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Smt. Anuradha Kapoor vs Shri Ashok Kapoor on 12 October, 2018

 IN THE COURT OF PRAVEEN KUMAR: ADDITIONAL
DISTRICT JUDGE­05 :NEW DELHI DISTRICT, PATIALA
HOUSE COURTS, NEW DELHI.
Civil Suit No.57731/2016     (Fifteen Years Old Case)
In the matter of:
1. Smt. Anuradha Kapoor
    W/o Late Shri Ajay Kapoor

2. Miss. Yoshita Kapoor
    D/o Late Shri Ajay Kapoor 

3. Miss. Kanika Kapoor
    D/o Late Shri Ajay Kapoor 

4. Akash
    S/o late Shri Ajay Kapoor 
    All R/o S­94, Greater Kailash,
    Part­I, New Delhi    ………………Plaintiffs

Versus  

1. Shri Ashok Kapoor
    S/o Late Yashpal Kapoor
    R/o Flat No.C­4, Ansal Apartment
    6, Aurangzeb Road, New Delhi

2. Shri Ashwani Kapoor (Deceased)
    S/o Late Yashpal Kapoor

    Through Legal Representatives ­
    (a) Smt. Alaka Kapoor
      W/o Late Shri Ashwani Kapoor
    
    (b) Miss. Kritika Kapoor
D/o Late Shri Ashwani Kapoor
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Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.1 of 13
    (c) Miss.Kavika Kapoor
D/o Late Shri Ashwani Kapoor
Represented through her Natural 
Guardian (Mother)
Smt. Alaka Kapoor

    (d) Miss. Kuvira Kapoor
    D/o Late Shri Ashwani Kapoor
Represented through her Natural 
Guardian (Mother)
Smt. Alaka Kapoor

    All R/o 245, Est Loraine
    St. Apt. 141, Glendale
    California (C.A.)
    U.S.A.

3. Smt. Anjali Sarin
    D/o Late Yashpal Kapoor
    R/o C­7, Maharani Bagh
    New Delhi­110065

4. Smt. Ambika Vij
    D/o Late Yashpal Kapoor
    R/o 22­B, Masjid Moth
    Phase­II, New Delhi
5. Land  Development Officer
    Land  Development Officer
    Government of India
    Ministry of Urban Development  OA
    Nirman Bhawan, New Delhi           ………………Defendants

Date of institution of the case          :  22.07.2003
Date of arguments        :  24.09.2018
Date of judgment        :  12.10.2018

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Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.2 of 13
JUDGMENT:

1. This is a suit for declaration and injunction filed by
the plaintiffs against the defendants.

2. On 31.08.2018 suo moto following preliminary issue
was framed by this court :­
“Whether   the   suit   of   the   plaintiff   is   maintainable   in   the
present form?” 

3. Since  it   is   purely   a  legal   issue   falling   under   Order
XIV Rule 2 CPC, it was treated as a preliminary issue. This Court
is conscious that for deciding a preliminary issue, the contents of
the   plaint   and   the   annexures   thereto   have   to   be   deemed   to   be
correct and are only to be considered.

4. Plaintiffs,   widow   and   children   of   late   Sh.   Ajay
Kapoor, have filed the present suit for declaration that they be
declared   1/3rd   owner   or   in   the   alternative   1/5th   owner   of   the
property bearing no.32 Golf Links, New Delhi (in short ‘the suit
property’)   besides   other   reliefs.   It   is   averred   that   Smt.   Kailash
Kapoor, mother of Sh. Ajay Kapoor, owned the suit property. She
died   on   31.10.1992   leaving   behind   a   Will   dated   14.07.1992
where­under   she   bequeathed   the   suit   property   in   favour   of
defendants   no.   1  and   2  with   a   life   interest   to   her   husband   Sh.
Yashpal   Kapoor.   Subsequently,   an   oral   family   settlement   was
entered   into   between   Yashpal   Kapoor,   Ajay   Kapoor   and
defendants   no.   1   to   4   where­under   it   was   agreed   that   Yashpal

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Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.3 of 13
Kapoor and defendants no.1 and 2 shall be the only joint owners
of   the   suit   property.   The   said   oral   family   settlement   was   duly
recorded   in   the   memorandum   of   family   settlement   dated
15.11.1992 executed by the abovesaid parties. It is averred that
Sh. Yashpal Kapoor died on 01.03.1993 leaving behind his Will
dated 19.11.1992 where­under he bequeathed his 1/3rd share in
the suit property in favour of Sh. Ajay Kapoor. It is averred that
by virtue of Will dated 19.11.1992 of Sh. Yashpal Kapoor, late
Sh. Ajay Kapoor and through him the plaintiffs have become the
absolute owner to the extent of 1/3rd of the suit property. It is
averred that defendants no. 1 to 4 sought to resolve their disputes
inter   se  with   respect   to   the   estate   left   behind   by   their   parents
through   arbitration   and,   consequently,   collusive   award   dated
28.10.2002 and judgment/decree dated 13.12.2002 were passed at
the   back   of   late   Sh.   Ajay   Kapoor/plaintiffs.     It   is   averred   that
defendants no. 1 to 4 have filed an application for mutation with
defendant   no.   5   seeking   mutation   of   the   suit   property   in   their
names in terms of the abovesaid award/judgment and decree. It is
averred that no legal or valid adoption of late Sh. Ajay Kapoor by
Sh.   Bishan   Dass   and   Smt.   Murti   Devi   had   taken   place   and,
therefore, late Sh. Ajay Kapoor continued to be the son of Smt.
and Sh. Yashpal Kapoor. It is averred that the adoption deed dated
13.02.1960 is invalid and has no more sanctity in the eyes of law.
In the plaint, the plaintiff has prayed for the following reliefs :­

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Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.4 of 13
“(a) pass a decree in favour of the Plaintiffs and against the
Defendants no. 1 to 4 and decree that Plaintiffs are 1/3rd
owners of the property bearing No.32, Golf Link, New Delhi.

 

(b) pass a decree for permanent injunction in favour of the
Plaintiffs restraining the Defendants no. 1 to 4, their heirs,
agents,   employees   or   any   other   person   claiming   through
them in particular Shri Somnath Vij S/o Sh. Ishwar Das Vij,
R/o   D­16,   Ajay   Enclave,   New   Delhi­110018   the   Power   of
Attorney holder of the Defendants no.1 to 4 from directly or
indirectly transferring, alienating, encumbering or dealing in
any manner or parting with possession of the whole or any
part of the property No.32, Golf Links, New Delhi.

(c) In the alternative, in the event this Hon’ble Court for any
reason   is   of   the   opinion/holds   that   the   Plaintiffs   are   not
entitled to prayer (a), declarer that the Plaintiffs are 1/5th
owners of the suit property. 

(d)   declare   that   the   Adoption   Deed   dated   13th   February,
1960 is not legal and valid and no actual adoption had taken
place of Late Shri Ajay Kapoor by Smt.  Sh. Bishambhar
Das  and as  such he continued  to be the  son of  Late Shri
Yashpal Kapoor and Smt. Kailash Kapoor. 

(e)   declare   that   the   judgment   and   decreed   dated   13th
December,   2002   passed   in   Suit   No.   2187/93   has   been
obtained   by   the   Defendants   no.1   to   4   fraudulently   and   in
collusion with each other and is not binding on the Plaintiffs
and does not in any manner  affect  their  rights in the suit
property. 

(f) restrain Defendant No.5 from mutating the suit property
in any name(s) on the basis of award dated 28th December,
2002/judgment   and   decree   dated   13th   December,   2002
passed in Suit No.2187/93 and especially ignoring the share
of the Plaintiffs as explained in the present suit. 

(g)   award   costs   of   the   present   suit   to   the   plaintiffs   and
against the defendants. 

(h) pass such other order of orders as this Hon’ble Court
may deem fit and proper in the facts and circumstances of
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Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.5 of 13
the case”.

 

5. I have heard Sh. Sanjeev Anand, Ld. Counsel for the
plaintiffs; Ms. Preeti Gupta, Ld. Counsel of  defendant no. 3; Sh.
Jalaj Aggarwal, Ld. Counsel for defendant no.5 and Sh. Irfan, Ld.
Counsel   for   defendant   no.   6.   Ld.   Counsel   for   the   plaintiff   has
contended   that   the   present   suit   is   maintainable   as   presumption
under Section 16 of the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act,
1956 as to registered documents relating to adoption is rebuttable
on the basis of evidence. According to him, the suit is not barred
by limitation. In support of his contentions, he has relied upon
judgments ­ Lal Man Vs. Dy. Director of Consolidation, (1998) 8
SCC 693 and Bhawar Lal Vs. State of M.P., (2002) 10 SCC 143.
On the other hand, Ld. Counsel for defendant no. 6 has contended
that   at   least   since   July   1993   the   plaintiffs   and   late   Sh.   Ajay
Kapoor were aware of the alleged adoption but the suit was filed
in  2003  challenging  the   said  adoption  and,  as   such,   the  suit  is
barred by limitation. He has drawn attention of this Court to para
no. 10 of the plaint. 

6. I have gone through the file as well as the judgments
cited before me.

7. From the wedlock of Sh. Yashpal Kapoor and Smt.

Kailash Kapoor born :­
Son  Daughter Son  Son Daughter
Ajay Kapoor Anjali Sarin  Ashwani Kapoor Ashok Kapoor Ambika Vij
(since deceased) Defendant no.3 Defendant no.2 Defendant no.1 Defendant no.4

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Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.6 of 13

8. Vide Deed of Adoption duly registered with the Sub­
Registrar,   New   Delhi   on   13.02.1960,   Sh.   Yashpal   Kapoor   and
Smt.   Kailash   Kapoor   gave   in   adoption   their   son   late   Sh.   Ajay
Kapoor and Smt. Anjali Sarin (defendant no.3) to Sh. Bishan Das
and   Smt.   Murti   Devi   and   this   fact   is   duly   mentioned   in   the
memorandum of family settlement dated 15.11.1992 filed by the
plaintiffs themselves.

9. The plaintiffs are claiming for a decree of declaration that
they be declared 1/3rd owners of the suit property on the basis of the
Will dated 19.11.1992 of Sh. Yashpal Kapoor. The relevant para of
the plaint is reproduced herein­below :­
“7. Shri Yashpal Kapoor died on 1st March, 1993 leaving
behind  a  Will  dated  19th  November, 1992  whereunder  he
bequeathed his 1/3rd share in the suit property in favour of
Sh.   Ajay   Kapoor.   The   Plaintiffs   have   in   the   hand   the
affidavits   dated   15.01.2002   and   24.01.2002   of   the   two
attesting witnesses to the Will, Mr. S.C. Kapoor S/o Late Sh.
J.S.     Kapoor, R/o 14­CD, Adarsh Nagar, Lucknow (U.P.)
and   Sh.   G.P.   Sinha   S/o   Late   Sh.   S.P.   Sinha,   R/o   R/H,
Refinery Township, Begusarai,. The said attesting witnesses
have stated in their affidavits that Late Sh. Yashpal Kapoor
had made a Will dated 18th November, 1992 to which they
were attesting witnesses and that it was the intention and will
of Late Shri Yashpal Kapoor that the property bearing No.
32,   Gold   Links,   New   Delhi   be   shared   by   his   three   sons
namely   Sh.   Ajay   Kapoor,   Shri   Ashwani   Kapoor   and   Shri
Ashok Kapoor in equal proportions. The Plaintiff No.1 had
also seen the copy of the Will dated 18th November, 1992
which she is presently not able to locate/trace out…”

(Emphasis Mine)

10. Assuming   for   the   sake   of   arguments   that   Sh.   Yashpal
Kapoor   had   executed   the   alleged   Will   dated   19.11.1992   (or

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Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.7 of 13
18.11.1992), even then the plaintiffs are not entitled to 1/3rd share in
the suit property for the reason that the suit property was purchased by
the mother of late Sh. Ajay Kapoor who died leaving behind a Will
dated   14.07.1992   where­under   she   bequeathed   the   suit   property   in
favour   of   defendant   no.1   and   2   herein   with   a   life   interest   to   her
husband Sh. Yashpal Kapoor. Thus, the defendant no. 1 and 2 became
the owners of the suit property in the proportion of 50 per cent each
on   the   death   of   Smt.   Kailash   Kapoor   on   31.10.1992.   Sh.   Yashpal
Kapoor   could   not   have   bequeathed   the   ownership   of   property   in
favour of late Sh. Ajay Kapoor of which he himself was not the owner
as he only had right of residence in the suit property during his life
time. The Will of Smt. Kailash Kapoor was never challenged by late
Sh. Ajay Kapoor during his life time. Thus, the plaintiffs cannot claim
to be declared 1/3rd owner of the suit property on the basis of the
alleged Will of Sh. Yashpal Kapoor.

11. In the alternative, the plaintiffs have claimed that they be
declared 1/5th owners of the suit property. The plaintiffs have denied
any legal and valid adoption of late Sh. Ajay Kapoor having taken
place.   In   this   regard,   the   memorandum   of   family   settlement   dated
15.11.1992 is relevant and the same is reproduced herein­below :­
“Memorandum of family settlement and understanding

3rd PARTY

“This memorandum of family settlement is made on this 15 th
day  of  November  in  the  year  1992,  between  Shri  Yashpal
Kapoor son of Late Lajpat Rai Kapoor R/o 32 Golf Lilnks,

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Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.8 of 13
New Delhi as FIRST PARTY (adopted father), as SECOND
PARTY,   ANJALI   SARIN   W/o   Shri   Sunil   Sarin   R/o   C­7,
Maharani   Bagh,   New   Delhi   as   THIRD   Party   and   Shri
ASHWANI KAPOOR S/o Shri Yashpal Kapoor presently at
32 Golf Links, New Delhi as FOURTH PARTY, Shri ASHOK
KAPOOR S/O Yashpal Kapoor R/o 32 Golf Links, New Delhi
as FIFTH PARTY and Smt. AMBIKA VIJ W/o Shri Atul Vij
R/o 22­B, DDA Flats, Phase­I, Masjid Moth, New Delhi as
SIXTH PARTY.

WHREAS  Smt. Kailash  Kapoor  w/o  Shri  Yashpal  Kapoor,
the First Party, died on 30th  October, 1992 leaving behind
properties both movable and immovable. 

AND WHEREAS Shri Ajay Kapoor, Second Party and Smt.
Anjali Sarin, Third Party are the natural born children of
Shri Yashpal Kapoor and the deceased Smt. Kailash Kapoor
and   had   been   adopted   as   son   and   daughter   by   late   Shri
Bishan Das Galhotra vide Adoption Deed No.(not legible).

AND WHEREAS late Shri Bishan Das Galhotra died leaving
as legal heirs, his widow Smt. Ram Murti alias Murti Devi,
adopted son Shri Ajay Kapoor, adopted daughter Smt. Anjali
Sarin, and Smt. Kailash Kapoor being the natural daughter
as his only legal heirs.

AND WHEREAS on the death of Late Smt. Ram Murti Alias
Murti   Devi   W/o   Late   Shri   Bishan   Das   Galhotra   had   left
behind movable and immovable properties and other various
assets,   which   were   only   received   by   Shri   Ajay   Kapoor,
Second Party with the consent of two legal heirs namely Late
Smt.   Kailash   Kapoor   and   Smt.   Anjali   Sarin,   Third   Party,
who had relinquished their rights/claims in favour of Shri
Ajay   Kapoor,   Second   Party,   and   for   which   various
documents were got executed by Shri Ajay Kapoor, Second
Party, from them. 

AND   WHEREAS   Smt.   Anjali   Sarin,   Third   party   and   Shri
Ajay   Kapoor,   Second   Party,   have   no   claim   and/or   right
and/or interest in the movable and immovable property and
assets of Late Smt. Kailash Kapoor. 

AND WHEREAS the said Shri Yashpal Kapoor, First Party,
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Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.9 of 13
Ashwani  Kapor, Fourth  Party,  Ashok  Kapoor, Fifth   Party
and Ambika Vij Sixth Party are the only legal heirs of late
Smt. Kailash Kapoor.

AND WHEREAS in order to avoid any future disputes and
differences,   the   parties   hereto   had   entered   into   a   Family
Settlement which has been acted upon and are not desirous
of   reducing   in   writing   the   terms   of   the   said   Family
Settlement.

It   is   hereby   recorded   and   declared   by   and   between   the
parties hereto as follows :

(i) Shri Yashpal Kapoor, Shri Ashwani Kapoor and
Shri   Ashok   Kapoor   shall   continue   to   be   the   joint
owners of property situated at No.32, Golf Links, New
Delhi, absolutely.

(ii) Smt.   Ambika   Vij   had   been   given   jewellery   and
cash earlier during the life time of late Smt. Kailash
Kapoor and also  has been given jewellery and other
movable assets including  cash from the estate of late
Smt. Kailash Kapoor in full and  finally   settlement   of
her claim.

(iii) Shri Yashpal Kapoor would be the owner of all
the  remaining   properties   and   assets,   movable   and
immovable,   of   whatsoever   nature   including   Bank
accounts, Fixed Deposits, Unit   Trust,   Shares,   Life
Insurance     Policies,     Cash,       Bank   Lockers,   Loans
given to Companies and individuals etc. left behind by
late Smt. Kailash Kapoor.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF the parties hereto have set their
respective hands on the day and the year first above written.

Witnesses
1. Not legible sd/­
              Shri Yashpal Kapoor (First Party)

2. Not legible      sd/­
            Ajay Kapoor (Second Party)

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Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.10 of 13
sd/­
    Anjali Sarin (Third Party)

sd/­
        Ashwani Kapoor (Forth Party)

sd/­
             Ashok Kapoor (Fifth Party)

  sd/­
                   Smt. Ambika Vij (Sixth Party)”

(Emphasis Mine)

12. From   the   perusal   of   the   abovesaid   memorandum   of
family settlement, the factum of his adoption came to the knowledge
of late Sh. Ajay Kapoor at least on 15.11.1992. He did not challenge
his adoption during his life time. There is no dispute regarding the
legal   proposition   that   presumption   under   Section   16   of   the   Hindu
Adoptions   and   Maintenance   Act,   1956   as   to   registered   documents
relating to adoption is rebuttable on the basis of evidence. In para 17
of   the   plaint   which   relates   to   cause   of   action,   it   has   not   been
specifically   mentioned   as   to   when   the   plaintiffs   or   late   Sh.   Ajay
Kapoor came to know that no actual adoption had taken place of late
Sh. Ajay Kapoor by Smt. and Sh. Bishamber Das. It is a case of clever
drafting of the plaint. When late Sh. Ajay Kapoor came to know of the
adoption at least on 15.11.1992, he did not take any action to get the
same annulled by filing a suit. Thus, challenging the adoption deed
dated   13.02.1960   in   the   present   suit   is   hopelessly   barred   by   time.
Therefore, no relief as prayed for in prayer clause ­ (d) of the suit can
CS No.57731/2016
Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.11 of 13
be granted to the plaintiffs. 

13. It   is   the   settled   law   that   once   a   person   is   given   in
adoption, he loses his right over the properties of his natural parents.
When the suit challenging the adoption of late Sh. Ajay Kapoor is
barred by limitation, he has no right, title or interest in the properties
left by his natural parents. Thus, the plaintiffs have no locus standi to
file the present suit as the plaintiffs are claiming through deceased Sh.
Ajay   Kapoor   who   himself   had   no   right,   title   or   interest   over   any
portion of the suit property as he was given in adoption by the owner
of the suit property to his adoptive parents way back in the year 1960.
The plaintiffs, therefore, have no right to challenge the judgment and
decree dated 13.12.2002 passed in suit no.2187/1993 or for restraining
defendant no.5 from mutating the suit property in any name(s) on the
basis   of   the   award   dated   28.10.2002/judgment   and   decree   dated
13.12.2002   passed   in   suit   no.2187/1993   or   for   any   permanent
injunction   with   respect   to   the   suit   property.   The   plaintiffs   are,
therefore, held not entitled to any of the reliefs as claimed in prayer
clauses (a) to (f) of the plaint. The suit of the plaintiffs is, therefore,
held to be barred by limitation qua challenging the adoption deed. It
is,   therefore,   held   that   the   plaintiffs   have   no   cause   of   action   for
claiming reliefs (a), (b), (c), (e) and (f) of the prayer clauses of the
plaint. 

14. Considering the facts and circumstances of the case, the
preliminary issue is decided against the plaintiffs and in favour of the

CS No.57731/2016
Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.12 of 13
defendants.   The   suit   of   the   plaintiffs   is,   therefore,   dismissed   with
costs. Since the present suit is an abuse of the process of law, the
same is dismissed with further cost of Rs.1,00,000/­, and such costs
shall   be   deposited   by   the   plaintiffs   with   the   website
www.bharatkeveer.gov.in within a month from today. In case the cost
is not deposited by the plaintiffs within the said period and the receipt
for the same is not filed in this court, Reader/Ahlmad is directed to
place the file before this court for proceeding against the plaintiffs in
accordance with law. Decree sheet be prepared accordingly. File be
consigned to Record Room after due compliance. 

  PRAVEEN
Digitally signed
by PRAVEEN
KUMAR
KUMAR Date: 2018.10.16
04:48:04 +0530

Dictated and announced in  (PRAVEEN KUMAR)

open court today i.e. on 12.10.2018.       Additional District Judge­05, 
                     NDD,Patiala House Courts,
     New Delhi. (R)

CS No.57731/2016
Anuradha Kapoor  Ors. Vs. Ashok Kapoor  Ors.                                     Page No.13 of 13

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