Op EdsOP. ED.

   

On intention to claim adverse possession, Powell v. Macfarlane1 is quite illustrative and categorical, holding in the following terms: If the law is to attribute possession of land to a person, who can establish no paper title to possession, he must be shown to have both factual possession and the requisite intention to possess (“animus possidendi”).

The three-Judge Bench of the Supreme Court in Ravinder Kaur Grewal v. Manjit Kaur2 has finally removed an anomalous position on adverse possession that “at the end of 12 years the adverse possessor has perfect right to possession of the property to the exclusion of owner but has no title to the property while the owner lost his right to possession but continues to have the title to the property”.

The Bench of Arun Mishra, S. Abdul Nazeer and M.R. Shah, JJ. pointed out that historical development of adverse possession requires that adverse possessor had to establish “the essential requirements of adverse possession, namely, nec vi i.e. adequate in continuity, nec clam i.e. adequate in publicity and nec precario i.e. adverse to a competitor, in denial of title and his knowledge shall co-exist at the same time.3 Visible, notorious and peaceful so that if the owner does not take care to know notorious facts, knowledge is attributed to him on the basis that but for due diligence he would have known it”.4

Another principle was that “Adverse possession cannot be decreed on a title which is not pleaded. Animus possidendi under hostile colour of title is required.”

The author wishes to begin this essay with the three-Judge Bench decision in Sarangadevar Periya Matam v. Ramaswami Gounder.5

In Sarangadeva Periya Matam6 on death of the plaintiff-respondent, his legal representative pursued the appeal “claiming title to the lands by prescriptive right on adverse possession on reason that the plaintiff, since 1915, and his predecessors-in-interest were in adverse possession of the lands”, and “on the expiry of 12 years in 1927 he acquired prescriptive title to the lands under Section 28 7 read with Article 1448 of the Limitation Act, 1908”.

Accepting his arguments on the above first contention,9 the Bench of Bachawat, R.S. Subba Rao, K. and Mudholkar, J.R., JJ. after an exhaustive review of earlier decisions, held that:

10. … by the operation of Article 144 read with Section 28 of the Limitation Act, 1908 the title of the math to the suit lands became extinguished in 1927, and the plaintiff acquired title to the lands by prescription. He continued in possession of the land until January 1950. It has been found that in January 1950 he voluntarily delivered possession of the lands to the math, but such delivery of possession did not transfer any title to the math.10

On the next issue, the Supreme Court held that “the suit was instituted in 1954 and is well within time”11 when it was found by Their Lordships that:

7. … the present mathadhipathi was elected in 1939 when the title of the math to the suit lands was already extinguished by adverse possession. By his election in 1939 the present mathadhipathi could not acquire the right to possess and enjoy or to recover properties which no longer belonged to the math.12

The appeal was dismissed.

In Des Raj v. Bhagat Ram13, the plaintiff-respondents filed the suit “for declaration of title and for a permanent injunction based on adverse possession against defendants-appellants”. After observing that “the factual aspects of the matter which are neither denied nor disputed,” the Bench of S.B. Sinha and Markandey Katju. JJ. declared that ”the plaintiff-respondent had remained in possession for a long time i.e. since 1953 and that in his plaint, the plaintiff did not specifically plead ouster but mofussil pleadings, as is well known, must be construed liberally, and be construed as a whole”14 on quoting Devasahayam v. P. Savithramma,15 declared that:

19. Only because the parties did not use the terminology which they should have, ipso facto, would not mean that the ingredients for satisfying the requirements of statute are absent. There cannot be any doubt whatsoever that having regard to the changes brought about by Articles 64 and 65 of the Limitation Act, 196316 vis-à-vis Articles 14217 and 144 of the Limitation Act, 1908, the onus to prove adverse possession would be on the person who raises such a plea. It is also furthermore not in dispute that the possession of a co-sharer is presumed to be possession of the other co-sharers unless the contrary is proved.

20. A plea of adverse possession or a plea of ouster would indisputably be governed by Articles 64 and 65 of the Limitation Act, 1963.

The Bench of S.B. Sinha and Markandey Katju, JJ. also declared that:

22. The mere assertion of title by itself may not be sufficient unless the plaintiff proves animus possidendi. But the intention on the part of the plaintiff to possess the properties in the suit exclusively and not for and on behalf of other co-owners also is evident from the fact that the defendant-appellants themselves had earlier filed two suits. Such suits were filed for partition. In those suits the defendant-appellants claimed themselves to be co-owners of the plaintiff. The claim of hostile title by the plaintiff over the suit land, therefore, was, thus, known to the appellants since both suits were dismissed in the year 1977…. It may be true, as has been contended on behalf of the appellants before the courts below, that a co-owner can bring about successive suits for partition as the cause of action, therefore, would be a continuous one. But it is equally well settled that the pendency of a suit does not stop the running of “limitation”. The very fact that the defendants despite the purported entry made in the revenue settlement record-of-rights in the year 1953 allowed the plaintiff to possess the same exclusively and had not succeeded in their attempt to possess the properties in Village Samleu and/or otherwise enjoy the usufruct thereof, clearly goes to show that even prior to institution of the said suit the plaintiff-respondent had been in hostile possession thereof.18

The Court observed that:

“Article 65 of the Limitation Act, 1963, therefore, would in a case of this nature have its role to play, if not from 1953, but at least from 1968 when the plaintiff made his hostile declaration claiming title for the property at least in his written statement in the suit filed in the year 1968. Thus, at least from 1968 onwards, the plaintiff continued to exclusively possess the suit land with the knowledge of the defendants- appellants.”19

Dismissing the appeal, the Bench of S.B. Sinha and Markandey Katju, JJ. held that:

“…having regard to the peculiar facts obtaining in the case, we are of the opinion that the plaintiff-respondent had established that he acquired title by ousting the defendant-appellants by declaring hostile title in himself which was to the knowledge of his co-sharers.”20

In Ravinder Kaur21, the Bench of Arun Mishra, S. Abdul Nazeer and M.R. Shah, JJ. clearly held that:

62….a person in possession cannot be ousted by another person except by due procedure of law and once 12 years' period of adverse possession is over, even owner's right to eject him is lost and the possessory owner acquires right, title and interest possessed by the outgoing person/owner, as the case may be, against whom he has prescribed. In our opinion, the consequence is that once the right, title or interest is acquired it can be used as a sword by the plaintiff as well as a shield by the defendant within ken of Article 65 of the Act and any person who has perfected title by way of adverse possession, can file a suit for restoration of possession in case of dispossession. In case of dispossession by another person by taking law in his hand a possessory suit can be maintained under Article 64, even before the ripening of title by way of adverse possession. By perfection of title on extinguishment of the owner's title, a person cannot be remediless. In case he has been dispossessed by the owner after having lost the right by adverse possession, he can be evicted by the plaintiff by taking the plea of adverse possession. Similarly, under other articles also in case of infringement of any of his rights, a plaintiff who has perfected the title by adverse possession, can sue and maintain a suit.

(emphasis supplied)

Then coming to another dimension on “claim of adverse possession over public lands”, the Court declared that:

63. When we consider the law of adverse possession as has developed vis-à-vis to property dedicated to public use, courts have been loath to confer the right by adverse possession. There are instances when such properties are encroached upon and then a plea of adverse possession is raised. In such cases, on the land reserved for public utility, it is desirable that rights should not accrue. The law of adverse possession may cause harsh consequences; hence, we are constrained to observe that it would be advisable that concerning such properties dedicated to public cause, it is made clear in the statute of limitation that no rights can accrue by adverse possession.22

The “concomitant effect of adverse possession” was also explained when the Court observed:

“Adverse possession is heritable and there can be tacking of adverse possession by two or more persons as the right is transmissible one. In our opinion, it confers a perfected right which cannot be defeated on reentry except as provided in Article 65 itself.”23

The Bench of Arun Mishra, S. Abdul Nazeer and M.R. Shah, JJ. declared that “plea of acquisition of title by adverse possession can be taken by plaintiff under Article 65 of the Limitation Act and there is no bar under the Limitation Act, 1963 to sue on aforesaid basis in case of infringement of any rights of a plaintiff” overruling Gurdwara Sahib v. Gram Panchayat Village Sirthala,24 State of Uttarakhand v. Mandir Sri Laxman Sidh Maharaj25 and Dharampal v. Punjab Wakf Board26 as not correct.

Comments of the author

On careful reading of Ravindra Kaur Grewal27, the following principles can be noted:

  1. The cardinal principle of law of property was that possession, let us say, legally acquired by any person i.e. the owner or lessee, etc. cannot be forcibly taken away by others except under the authority of law as it is popularly known that “possession is nine points in law”.

    In the above circumstances, a suit for possession under Section 6 of the Specific Relief Act, 196328 can be brought against the trespasser29 or appropriate orders can be passed protecting possession of a person under Section 145 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 197330 when there is any dispute over immovable properties.

  2. Even before the end of 12 years or more, the adverse possessor can protect his adverse possession against any other person except the owner of the property.

  3. After completion of 12 years or more, the erstwhile owner's right, title and interest in the property passes on to the adverse possessor, his right to possession shall not be disturbed even by owner. Therefore, adverse possession as “as sword” can be used his adverse possession on strength of Article 65 of the Limitation Act, 196331 to claim the decree for title to the property on completion of 12 years.32

  4. On extinguishment of the owner's title, the adverse possessor can even evict the owner on being dispossessed by him since he cannot be remediless. As corollary, adverse possession can be used “as shield” under Article 64 of the Limitation Act, 196333 to ward off any interference to possession even by the true owner.

  5. An adverse possessor completely silent on being ousted from possession by subsequent adverse possessor, the latter has identical rights as explained above, against everyone, including the owner at the end of 12 years.

  6. The subsequent adverse possessor in the above circumstances, cannot tack on the earlier period of adverse possession already completed by the former to his advantage, but shall hold adverse possession afresh for period of 12 years in view of observation of the Full Bench that “two distinct trespassers cannot tack their possession to constitute conferral of right by adverse possession for the prescribed period.”

  7. Another principle given on tacking by the Full Bench, on the other hand, was that “tacking is based on the fulfilment of certain conditions, tacking maybe by possession by the purchaser, legatee or assignee, etc. so as to constitute continuity of possession, that person must be claiming through whom it is sought to be tacked, and would depend on the identity of the same property under the same right,”34 the legal heirs of adverse possessor can tack the earlier period to their advantage to complete 12 years.

For instance, an adverse possessor claiming through his immediate predecessor, say one of the parents, can tack the earlier possession advantageously to claim the benefit of the Full Bench decision.

On strength of the observations in State of Haryana v. Mukesh Kumar35 and Hemaji Waghaji Jat v. Bhikhabhai Khengarbhai Harijan,36 the author firmly believes that “when adverse possession itself is simply trespassing into property of others, it is not justifiable to allow tacking in above circumstances thereby aggravating the difficulties of true owner”.

The Bench of Dalveer Bhandari and Deepak Verma, JJ. in Mukesh Kumar37 observed that “Adverse possession allows a trespasser — a person guilty of a tort, or even a crime, in the eye of the law — to gain legal title to land which he has illegally possessed for 12 years. How 12 years of illegality can suddenly be converted to legal title is, logically and morally speaking, baffling” asking the Government of India to either abolish or bring suitable amendments to law of adverse possession.

Identical observations can be found in another Bench of Dalveer Bhandari and Harjit Singh Bedi, JJ. who also wrote to the Government of India to introduce suitable changes.38

Despite the above observations on principle of adverse possession, Ravinder Kaur39 found it as a necessary, inevitable principle when the owner did not care to protect his property.


* Professor of Law, Hyderabad. Author can be reached at <csraghuraman1954@gmail.com>.

1. (1977) 38 P & CR 452.

2. (2019) 8 SCC 729.

3. In S.M. Karim v. Bibi Sakina, AIR 1964 SC 1254, para 5, Hidayatullah, J. observed thus: “Adverse possession must be adequate in continuity, in publicity and extent and a plea is required at the least to show when possession becomes adverse so that the starting point of limitation against the party affected can be found.”

4. Ravinder Kaur Grewal v. Manjit Kaur, (2019) 8 SCC 729, para 60.

5. AIR 1966 SC 1603.

6. AIR 1966 SC 1603, para 2.

7. Limitation Act, 1908, S. 28.

8. Limitation Act, 1908, Art. 144.

9. Sarangadevar Periya Matam v. Ramaswami Gounder, AIR 1966 SC 1603, para 2. Their Lordships did not think it necessary to decide the next submissions viz. (2) by the resumption proceedings and the grant of the ryotwari patta a new tenure was created in his favour and he acquired full ownership in the lands; and (3) in any event, he was in adverse possession of the lands since 1928, and on the expiry of 12 years in 1940 he acquired prescriptive title to the lands under S. 28 read with Art. 134-B of the Limitation Act, 1908.

10. Sarangadevar Periya Matam v. Ramaswami Gounder, AIR 1966 SC 1603.

11. Did the limitation commence on the date of the death of the previous mathadhipathi, or did it commence on the data of election of the present mathadhipathi?

12. Sarangadevar Periya Matam v. Ramaswami Gounder, AIR 1966 SC 1603.

13. (2007) 9 SCC 641.

14. Des Raj v. Bhagat Ram, (2007) 9 SCC 641, paras 16 and 17.

15. (2005) 7 SCC 653, 661, para 20 held: “The pleadings as are well known must be construed reasonably. The contention of the parties in their pleadings must be culled out from reading the same as a whole. Different considerations on construction of pleadings may arise between pleadings in the mofussil court and pleadings in the Original Side of the High Court.”

16. Limitation Act, 1963, Arts. 64 and 65.

17. Limitation Act, 1908, Art. 142.

18. Des Raj v. Bhagat Ram, (2007) 9 SCC 641, 648.

19. Des Raj v. Bhagat Ram, (2007) 9 SCC 641, paras 24 and 26. The Bench referred in Govindammal v. R. Perumal Chettiar, (2006) 11 SCC 600, 607-608, para 8 wherein it was held that: “In order to oust by way of adverse possession, one has to lead definite evidence to show that to the hostile interest of the party that a person is holding possession and how that can be proved will depend on facts of each case.”

20. Des Raj v. Bhagat Ram, (2007) 9 SCC 641, 650, para 31.

21. (2019) 8 SCC 729, 777-778.

22. Ravinder Kaur Grewal v. Manjit Kaur, (2019) 8 SCC 729, 778.

23. Ravinder Kaur Grewal v. Manjit Kaur, (2019) 8 SCC 729, para 61.

24. (2014) 1 SCC 669.

25. (2017) 9 SCC 579.

26. (2018) 11 SCC 449.

27. (2019) 8 SCC 729.

28. Specific Relief Act, S. 6 — “Suit by person dispossessed of immovable properties”.

29. The suit can be brought within 6 months of dispossession, need not be on title.

30. Criminal Procedure Code, 1973, S. 145 —“Procedure where dispute concerning land or water likely to cause breach of peace.”

31. Limitation Act, 1963, Art. 65 — “For possession of any immovable property or an interest thereon based on title.”

32. Interestingly Art. 65 gives 12 years to retrieve his possession while adverse possessor shall wait for 12 years to assert his “possession as well title” to the property.

33. “For possession of immovable property based on previous possession and not on title, when the plaintiff while in possession of the property has been dispossessed.”

34. Ravinder Kaur Grewal v. Manjit Kaur, (2019) 8 SCC 729, para 61.

35. (2011) 10 SCC 404, the attempts of State, through Police Department, to claim declaration of title to the respondents-defendant's land through adverse possession was not allowed. Mukesh Kumar to be taken as impliedly overruled by the Full Bench.

36. (2009) 16 SCC 517. There seems to be no necessity to think of overruling of this ruling, since the Supreme Court rejected the claim of adverse possession on reasons that “when pleading, issues framed in trial court were silent on adverse possession, both appellate courts also observed failure to prove and establish adverse possession”.

37. (2011) 10 SCC 404, para 44.

38. Of course, both were decisions of Division Benches.

39. (2019) 8 SCC 729.

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Delhi High Court: Asha Menon, J., held that,

“Mere fact that the boundary walls had been built by the defendants cannot be termed as a hostile act against the true owner as the walls had been constructed to define the properties of the defendants after the family partition took place.”

The plaintiffs had filed the suit seeking recovery of possession, mesne profits, the permanent and mandatory injunction against the defendants, their agents, servants or any other person claiming through them in respect of property situated in the revenue estate. The property was bounded by 20 feet high brick walls on all sides.

It was stated to have built up portion comprising of two halls, three rooms, two separate bathrooms, two separate kitchens, a temple and a garden and a covered parking space (suit property).

The defendants were the relatives of the plaintiffs. It was claimed that the suit property had come into the share of Sudhir Kumar Tyagi on the basis of a partition which took place vide a decree passed by the Revenue Assistant in a suit being preferred under Section 55 of the Delhi Land Reforms Act, 1954.

Plaintiffs had asked the defendants to vacate the suit property, but the defendants refused to vacate the same. Further, the plaintiff claimed that despite the occupation of the suit property by defendants, Sudhir Kumar Tyagi had retained in his possession an office latrine, kitchen and a storage room near the northern side of the suit property towards the MCD Primary School which he used for his personal purposes, and which was placed under his lock and key and contained his old business records.

The covered parking area was also being used by the plaintiffs and their visitors. However, by the end of 2017, the relationship again deteriorated. Thereafter, Sudhir Kumar Tyagi expired on 24-05-2018.

It was averred that the plaintiffs taking hold of the situation, in 2019 made a joint request to the defendants to vacate the suit property but they requested for more time as their own residence was under renovation. A promise was made by the defendants that they would vacate the suit property by February or March, 2020 but till date they had failed to do so taking advantage of the Covid-19 pandemic situation.

In view of the above circumstances, the present matter approached the Court.

Analysis, Law and Decision

Identity of Property

The High Court noted that there does not appear to be any doubt as to the identity of the property in respect of which the plaintiffs have claimed possession from the defendants and in respect of which the defendants have asserted title by adverse possession.

Court stated that in view of the circumstances of the present case, raising of a doubt on the number of the suit property was insufficient to deny consideration of the application under Order XII Rule 6 CPC.

There was another aspect that needs to be noted before proceeding further and that is with regard to the admission that the electricity and water meters still stand in the name of the predecessor-in-interest of the plaintiffs. The Bench expressed that the defendants had not been able to file on record any electricity bill that was raised in their names at the suit property for running their Sports Complex.

Law | Order XII Rule 6 CPC

While considering an application under Order XII Rule 6 CPC, the law is that the powers are discretionary and further, that for the Court to exercise its powers under the said provisions, admissions should be clear, unambiguous and unequivocal.

In the decision of this Court in Rajeev Tandon v. Rashmi Tandon, 2019 SCC OnLine Del 7336, Court had considered the pleas of the defendant raised in that case to find out whether it disclosed any meaningful defence or not. The absence of material particulars in the pleadings and presence of unsubstantiated pleas and vague averments were found sufficient to hold that there are admissions in the pleadings to pass a decree under Order XII Rule 6.

While disposing of an application under Order XII Rule 6 CPC, the Court was fully justified in considering the averments in the written statement to see whether essential facts had been pleaded or whether defence was a complete moonshine, requiring the Court to not send the case for trial.

In the present matter, the defendants had accepted the fact that this suit property had fallen in the share of late Sudhir Kumar Tyagi, the plaintiffs’ predecessor-in-interest, on the partition of the suit property and he had been its owner since then.

In view of the fact that the parties were on good terms, as per the averments in the written statement, late Sudhir Kumar Tyagi had permitted the defendant 1 to use the plot. Thus, the possession had not been a result of wrongful dispossession of the rightful owner, when the defendant 1 came into the premises.

“…long possession will not affect the title of the true owner. Nor would the lack of use of the property by the owner, for a long time, affect his title.”

Bench added that it was only when the defendants start asserting hostile title that the clock will start ticking. Strangely, in the entire written statement, the defendants did not state any definitiveness as to dates since when they had started asserting their hostile title.

Adding to the above, High Court stated that defendant 1 did not assert independent and hostile title to late Sudhir Kumar Tyagi.

Further, defendants had to specifically plead with sufficient clarity when the possession became adverse and the exact date when adverse possession commenced and whether this fact was let known to the real owner.

“…a fundamental plea to submit the claim of adverse possession is missing and the burden on the defendants has not been discharged.”

Thus, it was the defendant who had to plead and only when pleadings exist could he prove the three classic requirements of “nec vi, nec clam, nec precario”. The non-disclosure of the starting point of limitation against the plaintiffs being not pleaded clearly, the defence of adverse possession is “total moonshine”.

The application under Order XII Rule 6 CPC was allowed. [Monika Tyagi v. Subhash Tyagi, 2021 SCC OnLine Del 5400, decided on 17-12-2021]


Advocates before the Court:

Mr Ravi Gupta, Senior Advocate with Mr Vidit Gupta, Mr Sachin Jain and Mr Himansh Yadav Advocates

Mr Rajat Aneja and Ms Rajula, Advocates

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Orissa High Court: D. Dash J. dismissed the second appeal being devoid of merits.

The Appellant filed the instant appeal under Section 100 of Code of Civil Procedure (for short, ‘the Code’) assailing judgment and decree dated 19-10-2019 and 06-11-2019 respectively passed by the IInd Additional District Judge, Balasore. Taking up the crucial issues as to the right, title, interest of the Plaintiff as claimed to have been acquired by way of adverse possession; the legality of the M.S. record of right in respect of the suit land and the nature of the land; the decisions have been rendered against the Plaintiff. The Plaintiff having been non-suited had approached the lower Appellate Court in filing the First Appeal under section 96 of the Code which came to be dismissed. The lower Appellate Court has affirmed the findings by assigning the reasons of its own and upon appreciation of the evidence on record at its level. Hence, this appeal.

Counsel for the appellant (plaintiff) submitted that the Courts below did commit the error by not considering the Yadast report as also the note of possession in respect of the suit land in favour of the Plaintiff in Major Settlement Record. He also submitted that when the very possession of the suit land by the Plaintiff on the strength of Hata Patta stands adverse to the true owner and said state of affair having continued for upward of the prescribed in law, the Plaintiff ought to have been held to have perfected his title over the suit land by adverse possession.

The court observed that the classical requirements of adverse possession are: nec vi, nec calm, nec precario. The possession must be adequate in continuity, in publicity and in extent to show that it was adverse to the true owner as that of a competitor to the title of the true owner. Adverse possession is a right which comes into play not just because someone loses his right to reclaim the property out of continuous and willful neglect but also on account of possessor’s positive intent to dispossess-one.. In the case at hand, fine in the Encroachment Proceeding having been paid by the Plaintiff, the same is clearly an act of recognition of the title of the State and thus the question of denial of the title as up till that time does never arise.

The Court further observed that the process of acquisition of title by adverse possession springs into action essentially by default or inaction of the owner. A person even though is having no right over the property entered into possession of the property of someone else and continues to be in possession setting up title in himself and adversely to the title of the true owner they only a case of acquisition of title by adverse possession can sustain, provided it is for the required length period and the nature of possession is open, peaceful and without interruption and as such established by leading clear, cogent and acceptable

evidence. The action of the Plaintiff in paying the fine in the Encroachment Proceeding of the year 1993 is nothing but an expression in clear term as to lack of hostile animus in possessing the same.

The Court thus held “The facts and circumstances emanating from the evidence on record being tested in the touch stone of the above settled principles of law, the end result of the suit receiving seal of approval in the First Appeal, are found to be well in order.”

[Sri Raj Kishore Panda v. State of Odisha, RSA No.57 of 2020, decided on 26-03-2021]


Arunima Bose, Editorial Assistant has reported this brief.


Appearances:

For appellants- Mr. S.P. Mishra, Ms. S. Mishra, G.N. Parida, A. Agarwal, B. Jena, S. Swaroop, N. Sharma, M. Mohanty and E. Agarwal,

For the respondent- None

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: The 3-judge bench of Arun Mishra, SA Nazeer and MR Shah, JJ has held that the Article 65 of Limitation Act, 1963 not only enables a person to set up a plea of adverse possession as a shield as a defendant but also allows a plaintiff to use it as a sword to protect the possession of immovable property or to recover it in case of dispossession.

The Court held that a person in possession cannot be ousted by another person except by due procedure of law and once 12 years’ period of adverse possession is over, even owner’s right to eject him is lost and the possessory owner acquires right, title and interest possessed by the outgoing person/owner as the case may be against whom he has prescribed. By perfection of title on extinguishment of the owner’s title, a person cannot be remediless.

“In case he has been dispossessed by the owner after having lost the right by adverse possession, he can be evicted by the plaintiff by taking the plea of adverse possession. Similarly, any other person who might have dispossessed the plaintiff having perfected title by way of adverse possession can also be evicted until and unless such other person has perfected title against such a plaintiff by adverse possession.”

Rejecting the contention that there is no conferral of right by adverse possession, the Court held that there is the acquisition of title in favour of plaintiff though it is negative conferral of right on extinguishment of the right of an owner of the property. The right ripened by prescription by his   adverse possession is absolute and on dispossession, he can sue based on ‘title’ as envisaged in the opening part under Article 65 of Act. The Court, hence, held that

“the plea of acquisition of title by adverse possession can be taken by plaintiff under Article 65 of the Limitation Act and there is no bar under the Limitation Act, 1963 to sue on aforesaid basis in case of infringement of any rights of a plaintiff.”

[Ravinder Kaur Grewal v. Manjit Kaur, 2019 SCC OnLine SC 975, decided on 07.08.2019]