Appeal by a stranger under section 96 of Civil Procedure Code

Sri V.H. Krishna Murthy & Anr
Sri Ravikumar & Ors
Decided on: 21/8/2020
Court: Supreme Court
Citation: SLP No 6952-6955 of 2020

Issue: Can a stranger file an appeal if he is not an aggrieved part to the suit?
The court has been approached through an SLP under article 136 of the constitution,
thereby challenging the order of the high court, which declined the appellant leave to file
an appeal.

Brief facts:
Respondent 5 & 6, who are the Owners of the disputed land, executed a registered agreement
of sale in favour of the respondent society. Besides that they also executed a general power of
attorney in the favour of the office bearer of the society, thereby authorising them to enter into a
sale transaction on their behalf. Absolute rights were given to the power of attorney holder over
the sale of the property which was thereafter exercised by him.
An original suit was filed alleging that the plaintiff was the co-owner and the agreement could
not have been executed by the defendant society, without his concurrence, and also that it is
time barred.
It was also specified in the afore-mentioned suit, that the sale executed by the power of attorney
holder in favour of the present appellant was not questioned and no relief was claimed against
him. Thereafter the trail court after hearing both the parties passed a restraining order against the
In the meantime the present appellant filed an application under order 1 rule 10(2) of the CPC
for impleading him, which was dismissed. The said order was challenged in the high court
through a writ and the same was dismissed as infructuous.
Therefore aggrieved by the decision of the high court the present appellant approached the
supreme court under article 136 of the constitution, contending that the order passed by the trial
court, granting a decree of permanent injunction and also declaring the sale agreement as time
barred, has affected his interest.

After taking note of all the contentions of the appellant, the court was of the firm opinion that
section 96-100 of the cpc provides for filing an appeal, however it does not specify as to who
shall file the appeal. It went on to further observe that it is a settled rule that a stranger cannot
be permitted to file an appeal. If he wishes to do so, he needs to prove that he has been
aggrieved by the decree passed by the court. If it succeeds in doing so he can prefer an appeal
with leave of the appellate court.
In light of the prior judgements and the present circumstances of the case, the court held that as
there is nothing mentioned on the sale deed executed in favour of the appellant by the trial
court, it cannot be said that the appellant was adversely affected by the order. In addition the
appellant has also failed to demonstrate as to how the decree affects them so as to bring them
under the ambit of “aggrieved party”. The court finds no mistake in the decision of the High court
that dismissed the application, seeking leave to appeal.
The court observed that strangers cannot be permitted to file an appeal under section 96 of the
cpc, unless he satisfies the court that he falls within the ambit of an aggrieved party.

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