The appellants in Civil Appeal Nos. 2514-2516 of 2023 have appealed the decision of the High Court of Punjab and Haryana at Chandigarh in Review Application No. 149-C/2016 in RSA No. 596/2012 and XOBJC – 10C/2010. The original plaintiff sued for specific performance of a sale agreement, which the appellants, the original defendants, resisted. The trial court decreed the suit for recovery of double the earnest money paid, but refused to pass a decree for specific performance of the sale agreement. The High Court, however, overturned the trial court’s decision and granted the relief of specific performance, which the appellants appealed. The High Court then dismissed their review application. The appellants argue that the High Court erred in not considering the relevant clauses of the sale agreement and committed factual errors.

“An identical question came to be considered by this Court in the case of P. D’souza
(supra) and after considering the earlier decision of this Court in the case of M.L.
Devender Singh Vs. Syed Khaja (1973) SCC 515, this Court observed and held that
where the sum named is an amount the payment of which may be substituted for the
performance of the act at the election of the person by whom the money is to be paid or
the act done, the Court may refuse to pass the decree for specific performance. In the
present case, the condition specifically stipulates that in case of failure on the part of
the seller to execute the sale deed within the stipulated time the buyer shall be entitled to
double the amount given as an advance.
Therefore, the sum is specifically named i.e., double the amount of advance paid. Though,
the High Court has relied upon the decision in the case of P. D’souza (supra), the
aforesaid aspect has not been considered by the High Court, more particularly, the
observations made in paragraph 31 in its true perspective.

In view of the above, the High Court has materially erred in setting aside the
concurrent judgment(s) of the learned Trial Court as well as the First Appellate Court
refusing to pass the decree for specific performance and passing the decree for
recovery of Rs. 4 lakhs being double the amount of advance paid. Under the
circumstances, the impugned judgment and order passed by the High Court is
unsustainable.

T.D. Vivek Kumar & Anr. ..Appellant(s)
Versus
Ranbir Chaudhary …Respondent(s)
decided by the Supreme Court on 28.04.23

By aor.sanjivnarang@gmail.com

Sanjiv Narang Adv. is an Advocate on Record in the Supreme Court of India. His qualifications include an LLB from University of Delhi and a Masters degree in Personnel Management from Panjab University,Chandigarh.In his more than 3 decades of experience, he has practiced law at the District, High Court and Supreme Court levels.He also has more than a decade of experience in the field of Management. He is the author of two books namely Laws for Women in India and Innovation, Why What and How.