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certified copy =whether the compromise Ex. D3 is admissible in evidence or not? The compromise dated 27.11.1972 has become the basis of the decree dated 08.12.1972 passed by the Sub-Judge, Hoshiarpur. The perusal of Ex. D4 i.e., judgment and decree were passed as per the terms and conditions of compromise placed on file. As rightly observed by the courts below, the compromise has merged into a decree and has become part and parcel of it. To put it clear, the compromise had become a part of the decree which was passed by the court of Sub-Judge Ist Class, Hoshiarpur. Hence, it is a public document in terms of Section 74 of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872 (in short `the Act’) and certified copy of the public document prepared under Section 76 of the Act is admissible in evidence under Section 77 of the said Act. A certified copy of a public document is admissible in evidence without being proved by calling 8

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REPORTABLE

 IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA

 CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION

 CIVIL APPEAL NOs. 8879-8880 OF 2011

 (Arising out of SLP (C) Nos. 2708-09 of 2008

Jaswant Singh .... Appellant (s)

 Versus

Gurdev Singh & Ors. .... Respondent(s)

 J U D G M E N T 

P. Sathasivam, J.

1) Leave granted.

2) These appeals are filed against the common final 

judgment and order dated 24.09.2007 passed by the High 

Court of Punjab & Haryana at Chandigarh in Regular Second 

Appeal (RSA) Nos. 4473 and 4776 of 2004 whereby the High 

Court dismissed both the appeals filed by the appellant herein.

3) Brief facts:

a) Jaswant Singh-appellant herein filed a Civil Suit being 

No. 3 of 1997 in the court of Civil Judge, (Jr. Division) 

Hoshiarpur for declaration to the effect that he was the owner 

 1

and in possession of land measuring 101 kanals 16 marlas 

situated in village Simbli, H.B. No. 272, Tehsil and District 

Hoshiarpur and for correction of the revenue entries in 

Column No. 4 of Jamabandi Register wherein the respondents 

herein had been wrongly shown to be the owners. It was 

claimed in that suit that one Shri Hazara Singh, s/o Shri 

Nihal Singh was the owner of the properties in village Simbli, 

Bajraur and Chabbewal and after his death on 06.12.1972, by 

virtue of a Will dated 05.12.1971, he transferred his properties 

in favour of the appellant herein and the names of the 

respondents mentioned in the Jamabandi Register were 

wrong, illegal and liable to be corrected. 

b) Even as early as on 05.06.1972, a civil suit was filed by 

the appellant herein in the court of sub-Judge, First Class, 

Hoshiarpur seeking permanent injunction against one Amar 

Kaur and others restraining them from interfering in the land 

situated in Simbli. During the pendency of the suit, the 

parties entered into a compromise dated 27.11.1972 and on 

that basis the suit was decreed on 08.12.1972 and Mutation 

No. 1536 was sanctioned in favour of the appellant herein with 

 2

respect to 12-1/2 acres of land and the same was delivered to 

him which he had been in possession since 16.02.1973. 

Respondent No. 1 herein and others considered Jaswant Singh 

to be the owner of 8 acres and regarding the remaining 4-1/2 

acres of land, he was considered to be in mere permissive 

possession as it was given to him in lieu of his father's share 

in village Simbli, Chabbewal and Bajrawar for the purposes of 

cultivation only. The appellant took various steps to change 

the names in the revenue entries but during this whole period, 

the revenue entries remained unchanged in the name of 

Hazara Singh and hence the appellant herein filed civil suit for 

correction of those entries in Jamabandi. 

c) Gurdev Singh-Respondent No. 1 herein, s/o Shri Karnail 

Singh filed a civil suit being RBT CS No. 145 of 1998 in the 

same Court and the matter was clubbed with Civil Suit No. 3 

of 1997 alleging therein that he was co-sharer in 1/4th share of 

land of Hazara Singh in village Simbli, = share in village 

Chabbewal and 1/4th share in village Bajraur as Hazara Singh 

was brother of their grand father. Vide order dated 

20.04.2001, the civil Judge decreed the suit filed by Jaswant 

 3

Singh-appellant herein and dismissed the suit filed by Gurdev 

Singh-Respondent No. 1 herein. 

d) Aggrieved by the order dated 20.04.2001, Respondent No. 

1 herein filed RBT Civil Appeal Nos. 68 & 75 of 

07.06.2001/04.06.2004 before the court of Additional District 

Judge (Ad-hoc), Fast Track Court-II, Hoshiarpur. Vide order 

dated 28.09.2004, the Additional District Judge set aside the 

judgment and order dated 20.04.2001 passed by the Civil 

Judge (Jr. Division), Hoshiarpur and allowed the appeal filed 

against Civil Suit No. 3 of 1997 to the extent that Jaswant 

Singh-appellant herein is the owner of 8 acres of land and in 

possession of 4-1/2 acres of land at village Simbli, in view of 

compromise dated 27.11.1972. Feeling aggrieved, Jaswant 

Singh-appellant herein filed RSA Nos. 4473 and 4776 of 2004 

before the High Court of Punjab & Haryana at Chandigarh 

whereby vide common judgment and order dated 24.09.2007, 

the High Court dismissed both the appeals. The said order is 

under challenge before this Court in these appeals by way of 

special leave.

 4

4) Heard Mr. A.V. Palli, learned counsel for the appellant 

and Shri Chinmay Khaladkar, learned counsel for the 

respondents.

5) As stated earlier, the appellant filed a suit for permanent 

injunction on 05.06.1972 alleging himself to be in possession 

as a co-sharer of land situated in village Simbli. In the said 

suit, the parties entered into a compromise and on the basis of 

the said compromise (Ex.P1), a decree was passed on 

08.12.1972. The interpretation of the said compromise is in 

dispute in the present proceedings. As per the appellant, he 

became the owner and in possession of 12 = acres of land 

situated in village Simbli whereas as per the defendants, the 

plaintiff was admitted to be the owner of 8 acres of land 

situated in village Simbli but was given possession of another 

land measuring 4= acres of land in respect of his share 

situated in village Chhabewal and Bajrawar. The compromise 

decree was produced as Ex. P1 and the compromise deed was 

produced as Ex.D3.

6) In order to substantiate his claim, the appellant-plaintiff 

examined one Ajit Kumar Walia as PW-1 who deposed before 

 5

the Court that the file relating to the decree is not available 

since the record was burnt due to fire which broke out in the 

record room on 16.06.1998. Ashwani Kumar, PW-3, was also 

examined who in turn, deposed that Rupt No. 242 dated 

16.02.1973 is not available in his record despite best efforts 

made by him. 

7) On the other hand, from the side of the respondent-

Defendant, one Harbhajan Singh was examined as DW-1, who 

had endorsed the fact that a compromise had taken place 

between the parties and a decree was passed on the basis of 

that compromise. He along with Dhan Kaur, Pritam Kaur, 

Arjan Singh, Bakshish Singh and Karam Singh were the 

witnesses to the compromise. He asserted that as per the 

compromise, the plaintiff-Jaswant Singh was given only 8 

acres of land in village Simbli. Ashwani Kumar, Patwari who 

was examined as DW-3, had brought Mutation No. 1536 of 

Hazara Singh, certified copy of which is produced as Ex. DW 

3/A and the entry of mutation is at S.No. 22. 

8) It is further seen that based on the terms arrived at in 

the compromise and the decree dated 08.11.1972, the 

 6

mutation of the land situated in village Simbli was sanctioned. 

Even though the appellant-Jaswant Singh raised an objection 

as to the compromise dated 27.11.1972, (Ex.D3), admittedly, 

the same has not been challenged by him either in his plaint 

or in the suit filed by him or in the written statement filed in 

the suit by the defendant-Gurdev Singh. It is relevant to point 

out that in paragraph 3 of the plaint, the appellant-Jaswant 

Singh categorically mentioned that the parties have 

compromised and the decree dated 08.12.1972 was passed. 

In the written statement filed by the defendant-Gurdev Singh 

and others, it was categorically pleaded that the decree dated 

08.12.1972 was passed solely on the basis of the compromise 

entered into between the parties. The details of the 

compromise were also given in the written statement filed on 

21.01.1999 by Gurdev Singh. Though in the replication to the 

amended written statement filed by Jaswant Singh, the terms 

and conditions of the compromise were not admitted but were 

also not denied and even it was pleaded that these terms and 

conditions of the compromise are a matter of record. The 

compromise dated 27.11.1972 was not challenged by Jaswant 

 7

Singh rather it can be said that he also relied upon it because 

the decree upon which he claims ownership, has been passed 

only on the basis of this compromise dated 27.11.1992 

(Ex. D3).

9) Now the other question which remains to be decided is 

whether the compromise Ex. D3 is admissible in evidence or 

not? The compromise dated 27.11.1972 has become the basis 

of the decree dated 08.12.1972 passed by the Sub-Judge, 

Hoshiarpur. The perusal of Ex. D4 i.e., judgment and decree 

were passed as per the terms and conditions of compromise 

placed on file. As rightly observed by the courts below, the 

compromise has merged into a decree and has become part 

and parcel of it. To put it clear, the compromise had become a 

part of the decree which was passed by the court of Sub-Judge 

Ist Class, Hoshiarpur. Hence, it is a public document in terms 

of Section 74 of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872 (in short `the 

Act') and certified copy of the public document prepared under 

Section 76 of the Act is admissible in evidence under Section 

77 of the said Act. A certified copy of a public document is 

admissible in evidence without being proved by calling 

 8

witness. Inasmuch as the decree was passed and drafted in 

the light of the compromise entered into between the parties, 

viz., the plaintiff and the defendants, the certified copy of such 

document which was produced before the Court, there is 

presumption as to the genuineness of such certified copy 

under Section 78 of the Act. We have already noted that the 

appellant-Jaswant Singh has not challenged the genuineness 

of certified copy in any manner. Although the record of the 

Court has been proved to be burnt in a fire in Judicial Record 

Room, Hoshiarpur on 16.06.1998, but the certified copy of the 

compromise (Ex.D3), which is the part of the decree was 

obtained from the record room on 24.08.1988 and the Decree 

Ex.D4 was got issued on 12.09.1984. In those circumstances, 

there is no reason to doubt the authenticity of compromise 

(Ex.D3). Even otherwise, as rightly observed by the courts 

below, the appellant-Jaswant Singh had not filed any other 

substitute of the document Ex.D3, on the basis of which the 

decree (Ex.D4) had been said to be passed. As stated earlier, 

in view of the fact that the decree dated 08.12.1972 clearly 

says that the suit is partly decreed in favour of the plaintiff as 

 9

per the terms of the compromise placed on file, there can be 

no other way to interpret the decree except in terms and 

conditions of the compromise (Ex.D3). 

10) Thus, in view of the above discussion, it is to be held that 

the decree dated 08.12.1972 is to be read and interpreted in 

terms of the compromise (Ex.D3) dated 27.11.1972. We are 

satisfied that the judgment and decree passed by the lower 

appellate Court as affirmed by the High Court is based upon 

proper appreciation of the terms of compromise (Ex.D3) and 

do not find any illegality or irregularity for interference. 

11) Consequently, the appeals fail and are accordingly 

dismissed. There shall be no order as to costs.

 ...................

 ..............................J. 

 (P. SATHASIVAM) 


...............................................J. 

 (JASTI CHELAMESWAR) 

NEW DELHI;

OCTOBER 21, 2011.  1

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