Suit for Declaration , Mandatory Injunction and for accounts and permanent injunction against companies , firms and immovable properties of Hindu Joint family – Trial court granted interim injunction order for not to sale and directed to submit audit reports regularly before the court – High court dismissed the injunction order as the suit is not maintainable against company properties and firms( even though corporate veil was lifted in partition suits as per Apex court) and as the suit is bad for non-joinder of necessary parties and dismissed the I.A. stating that when the main relief can not be granted, no interim injunction should be given – Apex court held that we are of the opinion that while dealing with a matter relating to vacation of order of temporary injunction, it was not open for the High Court to give a finding on the main issue relating to maintainability of the suit and the family settlement reached between the parties. =
Plaintiffs/appellants-Babulal and others filed a suit for
declaration, mandatory injunction, rendition of accounts and permanent
injunction against the defendants/non-applicants =
Resultantly, the application of the plaintiffs-
appellants for temporary injunction against the non-applicants and the
counter temporary injunction application filed on behalf of the non-
applicants were partly allowed and it was ordered that till the decision of
the original suit:-
1. The applicants and non-applicants no.1 to 31 and the non-applicants
no.36 to 43 shall not sell/transfer the immovable properties as mentioned
in Schedule “Ka” to “Cha” and nor shall they create any substantial charge
on the said properties.
2. The Companies/Partnership firms controlled and run by the parties of
which the details have been given in Schedule “Ka” to “Cha” regarding them
the audited accounts of income and expenditure half yearly/annually
whichever is got done in the normal sequence shall be presented before this
Apart from this the other prayers which have been made by both the
parties are rejected. =
Reliance Natural Resources Ltd. v. Reliance Industries Ltd. (2010) 7 SCC 1
and in the case of Sangram Singh P. Gaekwad and others v. Shantadevi P.
Gaekwad (D) Through LRs. & Ors. (2005) 11 SCC 314 and submitted that though
a company incorporated under the Companies Act is a body corporate, in
certain situations, its corporate veil can be lifted and that the suit for
partition could be filed against companies also.
The High Court by impugned judgment and order dated 14th March, 2012
observed as follows:
”6………It is also significant to note that the plaintiffs have impleaded the
companies, partnership firms and proprietary concerns and HUFs as the party
defendants, and the said companies and firms have also been shown as the
properties or the assets of the HUF in the schedule ‘Gha’ annexed to the
This court fails to understand as to how the companies which are
incorporated under the Companies Act having perpetual seal and separate
entity could be the assets of the HUF as alleged by the plaintiffs and as
to how the companies could be divided by metes and bounds by way of
partition as prayed for in the suit.
The plaintiffs in the suit have also
prayed for mandatory injunction seeking direction against the defendant-
companies alongwith other defendants to act upon the family settlement,
alleged to have taken place on 20.12.2007 between the Niranjan Lal Data
Group and Babu Lal Data Group, and have also sought the direction against
the said companies to execute the documents and handover the possession of
the properties of the said companies and firms etc.
This court also fails
to understand as to how the alleged family settlement between the NLD Group
and BLD Group would be binding to the defendant companies and firms, apart
from the issue as to whether the alleged document dated 20.12.2007 could be
called a family settlement.
Under the circumstances this court finds much
substance in the submission made by the learned counsel for the appellants
that the suit filed by the plaintiffs is not only bad for mis-joinder of
parties and of causes of action, but also for non-joinder of necessary
parties and that the suit in the present form would not be maintainable in
the eye of law.
7. So far as merits of the case are concerned, according to the
respondents-plaintiffs, all the properties mentioned in the Schedules ‘Ka’
to ‘Chha’ annexed to the plaint, were purchased from the nucleus of the
joint family properties, and as per the family settlement dated 20.12.07,
the said properties were required to be divided amongst the family members
of the plaintiff No. 1 and the defendant Nos.1 to 9.
In this regard, it is
pertinent to note that the entire suit of the plaintiffs is based on the so-
called family settlement which had allegedly taken place between the NLD
group and BLD group on 20.12.07.
From the bare perusal of the said document
it transpires that it is the minutes of the meeting of Data Group Family
dated 20.12.07, which was signed by Mr. Vijay Data for NLD Group and Mr.
Babu Lal Data for BLD Group. Apart from the fact that there is not a
whisper in the said document that the corpus of the companies mentioned in
the said document was provided by the HUF or that the other properties
mentioned in the said document were the HUF properties, the said document
has also not been signed by the other coparceners of the alleged HUF except
by Mr. Vijay Data and Mr. Babu Lal Data.
Such a document by no stretch of
imagination could be said to be a family settlement. However, even if it is
believed to be a family settlement, and even if it is held that the same
was not required to be signed by all the coparceners, then also there is
nothing on the record to suggest that it was a memorandum prepared after
the family arrangement which had already been made earlier, not required to
be registered. ………….
“9. In this regard it is pertinent to note that though the concerned
defendants had raised contentious issues as regards the maintainability of
the suit, mis-joinder of parties and of causes of action, suppression of
material facts by the plaintiffs etc., the lower court has not considered
the same and has held that the plaintiffs had established the prima facie
case in their favour.
In the opinion of this court such a finding of the
lower court in the impugned order is not only erroneous but also perverse.
When the suit on the face of it suffered from the mis-joinder of parties
and of causes of action and was not prima facie tenable in the eye of law,
the lower court has committed serious error of law and facts in holding
that the plaintiffs had established a prima facie case.
If the plaintiffs
were not entitled to the final reliefs in the suit, they could not be
granted temporary injunction as prayed for during the pendency of the
Apex court held that
we are of the opinion that while
dealing with a matter relating to vacation of order of temporary
injunction, it was not open for the High Court to give a finding on the
main issue relating to maintainability of the suit and the family
settlement reached between the parties.
8. In view of the finding aforesaid, we are inclined to interfere with
the judgment and order dated 14th March, 2012 passed by the High Court of
Judicature for Rajasthan, Bench at Jaipur in S.B. Civil Misc. Appeal
No.2218 of 2011 etc. We, accordingly, set aside the impugned judgment and
remit back the matter to the High Court for its fresh disposal after
hearing the parties.