Friday, 13 November 2020

What amounts to suppression of material facts in litigation?

 Suppression of Facts:


66. The tenants have contended that two of the owners' children got employment, perhaps, pending the appeal. It was not brought to the Appellate Court's notice. It is suppression. At least, the tenants assert so.


67. S.P. Chengalraya Naidu is the oft-quoted judgment on fraud and its ramification in the judicial arena. It invokes Chief Justice Edward Coke's aphoristic assertion that "Fraud avoids all judicial acts, ecclesiastical or temporal". It reiterates that a judgment or decree obtained by playing fraud on the court is a nullity and non est in the eyes of the law.


68. As a general rule, suppression of a material fact by a litigant, according to the Supreme Court1, disqualifies such litigant from obtaining any relief. This rule has been evolved out of the need of the Courts to deter a litigant from abusing the process of Court by deceiving it. But the suppressed fact must be a material one in the sense that had it not been suppressed it would have affected the merits of the case. It must be a matter material for the consideration of the Court, whatever view the Court may have taken.


69. The owners have a counter allegation: the tenants have business at another place, too. But they suppressed that fact.


70. At any rate, I see no plea taken in the CA about the suppression of a material fact: two of the children getting employment. But it was argued. I reckon among the many children of the owners, two getting employment in thirty years hardly affects their case prospects. Nor does it amount to a material suppression.

 IN THE HIGH COURT OF BOMBAY

Civil Revision Application No. 497 of 2016

Decided On: 06.09.2019


Rukminibai Motiram Kshirsagar  Vs.  Manoramabai Mallikarjun Bagale


Hon'ble Judges/Coram:

Dama Seshadri Naidu, J.

Citation: 2020(2) MHLJ 756,MANU/MH/2504/2019.

Read full Judgment here: Click here

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