Delhi Judiciary Service Examination
DJS Mains 2014
Civil Law – I
Time: 3 Hours
Maximum Marks: 200
- All questions are compulsory.
- You are allowed 15 minutes reading time i.e., from 8.45 AM to 9.00 AM, before the examination begins, during which you should read the question paper if you wish, highlight and/or make notes on the question paper. However, you are not allowed, under any circumstances, to open the answer sheet and start writing during this reading time.
- You should answer Part-A and part-B Questions in separate answer sheets. If any question of Part-A is attempted in Part-B answer sheet or vice versa, it would not be evaluated.
- Support your answers with relevant provisions of law, legal principles and case law.
Question 1. ‘A’ (hereinafter, “the plaintiff), claiming himself to be the sole proprietor of the firm ‘A & Co.’ sued ‘X’ & Co., a registered firm (hereinafter ‘the defendant’) in January 2000, for recovery of a sum of Rupees fifty lakhs with interest pendente lite and future interest. The plaintiff claimed in the plaint that the firm ‘A & Co.’ had been dissolved by way of dissolution deed dated 01.01.1985, adduced in evidence as document ‘Exhibit P-3’ , whereby the asset of loan advanced to the defendant, with right of its recovery, had fallen to the share of the plaintiff ‘A’ now the sole proprietor of the firm ‘A & Co.’ The suit is contested by the defendants. At the trial, following facts are proved:
- ‘A & Co.’ was a partnership firm with two partners ‘A’ and ‘B’, constituted on 01.01.1980 through partnership deed, document ‘Exhibit P-1, and was engaged in the business of providing finance and consultancy for new business ventures.
- On 01.01.1990, ‘A & Co.’ had entered into an arrangement with the defendant through document ‘Exhibit P-2’ indicating that thereby financial support had been extended for its new hotel business in the sum of Rupees fifty lakh, repayable by sharing of monthly profits from the business in equal proportion with interest calculated at 12% per mensem, subject to the loan in entirely being liquidated within ten years, if necessary by selling off the other assets of the defendant.
- The document ‘Exhibit P-3 is proved to be a fabricated document prepared on a stamp paper which was issued in the year 1999.
- The firm ‘A & Co.’ was got registered in January 1991 by ‘A’ and ‘B’ on the basis of document ‘Exhibit P-1’ and was dissolved in December 1999, by way of dissolution deed dated 01.12.1999, adduced in evidence as document ‘Exhibit D-P, whereby the asset of loan advanced to the defendant, with right of its recovery, had fallen to the share of ‘A’ as the sole proprietor of the firm ‘A & Co.’.
- The document ‘Exhibit P-2’ shows that the words and expression ‘partner’ (to describe ‘A’, the signatory on behalf of ‘A & Co.’,) and ‘per annum’ originally typed out had been overwritten by ‘proprietor’ and ‘per mensem’ respectively, but the changes had not been authenticated by either side.
The defendant argues that:
- The suit cannot be maintained by ‘A’ as the loan was advanced by the firm which was not registered.
- The alterations in the document ‘Exhibit P-2’ were unauthorized and rendered the liability thereunder unenforceable.
- Since the plaintiff had relied on a fabricated document, he had not come with clean hands and so was not entitled to the discretion or relief.
The plaintiff seeks the suit to be decreed and argues that:
- The firm had been got registered subsequently.
- The alterations were corrections carried out with agreement of both sides.
- The claim was for enforcement of right to sue to realize the money of the dissolved firm and so could not be defeated.
Decide. (40 Marks)
Question 2. Chanda (hereinafter “the plaintiff or “the purchaser”) has filed suit Kamla (hereinafter “the defendant” or the seller”) for specific performance of agreement to sell her two-storied house (hereinafter “the suit property”). The defendant pleaded that the agreement stood annulled and the earnest money forfeited as the plaintiff had failed to perform her part of the agreement. The following facts stand proved at the trial:
- The agreement was executed on 26.08.2011 for sale of the suit property for total consideration of Rupees 10,00,000 (Ten lakh only), out of which Rupees 1,00,000 (One lakh only) was paid as earnest money at the time of agreement, on the following terms:
- Rupees 8,00,000 (Eight lakh only) shall be paid within a period often days only from the date of agreement and the balance at the time of registration of sale deed.
- The seller would get the first floor vacated by tenant and hand over the vacant possession of said portion with title deeds to the purchaser by 30.09.2011.
- The seller shall apply immediately for permission to sell from Income Tax authority and after obtaining such clearance execute the sale deed on or before 31.10.2011, handing over at that stage the vacant possession of the remainder of the suit property to the purchaser.
- Failure to execute and get registered the sale deed within the stipulated period on part of seller would confer on the purchaser right to get double the amount of earnest money as damages.
- Failure on the part of the purchaser to pay the balance sale consideration and get the sale deed executed and registered within the specified period would entail forfeiture of earnest money and the agreement being treated as null and void by the seller.
- The defendant got the first floor vacated by the tenant on 20.09.2011. The remainder of the suit property was already in her possession.
- On 10.09.2011, the plaintiff sent a notice stating that ready money was available for purchase of the property calling upon the defendant to complete the sale. The defendant sent a reply on 15.09.2011. taking the stand that since the amount of Rupees 8,00,000 (eight lakh only) was not paid within ten days of the agreement, the agreement stood annulled and earnest money forfeited. On 24.09.2011, the plaintiff sent response reminding the defendant of liability under the agreement to hand over vacant possession of the first floor by 30.09.2011 and calling upon her to comply well before or latest by said date and obtain the further part consideration of Rupees 8,00,000 (Eight lakh only) from the plaintiff. The plaintiff submits that suit for specific performance is bound to be decreed since in such agreements time is not of essence of the contract and compensation would not afford adequate relief.
The defendant prays for dismissal arguing that:
- The agreement is not specifically enforceable since it provided for liquidated damages.
- Time was of the essence of the contract and since payment was not tendered within the period specified in the agreement it had become null and void.
- The plaintiff was never ready and willing to perform her part of the Contract and so was not entitled to any relief.
Decide. (30 Marks)
Write Short notes on any three of the following: (30 Marks)
- Conditions and warranties in sale of goods.
- Time of passing of property in sale of goods.
- Compensation for breach of Contract.
- Contract in restraint of trade.
- Injunction is a discretionary relief.
Question 1. ‘L’ owns a house having three bedrooms (with attached bathrooms), a drawing cum dining room and a kitchen in which she resides with her husband ‘H’ and twenty two years old son (her only child) ‘S’. ‘L’ files an application under Section 21 of the Delhi Rent Control Act, 1958 seeking permission from the Rent Controller (RC) for letting out two bed rooms in her house to ‘T’ for his residence for a limited period of 2 years at a monthly rent of Rs. 3400 since she did not require them for the said period, as ‘S’ was going for higher studies to Pune. ‘T’ appears before the RC and makes a statement on oath and files an affidavit giving his consent for creation of limited tenancy. The RC grants ‘L’ permission for limited tenancy.
‘L’ dies before expiry of the period of tenancy. After expiry of the period of limited tenancy ‘H’ and ‘S’ as legal representatives of ‘L’ file an application under Section 21 of the Delhi Rent Control Act, 1958 for a direction to the RC to place them in vacant possession of the rented premises. ‘T’ contests the Application on the following grounds:
- ‘L’ had stated that she required after 2 years however she herself had accommodation which was sufficient for herself and her family so the permission obtained by her was vitiated by fraud;
- The stay of ‘S’ in Pune was admittedly extended for six months as he had to repeat a paper, showing that the present there was no necessity of the premises;
- Section 21 application of seeking permission for limited tenancy was not signed by ‘T’;
- Proposed agreement of tenancy writing submitted along with the application under Section 21 seeking permission to let out the premises was not a registered one and;
- After the death of ‘L’ there existed no cause of action.
Decide the application
In the above facts in case the tenancy was not a limited tenancy and the two rooms were let out to ‘T’ as office-cum-residence and ‘L’ in her life time had filed and eviction petition under Section 14(1)(e) of the Delhi Rent Control Act, 1958 on the ground that she has no other accommodation and the tenanted premises are required bona fide by her as one bed room is required for her son who is of marriageable age but nevertheless dependent on her financially and the other bedroom for guests who frequent her house. Can ‘L’ succeed in the face of ‘T’s contention that the accommodation available with ‘L’ was sufficient for her and her family and that the purpose of letting was not purely residential?
Decide in the light of rival contentions. (40 Marks)
Question 2. ‘W’ a workman in a factory was returning home on his bicycle in the night when he rode over a live wire because of which he was electrocuted to death. The widow of ‘W’ brought an action for damages against the State Electricity Board claiming that the Board could not escape from its liability to pay damages as this was a case of strict liability. It was contended by the State Electricity Board that one person ‘C’ had taken a wire from the main supply line in order to siphon the energy for his own use and the said act was done without notice of the Board and that the line got unfastened from the hook and fell on the road over which the deceased rode the bicycle, accordingly liability could not be fastened on the State Electricity Board as the reason for the unfortunate incident was “an act of stranger”.
Distinguish between absolute and strict liability. In the above case is the principle of strict liability applicable?
Decide. (30 Marks)
Question 3. Write Short notes on any three of the following: (30 Marks)
- Adoption by female Hindu.
- Distinction between void and irregular marriages under Muslim Law.
- Dower under Muslim Law.
- Desertion as a ground for divorce under the Hindy Marriage Act, 1955.
- Female Hindus Property Rights under Section 14 of the Hindu Succession Act, 1956