The Supreme Court stated that a suit simpliciter for a permanent injunction without demanding declaration of title could only be maintained if the plaintiff’s title is clear and unclouded. If the matter involves complicated questions of fact and law relating to title, the Court must relegate the parties to the remedy of a comprehensive suit for declaration of title, rather than deciding the issue in a suit for mere injunction, according to the bench of Justices L. Nageswara Rao and B.R. Gavai.
The Trial Court granted a perpetual injunction against the defendants, in this case of T.V. Ramakrishna Reddy Vs M. Mallappa LL 2021 SC 423, preventing them or anybody claiming through them from interfering with the plaintiff’s peaceful possession and enjoyment of the suit property. The defendants’ appeal to the Karnataka High Court was dismissed, with the court ruling that the claim simpliciter for a perpetual injunction without a declaration of title was not tenable.
The bench noted that in the preceding instance, it was held that if the plaintiff’s title is clear and unclouded, a claim for injunction might be decided based on the possession determination, it held:
“It could thus be seen that this Court in unequivocal terms has held that where the plaintiff’s title is not in dispute or under a cloud, a suit for injunction could be decided with reference to the finding on possession. It has been clearly held that if the matter involves complicated questions of fact and law relating to title, the Court will relegate the parties to the remedy by way of comprehensive suit for declaration of title, instead of deciding the issue in a suit for mere injunction.”
Similar findings were made by the same panel in dismissing an appeal filed against a Kerala High Court verdict that raised the same legal difficulties.