the instant
proceedings arise out of the interlocutory
proceedings seeking appointment of the receiver
at the instance of the petitioner herein. Having
regard to the fact that respondent no. 4 was in
possession of the property in dispute at least
since 13.03.2007 admittedly and also having
regard to the fact that the petitioner received an
amount of Rs.6,50,000/- we do not see any
justification for the appointment of the receiver.”
29. I have noted this aspect as the counsel for the
respondent has highlighted the said aspect for two
purposes, namely, a dispute before the appropriate forum is
pending for adjudication and that the appellant had entered
into a compromise with the respondents. It is also urged
that the compromise was entered into to buy peace. Thus,
the appellant has raised a dispute, accepted the money from
the subsequent purchasers and moved the authority under
the Act to cancel the deed of extinguishment. In such a
2Page 28
situation, in my view, the writ court has rightly declined to
exercise the jurisdiction.
30. In view of the foregoing analysis, while not finding any
error on the factual score of the dismissal of the writ
petition by the High Court, as stated earlier, I am of the
view that the principle by way of general observations stated
in Thota Ganga Laxmi (supra) requires consideration by a
larger Bench and, therefore, the papers be placed before the
Hon’ble the Chief Justice for constitution of a larger Bench.
.............................J.
[Dipak Misra]
New Delhi
August 25, 2015
2Page 29
REPORTABLE
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
 CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
 CIVIL APPEAL NO. 6673 OF 2014
 (Arising Out of SLP (C) No.9502 of 2012)
SATYA PAL ANAND ………APPELLANT
Vs.
STATE OF M.P. AND ORS. ………RESPONDENTS
J U D G M E N T
V. GOPALA GOWDA, J.
 I have gone through the judgment of my
learned brother Judge, Justice Dipak Misra,
wherein certain relevant facts have been
adverted to by my learned brother on the
contentious legal issues urged on behalf of the
parties. My learned brother has also adverted
to the relevant provisions under Sections 20,
2Page 30
21, 22 and 32 of the Indian Registration Act,
1908.
2. My learned brother Judge has also
referred to the full bench decision of the
Andhra Pradesh High Court in the case of
Yanala Malleshwari v. Anantula Sayamma8, the
judgment of the Madras High Court in the case
of E.R. Kalaivan v. Inspector General of
Registration, Chennai & Anr.9 and the
judgment of the Karnataka High Court in the
case of M. Ramakrishna Reddy v. Sub
Registrar, Bangalore & Anr.10 My learned
brother judge has also referred the decision
of this Court in the case of Thota Ganga
Laxmi & Anr. v. Government of Andhra Pradesh
& Ors.11, wherein the High Court of Andhra
Pradesh dismissed the Writ Petition of the
appellant therein, relying on the Full Bench
decision of Yanala Malleshwari (supra).
8 AIR 2007 AP 57
9 AIR 2010 Madras 18
10 AIR 2000 Karnataka 46
11 (2010) 15 SCC 207
3Page 31
3. I have also taken into consideration the
fact that the sale deed of the property in
dispute was executed by the Society in favour
of the mother of the appellant on 22.03.1962
in respect of the plot involved in this
proceeding. The contention urged on behalf of
the Society is that as there was no
construction raised by the appellant or his
deceased mother on the said plot of land and
therefore, there has been a violation of the
Bye-laws of the Society, as claimed by the
Society and hence, it has executed the
Extinguishment Deed dated 09.08.2001 with
respect to the said plot of land and
cancelled the already registered absolute
sale deed in favour of the appellant’s mother
dated 22.03.1962.
4. On the basis of the registration of the
Extinguishment Deed with respect to the said
plot of land, the subsequent allotment of the
said plot of land took place and the sale
deed was registered by the society in favour
3Page 32
of Mrs. Manjeet Kaur-respondent No.5, who
further alienated the said plot and
registered another sale deed in favour of the
respondent Nos.6 and 7.
5. My learned brother Judge has also
referred to the order dated 17.07.2013 passed
by this Court in SLP (C) No. 13255 of 2012
(Satya Pal Anand v. Punjabi Housing
Cooperative Society & Ors.), arising out of
the order dated 03.08.2011, passed in Writ
Petition No. 14548 of 2008 by the High Court
of M.P. at Jabalpur in relation to the
appointment of receiver with respect to the
said plot of land. This Court held that since
the respondent No.5-Mrs. Manjeet Kaur was
already in possession of the property in
dispute and the appellant had received an
amount of Rs.6,50,000/- by way of a
compromise deed, there was no justification
for the appointment of the receiver in the
light of the fact that there was a pending
dispute between the parties under Section 69
3Page 33
of the M.P. Co-operative Societies Act, 1960,
before the Registrar of Societies. Hence, the
Special Leave Petition filed by the appellant
was dismissed by this Court. My learned
brother, in the present case has also based
his findings on similar reasons.
6. I respectfully dissent with the said view
taken by my learned brother Judge by giving
the following reasons.
7. It is an undisputed fact that the
respondent No.4-Punjabi Housing Co-operative
Society Ltd. Bhopal (for short “the Society”)
had allotted the said plot of land in favour
of the appellant’s mother namely, Smt.
Veeravali Anand and it had executed the
absolute sale deed dated 22.03.1962 with
regard to the said plot of land in her favour
and the same was registered on 30.03.1962
before the jurisdictional Sub-Registrar. The
mother of the appellant died on 12.06.1988,
leaving behind the appellant and his sister
3Page 34
as her legal heirs to succeed her intestate
property comprising of the said plot of land.
8. Subsequent to the death of the
appellant’s mother, the Society, represented
by its office bearer has executed an
extinguished deed dated 09.08.2001,
unilaterally cancelling their already
registered sale- deed with regard to the said
plot of land. Thereafter, on the strength of
the extinguished deed, the Society executed a
registered sale deed dated 21.04.2004 in
favour of respondent No.5- Mrs. Manjit Kaur
who in turn has executed another sale deed
dated 11.07.2006 in favour of respondent
Nos.6 and 7 (Mrs. Minakshi and Mr. S.C.
Sharma). The said documents have been
fraudulently registered by them which is
against the acquired legal rights of the
appellant on the said plot of land, the same
is void ab initio in law as it is
impermissible under the provisions of the
3Page 35
Indian Registration Act, 1908 read with
Section 31 of the Specific Relief Act, 1963.
9. There is also a reference with regard to
the taking of the consideration amount of
Rs.6,50,000/- by the appellant from the
respondent no.5 vide the execution of the
Deed of Compromise dated 06.07.2004. The
appellant has also raised a dispute in that
regard under Section 64 of the M.P.
Co-operative Societies Act, 1960 before the
Sub-Registrar, Co-operative Society, Bhopal
which is pending in respect of the said plot
of land. Besides this, some of the
litigations between the parties are pending
before different forum i.e. Joint Registrar,
Co-operative Society, State Co-operative
Tribunal and in the High Court.
10. The appellant filed an application
before the Sub-Registrar (Registration),
seeking the cancellation of the
extinguishment deed dated 09.08.2001 executed
3Page 36
by the Society against the appellant’s plot
of land. By order dated 28.06.2008, the
Sub-Registrar (Registration) dismissed the
application of the appellant, holding that
since the question of sustainability of the
extinguished deed dated 09.08.2001 and
interpretation of Clause 43(1) of the
Bye-Laws of Society are still pending before
Sub-Registrar, Co-operative Society and
various other competent forum, the
jurisdiction of the Sub-Registrar is limited
only to the extent to register the document.
The Sub-Registrar further held that if any of
the parties want its cancellation, then the
relevant party may file for the registration
of the cancellation deed with regard to the
said plot of land. The appellant filed an
application under Section 69 of the M.P.
Co-operative Societies Act, 1960, before the
Inspector General, Registration and the same
was dismissed on the ground that it is not
maintainable and further directed the
3Page 37
appellant to approach the competent court in
this regard. Therefore, the aforesaid Writ
Petition was filed before the High Court by
the appellant wherein he has questioned the
correctness of the order dated 15.09.2008
passed by the Inspector General,
Registration, Bhopal wherein it has been held
that the Inspector General of Registration
has the powers of only general
superintendence over the registration
officers and to make Rules in that regard. He
is however, not empowered to hear any
proceedings against the order of
Sub-Registrar.
11. The High Court after adverting to the
aforesaid facts and noting the decision of
the Full Bench of the Andhra Pradesh High
Court in the judgment of Yanala Malleshwari
(supra) and the judgment of the Madras High
Court in the case of E.R. Kalaivan v.
3Page 38
Inspector General of Registration12 and
further, referring to Section 17(1)(b) read
with Rule 69 of the Registration Act, 1908
and Rules, and other judgments of this Court
in the cases of Government of U.P. v. Raja
Mohammad Amir Ahmad Khan13 and Government of
Uttar Pradesh v. Khan, has held that as soon
as the registering officer has registered the
documents presented to him for registration,
his function of performance for such document
produced before him is over and therefore, he
becomes a functus officio and does not have
the power even to impound the document under
Section 33 of the Registration Act, 1908.
Further, the High Court has referred to the
judgment of the Karnataka High Court in the
case of M. Ramakrishna Reddy (supra) and
dismissed the Writ Petition filed by the
appellant in favour of the respondent
Society. The correctness of the same is
12 AIR 2010 Madras 18
13 AIR 1961 SC 787
3Page 39
questioned in this Civil Appeal urging
various legal grounds.

12. Having regard to the facts, the rival
legal contentions and the grounds urged in
the writ petition and in these proceedings on
behalf of the parties, the following question
of law would arise for my consideration:
“Whether the appellant is
entitled to seek for the relief
of cancellation of the
registered documents dated
09.08.2001, 21.04.2004 and
11.07.2006, registered with
respect to the immovable
property, i.e. plot No.7-B,
Punjabi Bagh, Raisen Road,
Bhopal?”
13. The said point is required to be
answered in favour of the appellant for the
following reasons:
 It is an undisputed fact that the Society
had executed an absolute sale deed dated
22.03.1962 in favour of the deceased mother
3Page 40
of the appellant, Smt. Veeravali which was
registered on 30.03.1962. It is also not in
dispute that she died on 12.06.1988, leaving
behind the appellant and his sister to
succeed her intestate property. The
respondent-Society has also not disputed the
fact that the appellant is the legal heir of
the deceased Smt. Veeravali Anand, in whose
favour the sale deed was executed for the
said plot of land.
14. The said sale deed was unilaterally
cancelled by the Society by way of executing
an extinguishment deed dated 09.08.2001, with
regard to the said plot of land and
thereafter, on the strength of such
extinguished deed, the Society again executed
a registered sale deed on 21.04.2004 in
favour of respondent No.5 who in turn
executed another sale deed dated 11.07.2006
in favour of respondent Nos. 6 and 7.
4Page 41
15. The contention urged by the appellant is
that the action of the Society and the
Sub-Registrar, who has cancelled the
initially registered sale deed in favour of
Smt. Veeravali Anand by registering the
extinguished deed unilaterally, is contrary
to the statutory provisions of the Indian
Registration Act, 1908. In this regard, the
judgment of this Court in the case of Thota
Ganga Laxmi & Anr. (supra) has been relied
upon, wherein this Court has held thus:
“4. In our opinion, there was no need
for the appellants to approach the
civil court as the said cancellation
deed dated 04-08-2005 as well as
registration of the same was wholly
void and non est and can be ignored
altogether. For illustration, if A
transfers a piece of land to B by a
registered sale deed, then, if it is
not disputed that A had the title to
the land, that title passes to B on
the registration of the sale deed
(retrospectively from the date of the
execution of the same) and B then
becomes the owner of the land. If A
wants to subsequently get that sale
deed cancelled, he has to file a civil
suit for cancellation or else he can
request B to sell the land back to A
4Page 42
but by no stretch of imagination, can
a cancellation deed be executed or
registered. This is unheard of in law.
5. In this connection, we may also
refer to Rule 26(k)(i) relating to
Andhra Pradesh under Section 69 of the
Registration Act, 1908, which states:
“(i) The registering officer
shall ensure at the time of
preparation for registration of
cancellation deeds of previously
registered deed of conveyances
on sale before him that such
cancellation deeds are executed
by all the executant and
claimant parties to the
previously registered conveyance
on sale and that such
cancellation deed is accompanied
by a declaration showing natural
consent or orders of a competent
Civil or High Court or State or
Central Government annulling the
transaction contained in the
previously registered deed of
conveyance on sale:
Provided that the registering
officer shall dispense with the
execution of cancellation deeds
by executant and claimant
parties to the previously
registered deeds of conveyances
on sale before him if the
cancellation deed is executed by
a Civil Judge or a government
officer competent to execute
government orders declaring the
properties contained in the
previously registered conveyance
on sale to be government or
assigned or endowment lands or
4Page 43
properties not registerable by
any provision of law.”
A reading of the above Rule also
supports the observations we
have made above. It is only when
a sale deed is cancelled by a
competent court that the
cancellation deed can be
registered and that too after
notice to the parties concerned.
In this case, neither is there
any declaration by a competent
court nor was there any notice
to the parties. Hence, this Rule
also makes it clear that both
the cancellation deed as well as
registration thereof were wholly
void and non est and meaningless
transactions.”
16. Further reliance has been placed upon
the decision of the Madras High Court in the
case of E.R. Kalaivan v. The Inspector
General of Registration Chennai & Anr.
(supra) wherein the powers of the Registrar
with regard to the cancellation of the
document have been elaborately discussed. The
relevant paras of the case read thus:
“12. In this context, we may also
refer to Section 32A of the Indian
Registration Act providing that all
such deeds shall be signed by the
4Page 44
vendor as well as the purchaser and
the same shall also bear the finger
prints and photographs. Section 34 of
the Act also needs a reference,
whereby the Registering Authority is
mandated to hold an enquiry in respect
of the validity of the document
presented for registration. Having
regard to the above provisions, in our
opinion, a registered sale deed, if
sought to be cancelled, registration
of such deed must be at the instance
of both the parties viz., bilaterally
and not unilaterally. Section 34A of
the Act, whereby the Registering
Authority is to enquire whether or not
such document was executed by the
persons by whom it purports to have
been executed. A sale is essentially
an executed contract between two
parties on mutual agreed conditions.
Question is as to whether such
contract can be unilaterally
rescinded, particularly, in a case of
sale deed. In this context, we may
refer to Section 62 of the Indian
Contract Act, 1872 which provides that
contract which need not be performed.
By that provision, any novation,
rescission and alteration of a
contract can be made only bilaterally.
A deed of cancellation will amount to
rescission of contract and if the
issue in question is viewed from the
application of Section 62 of the
Indian Contract Act, any rescission
must be only bilaterally. See City
4Page 45
Bank N.A. v. Standard Chartered Bank
and Ors.(2004 (1) SCC 12).
 XXX XXX XXX
19. That apart, on the facts of this
case, our attention is not drawn to
any of the specific provision under
the Registration Act empowering the
Registrar to entertain a document of
cancellation for registration on the
ground that the sale consideration was
not paid and consequently, received by
the vendor. Further, in our opinion,
when the Registrar satisfies himself
on the perusal of the document,
wherein it is stated that the full
sale consideration is received and on
such satisfaction, entertain the
document for registration, cannot
thereafter be conferred with a power
for cancellation of the deed on the
ground that the full sale
consideration was not paid and
received by the vendor. Conferring
such power on the Registrar would
tantamount to conferring a power to
decide the disputed questions. That
apart, as already stated, in the
absence of any provision specifically
empowering the Registrar to entertain
a document of cancellation for
registration, without the signature of
both the vendor and the purchaser, the
deed cannot be entertained. For the
said reason, we find no infirmity in
4Page 46
the impugned circular issued by the
Inspector General of Registration.”
17. Thus, the decision of this Court and the
Madras High Court in the cases referred to
supra, aptly apply to the fact situation of
the present case. In the present case also
such an extinguishment deed, which is
unilaterally registered would be rescinded,
particularly, in the case of sale deed or
extinguishment deed. In this context, Section
62 of the Indian Contract Act, 1872 would
come into play which provides that if the
parties to a contract agree to substitute a
new contract for it, or to rescind or alter
it, the original contract need not be
performed. Thus, for any novation, rescission
and alteration of the contract, it can be
made only bilaterally and with the amicable
consent of both the parties. Thus, a deed of
cancellation of the earlier registered sale
deed executed in favour of the Smt. Veeravali
4Page 47
Anand would amount to an illegal rescission
of the absolute sale deed because if the
issue in question is viewed from the
application of Section 62 of the Indian
Contract Act, 1872, then it is clear that any
rescission must be done only bilaterally.
18. In the case on hand, undisputedly, the
extinguishment deed dated 09.08.2001 and the
cancellation of the sale deed dated
22.03.1962 in respect of the said plot of
land involved in this case is unilaterally
done by applying the clause 43(1) of the
Bye-laws of the Society which has been
amended in the year 1991 bearing No.Panji/
Gram Nirman 90/24 dated 02.01.1992,
communicated to the Society by the Deputy
Registrar, Co-operative Society, Bhopal. The
said clause cannot have a retrospective
effect with regard to the cancellation of the
sale deed in the name of the mother of the
appellant and for executing extinguished deed
4Page 48
with regard to the said plot of land as the
cancellation deed which was registered on
09.08.2001 is only a subterfuge. The said
clause of the Society by-laws, cannot
override the statutory provisions under
Section 31 of the Specific Relief Act, 1963.
Section 31 of the Specific Relief Act reads
thus:
“31. When cancellation may be
ordered: (1) Any person against whom
a written instrument is void or
voidable, and who has reasonable
apprehension that such instrument,
if left outstanding may cause him
serious injury, may sue to have it
adjudged void or voidable; and the
court may, in its discretion, so
adjudge it and order it to be
delivered up and cancelled.
(2) If the instrument has been
registered under the Indian
Registration Act, 1908 (16 of 1908),
the court shall also send a copy of
its decree to the officer in whose
office the instrument has been so
registered; and such officer shall
note on the copy of the instrument
4Page 49
contained in his books the fact of
its cancellation.”
19. Therefore, the unilateral cancellation
of the sale deed with regard to the said plot
of land against the appellant is contrary to
the provisions as provided under Section 31
of the Specific Relief Act, 1963 read with
Article 59 of the Limitation Act, 1963,
wherein the cancellation of any instrument
can be done only within three years, ‘when
the facts entitling the plaintiff to have the
instrument or decree cancelled or set aside
or the contract rescinded first become known
to him’. Therefore, the respondent-Society
had no right to unilaterally cancel the
absolute sale deed executed in favour of the
appellant’s mother in the year 1962 with
regard to the said plot of land in the year
2001 after lapse of more than 39 years which
is totally impermissible in law, both for the
Society and the Sub-Registrar. The respondent
4Page 50
has neither any authority under the
provisions of the Registration Act, 1908 nor
under Section 31 of the Specific Relief Act,
1963 read with Article 59 of the Limitation
Act, 1963 to unilaterally cancel the sale
deed without the authority of law and as such
the registration of the document by the
sub-Registrar amounts to playing fraud on the
power provided to him under law which is
ultra vires the relevant statutory provisions
and the Constitution of India. Further
reliance has been placed upon the judgment of
the Constitution Bench of this Court in the
case of Pratap Singh v. State of Punjab14,
wherein the Constitution Bench, with
reference to the House of Lords, has clearly
laid down the aforesaid principle as under :
“6. If this were put aside, the second
ground of attack on the orders may be
viewed from two related aspects—of
ultra vires pure and simple and
secondly as an infraction of the rule
that every power vested in a public
body or authority has to be used
honestly, bona fide and reasonably,
14 AIR 1964 SC 72
5Page 51
though the two often slide into each
other. Thus Sir Lyman Duff, speaking
(in Municipal Council of Sydney v.
Campbell) in the context of an
allegation that the statutory power
vested in a municipal corporation to
acquire property had been used in bad
faith which was held to have been
proved, stated:
“A body such as the Municipal
Council of Sydney, authorised to
take land compulsorily for
specified purposes, will not be
permitted to exercise its powers
for different purposes, and if it
attempts to do so, the Courts will
interfere. As Lord Loreburn said,
in Marquess of Clanricarde v.
Congested Districts Board
‘Whether it does so or not is
a question of fact.' Where
the proceedings of the
Council, are attacked upon
this ground, the party
impeaching those proceedings
must, of course, prove that
the Council, though
professing to exercise its
powers for the statutory
purpose, is in fact employing
them in furtherance of some
ulterior object.”
Similarly, in Short v. Poole
Corporation Pollock M.R. observed:
“The appellants (represented before
the Court by Maugham K.C.—
afterwards Lord Maugham) do not
contest the proposition that where
an authority is constituted under
statute to carry out-statutory
5Page 52
powers with which is entrusted
it, ... if an attempt is made to
exercise those powers corruptly—as
under the influence of bribery, or
mala fides — for some improper
purpose, such an attempt must fail.
It is null and void: see Reg. v.
Governors of Darlington School”.
In the same case Warrington, L.J. said:
“No public body can be
regarded as having statutory
authority to act in. bad faith
or from corrupt motives, and
any action purporting to be
that of the body, but proved
to be committed in bad faith
or from corrupt motives, would
certainly be held to be
inoperative.
It may be also possible to
prove that an act of the
public body, though performed
in good faith and without the
taint of corruption, was so
clearly founded on alien and
irrelevant grounds as to be
outside the authority
conferred upon the body, and
therefore inoperative. It is
difficult to suggest any act
which would be held ultra
vires under this head though
performed bona fide.””
20. For the aforesaid reasons, I have come
to the conclusion that the Society has no
right to re-allot the said plot of land in
favour of the respondent No. 5 by cancelling
5Page 53
the already registered sale deed in favour of
the appellant’s mother in the year 1962 which
was an absolute sale deed. Further,
registering the sale deed on 21.04.2004 in
favour of respondent no.5, who in turn sold
the said plot of land in favour of respondent
Nos. 6 and 7, is void ab initio in the light
of the fact that according to the bye-Laws of
the Society, Mrs. Manjeet-respondent no.5,
could not have come in possession of the said
plot in the first place as her husband has
already got a plot allotted to him in the
very same Society. Therefore, the transfer of
the said plot of land via subsequent sale
deeds are void ab initio in law and
therefore, liable to be set aside.
21. For the above stated reasons, it is clear
that the appellant has got a valid
constitutional right over the said plot of
land as guaranteed under Article 300A of the
Constitution of India, wherein it has been
5Page 54
stated that the deprivation of property
without the authority of law is totally
impermissible in law. Merely because the
cancellation of the void extinguishment deed
with regard to the said plot of land and the
subsequent sale deed executed in favour of
the respondent No.5 has not been sought for
by the appellant by approaching the civil
court, it does not disentitle him for seeking
the relief with regard to the said plot of
land for the reason that the cancellation of
the sale deed dated 30.03.1962 after a lapse
of 39 years has been done without the
authority of law by the Society. The
subsequent actions of re-registering the sale
deed in favour of the respondent No.5 and
thereafter in favour of respondents Nos.6 and
7 are void ab initio in law. Thus, this Court
has the power to closely examine the same in
these proceedings having regard to the
peculiar facts and circumstances of the
present case.
5Page 55
22. The scope of the powers of this Court under
Article 136 of the Constitution of India has
been discussed in a catena of cases. In the
case of Arunachalam v. P.S.R. Sadhanantham and
Anr.15 , Chinappa Reddy, J. observed as under:
“4.... Article 136 of the Constitution of
India invests the Supreme Court with a
plenitude of plenary, appellate power over
all Courts and Tribunals in India. The
power is plenary in the sense that there
are no words in Article 136 itself
qualifying that power. But, the very nature
of the power has led the Court to set
limits to itself within which to exercise
such power. It is now the well established
practice of this Court to permit the
invocation of the power Under
Article 136 only in very exceptional
circumstances, as when a question of law of
general public importance arises or a
decision shocks the conscience of the
Court. But within the restrictions imposed
by itself, this Court has the undoubted
power to interfere even with findings of
fact making no distinction between judgment
of acquittal and conviction, if the High
Court, in arriving at those findings, has
acted "perversely or otherwise
improperly"....”
More recently, in the case of Ganga Kumar
Shrivastav v. State of Bihar16, this Court
15 (1979) 2 SCC 297
16 (2005) 6 SCC 211
5Page 56
laid down the following principles as regards
the power of this Court under Article 136:
“10.
.....
i) The powers of this Court Under
Article 136 of the Constitution are very
wide but in criminal appeals this Court
does not interfere with the concurrent
findings of the fact save in exceptional
circumstances.
ii) It is open to this Court to interfere
with the findings of fact given by the
High Court if the High Court has
acted perversely or otherwise improperly.
iii) It is open to this Court to invoke the
power Under Article 136 only in very
exceptional circumstances as and when a
question of law of general public
importance arises or a decision shocks
the conscience of the Court.
iv) When the evidence adduced by the
prosecution fell short of the test of
reliability and acceptability and as such
it is highly unsafe to act upon it.
v) Where the appreciation of evidence and
finding is vitiated by any error of law
of procedure or found contrary to the
principles of natural justice, errors of
record and misreading of the evidence,
or where the conclusions of the High
Court are manifestly perverse and
unsupportable from the evidence on
record.”
5Page 57
As can be seen from the above case law, the
power vested with this Court is quite wide
and the Court can examine any case to prevent
miscarriage of justice.
23. Therefore, the High Court ought to have
granted the relief to the appellant by
holding that the extinguishment deed executed
with regard to the appellant’s said plot of
land on 09.08.2001, without following the
procedure contemplated under Section 31(1) &
(2) of the Specific Relief Act, 1963 and
Section 54 of the Transfer of Property Act,
1882, is void ab initio in law. The same is
required to be interfered with by this Court
in exercise of its appellate jurisdiction as
there is a grave miscarriage of justice and
the septuagenarian appellant has been
suffering unnecessarily for the past 14 years
at the hands of the Society and the
5Page 58
Sub-Registrar, who have violated the
provisions of law and deprived the appellant
of his valuable constitutional right
guaranteed under Article 300A of the
Constitution of India upon the said property.
Therefore, the appellant is entitled for the
relief as prayed for in this appeal.
24. The contention urged on behalf of the
respondents, namely that this Court has
already dismissed the SLP No.13255 of 2012
filed by the appellant earlier, wherein, this
Court has examined the correctness of the
order dated 08.11.2008 of the Joint Registrar
passed in exercise of his revisional
jurisdiction with regard to the appointment
of the receiver under Section 64 of the M.P.
State Cooperative Societies Act 1960, at the
instance of the respondents, has no relevance
to the reliefs sought for in the present
appeal. The prayer sought for in the present
appeal is with regard to cancellation of the
5Page 59
extinguishment deed and the subsequent sale
deed executed by Society in favour of
respondent No.5, who in turn has executed
another sale deed in favour of respondent
Nos. 6 and 7 with regard to the said plot of
land. Therefore, the prayer in the present
appeal is totally different from the one in
SLP No.13255 of 2012. The order dated
17.07.2013 passed in SLP No. 13255 of 2012 by
this Court, at para 4, is very clear with
regard to the extinguishment deed which reads
thus:
“4. It appears that after lapse
of 40 years, the first respondent
purported to have cancelled the
sale made in favour of the
petitioner’s deceased mother. On
9.8.2001, a deed styled as
Extinguishment Deed came to be
executed by the first respondent
before the Sub-registrar,
Bhopal-the legality of which deed
is required to be examined
separately. However, we do not
propose to say anything at this
stage.”

25. In so far as the document of compromise
deed dated 06.07.2004 is concerned, the sum
of Rs.6,50,000/- allegedly voluntarily
received by the appellant from the respondent
No.5 to put an end to the dispute over the
said property is also a void transaction, as
the same has been done during the pendency of
the proceedings before the Sub-Registrar in
relation to the dispute. The said compromise
deed is void ab initio in law and the same
cannot be put against the appellant so as to
deny him the relief sought by him in the
present appeal. Apart from the said reason,
the notice dated 12.07.2007 served upon the
appellant by the lawyer of respondent No.5
has rescinded the agreement dated 06.07.2004
and she has claimed the refund of 6,50,000/-,
to be returned with interest to her, failing
which she will file a suit for claim for
payment of Rs.6,50,000/- with interest. The
said notice is produced at Annexure ‘P-6’ in
the proceedings. The relevant clause 4 of the

said notice is extracted hereunder which
reads thus:-
 “4.That after receipt of money by
you frivolous disputes are being
raised by you. By raising
unnecessary disputes you have
violated compromise dated 6.7.2004.
Therefore, my client being
constrained (makes demand of the
amount paid to you). Therefore, you
are liable to return and pay to my
client the amount of Rs.6,50,000/-
(Rupees six lakh and fifty
thousand).
Therefore, by means of the notice
you are informed that the amount of
Rs.6,50,000/- (Rupees six lakh and
fifty thousand) and interest
thereon at bank rate from date of
receipt till the date of payment be
returned to my client within 30
days of receipt of this notice and
obtain a receipt in writing after
the said period my client shall be
entitled to take action before you
in the court of law in accordance
with law…”

 In view of the aforesaid demand notice,
since the agreement has been rescinded, it
does not subsist and the High Court by

placing reliance upon the same has committed
an error in fact and in law and has
wrongfully denied the relief to the appellant
even though the same was brought to the
notice of the High Court by the appellant in
the proceedings before it. For the reasons
stated supra, I have to grant the reliefs in
favour of the appellant as prayed by him and
quash the extinguishment deed dated
09.08.2001 along with the subsequent sale
deeds registered in favour of the respondent
No.5 who in turn has sold property in favour
of respondent Nos.6 and 7 without the
authority of law. The sale deed can be
cancelled under Section 31 of the Specific
Relief Act, 1963, by the competent civil
court if the same is challenged within the
period of limitation stipulated under Article
59 of the Limitation Act, 1963. Since the
facts are undisputed in the case on hand and
the respondent Society, after the lapse of 39
years has erroneously and illegally cancelled

the absolute sale deed registered in favour
of the appellant’s mother, the appellant has
acquired a valid and absolute title to the
property in question and the same could not
have been cancelled by the respondent Society
and the Sub-Registrar as it is void ab initio
in law. Hence, the High Court should have
responsibly exercised its extraordinary
jurisdiction and should have examined the
documents of the sale deed with respect to
the relevant provisions of the M.P
Co-operative Societies Act and Rules, 1962
and the Bye-laws of the Society. The
cancellation of the sale deed executed in
favour of the appellant’s mother in the year
1962 by way of the extinguishment deed could
not have been registered by the Sub-Registrar
as he is not empowered to do so. Hence, for
want of the competent jurisdiction, in
registering such document, the High Court
should have exercised its extraordinary
jurisdiction to annul the extinguishment deed

and the transactions of the subsequent sale
deeds, which has not been done by it.
Reliance has been placed upon the decision of
this Court in the case of CAG v. K.S.
Jagannathan17, wherein it has been held thus:
“19. Even had the Division Bench
issued a writ of mandamus giving the
directions which it did, if
circumstances of the case justified
such directions, the High Court would
have been entitled in law to do so for
even the courts in England could have
issued a writ of mandamus giving such
directions. Almost a hundred and
thirty years ago, Martin, B., in Mayor
of Rochester v. Regina said:
“But, were there no authority
upon the subject, we should be
prepared upon principle to affirm
the judgment of the Court of
Queen’s Bench. That court has
power, by the prerogative writ of
mandamus, to amend all errors
which tend to the oppression of
the subject or other
misgovernment, and ought to be
used when the law has provided no
specific remedy, and justice and
good government require that
there ought to be one for the
execution of the common law or
the provisions of a statute:
Comyn’s Digest, Mandamus
(A).... Instead of being
astute to discover reasons
17 (1986) 2 SCC 679
6Page 65
for not applying this great
constitutional remedy for
error and misgovernment, we
think it our duty to be
vigilant to apply it in
every case to which, by any
reasonable construction, it
can be made applicable.”
The principle enunciated in the above
case was approved and followed inKing
 v. Revising Barrister for the Borough
 of Hanley . In Hochtief Gammon case
this Court pointed out that the powers
of the courts in relation to the
orders of the government or an officer
of the government who has been
conferred any power under any statute,
which apparently confer on them
absolute discretionary powers, are not
confined to cases where such power is
exercised or refused to be exercised
on irrelevant considerations or on
erroneous ground or mala fide, and in
such a case a party would be entitled
to move the High Court for a writ of
 mandamus. In Padfield v. Minister of
 Agriculture, Fisheries and Food the
House of Lords held that where
Parliament had conferred a discretion
on the Minister of Agriculture,
Fisheries and Food, to appoint a
committee of investigation so that it
could be used to promote the policy
and objects of the Agricultural
Marketing Act, 1958, which were to be
determined by the construction of the
Act which was a matter of law for the
court and though there might be
reasons which would justify the
Minister in refusing to refer a
complaint to a committee of
investigation, the Minister’s
discretion was not unlimited and if it

appeared that the effect of his
refusal to appoint a committee of
investigation was to frustrate the
policy of the Act, the court was
entitled to interfere by an order of
mandamus. In Halsbury’s Laws of
England, 4th Edn., vol. I, para 89, it
is stated that the purpose of an order
of mandamus
“is to remedy defects of
justice; and accordingly it
will issue, to the end that
justice may be done, in all
cases where there is a specific
legal right and no specific
legal remedy for enforcing that
right; and it may issue in
cases where, although there is
an alternative legal remedy,
yet that mode of redress is
less convenient, beneficial and
effectual.”
20. There is thus no doubt that the
High Courts in India exercising their
jurisdiction under Article 226 have
the power to issue a writ of mandamus
or a writ in the nature of mandamus or
to pass orders and give necessary
directions where the government or a
public authority has failed to
exercise or has wrongly exercised the
discretion conferred upon it by a
statute or a rule or a policy decision
of the government or has exercised
such discretion mala fide or on
irrelevant considerations or by
ignoring the relevant considerations
and materials or in such a manner as
to frustrate the object of conferring
such discretion or the policy for
implementing which such discretion has
been conferred. In all such cases and

in any other fit and proper case a
High Court can, in the exercise of its
jurisdiction under Article 226, issue
a writ of mandamus or a writ in the
nature of mandamus or pass orders and
give directions to compel the
performance in a proper and lawful
manner of the discretion conferred
upon the government or a public
authority, and in a proper case, in
order to prevent injustice resulting
to the concerned parties, the court
may itself pass an order or give
directions which the government or the
public authority should have passed or
given had it properly and lawfully
exercised its discretion.”
 (Emphasis laid by me)
26. Further reliance has been placed upon the
decision of this Court in the case of Andi
Mukta Sadguru Shree Muktajee Vandas Swami
Suvarna Jayanti Mahotsav Smarak Trust v. V.R.
Rudani18, wherein it has been held thus:
“20. The term “authority” used in
Article 226, in the context, must
receive a liberal meaning unlike the
term in Article 12. Article 12 is
relevant only for the purpose of
enforcement of fundamental rights
under Article 32. Article 226 confers
power on the High Courts to issue
writs for enforcement of the
fundamental rights as well as
18 (1989) 2 SCC 691
6Page 68
non-fundamental rights. The words
“any person or authority” used in
Article 226 are, therefore, not to be
confined only to statutory
authorities and instrumentalities of
the State. They may cover any other
person or body performing public
duty. The form of the body concerned
is not very much relevant. What is
relevant is the nature of the duty
imposed on the body. The duty must be
judged in the light of positive
obligation owed by the person or
authority to the affected party. No
matter by what means the duty is
imposed, if a positive obligation
exists mandamus cannot be denied.
21. In Praga Tools Corpn. v. C.A.
Imanual this Court said that a
mandamus can issue against a person
or body to carry out the duties
placed on them by the statutes even
though they are not public officials
or statutory body. It was observed:
“It is, however, not necessary
that the person or the
authority on whom the
statutory duty is imposed need
be a public official or an
official body. A niandamus can
issue, for instance, to an
official of a society to
compel him to carry out the
terms of the statute under or
by which the society is
constituted or governed and
also to companies or
corporations to carry out
duties placed on them by the
statutes authorising their
undertakings. A mandamus would
also lie against a company
constituted by a statute for

the purpose of fulfilling
public responsibilities.”
22. Here again we may point out that
mandamus cannot be denied on the
ground that the duty to be enforced
is not imposed by the statute.
Commenting on the development of this
law, Professor de Smith states: “To
be enforceable by mandamus a public
duty does not necessarily have to be
one imposed by statute. It may be
sufficient for the duty to have been
imposed by charter, common law,
custom or even contract.”7 We share
this view. The judicial control over
the fast expanding maze of bodies
affecting the rights of the people
should not be put into watertight
compartment. It should remain
flexible to meet the requirements of
variable circumstances. Mandamus is a
very wide remedy which must be easily
available “to reach injustice
wherever it is found”. Technicalities
should not come in the way of
granting that relief under Article
226. We, therefore, reject the
contention urged for the appellants
on the maintainability of the writ
petition.”
27. Further, this Court has laid down the
following principles with respect to the writ
of certiorari in the 7 judge bench decision in
the case of Hari Vishnu Kamath v. Ahmad
Ishaque19:
19 AIR 1955 SC 233
6Page 70
“….(1) Certiorari will be issued for
correcting errors of jurisdiction,
as when an inferior Court or
Tribunal acts without jurisdiction or
in excess of it, or fails to
exercise it.
(2) Certiorari will also be issued
when the Court or Tribunal acts
illegally in the exercise of its
undoubted jurisdiction, as when it
decides without giving an
opportunity to the parties to be
heard, or violates the principles
of natural justice.
(3) The court issuing a writ of
certiorari acts in exercise of a
supervisory and not appellate
jurisdiction. One consequence of
this is that the court will not
review findings of facts reached by
the inferior Court or Tribunal, even
if they be erroneous.
(4) An error in the decision or
determination itself may also
be amenable to a writ of "certiorari"
if it is a manifest error apparent on
the face of the proceedings, e.g.,
when it is based on clear ignorance
or disregard of the provisions of
law. In other words, it is a patent
error which can be corrected by
"certiorari" but not a mere wrong
decision. What is an error apparent
on the face of the record cannot be
defined precisely or exhaustively,
there being an element of
indefiniteness inherent in its very
nature, and it must be left to be
determined judicially on the facts of
each case.”

28. Thus, the High Court has failed to exercise
its discretionary power which has resulted in a
grave miscarriage of justice, thereby,
depriving the valuable constitutional right
guaranteed under Article 300A of the
Constitution of India to the appellant. I,
hereby, set aside the said order of the learned
single Judge of the High Court and quash the
impugned instruments i.e. the extinguishment
deed dated 09.08.2001 and the subsequent sale
deeds dated 21.04.2004 and 11.07.2006 and
further direct the respondent Nos.6 and 7 to
vacate the said property and hand over the
possession of the same to the appellant. The
respondents are further directed to pay the
appellant a compensation amount of Rs.10 Lakhs
for his sufferings and the injustice caused to
him by the society for the last 14 years as he
was deprived of his right to enjoy the property
on account of the arbitrary and unilateral
action taken by the society in cancelling the

sale deed in respect of the property in
question executed in favour of his deceased
mother.
29. The appeal is allowed in the above terms.

 ……………………………………………………………J.
 [V.GOPALA GOWDA]


New Delhi,
August 25, 2015
7Page 73
Reportable
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
CIVIL APPEAL NO.6673 OF 2014
Satya Pal Anand Appellant(s)
 Versus
State of M.P. and Others Respondent(s)
O R D E R
In view of the difference of opinion between
us, the Registry is directed to place the matter before
Hon'ble the Chief Justice of India, so that an
appropriate Bench could be constituted for hearing the
matter.

......................J.
(Dipak Misra)
......................J.
(V. Gopala Gowda)
New Delhi;
August 25, 2015.

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