Introduction to the specific relief Act is a must before jumping into a range of topics provided. Having a legacy of distinction, earlier through the 1877 Act & then through the 1963 Act, the legislature endeavoured to grant the equitable justification & widen the justice imparting powers of the court.
This institution of justice is being approached by an aggrieved litigant for the purposes of getting relief. In the contractual relationship, where one person detracts from the promise earlier made, the other person deserves a remedy from the law. This is what the specific Relief Act tends to achieve.
From this codified legislation, flow some of the most common remedies that today in a court of law are found to be given in a variety of such cases of breaches. This shows how this act covers the remedial aspects of the law & comes into picture only when a legal right is violated, thus a branch of procedural law.
Contracts which cannot be specifically enforced
The contract to be specifically enforced must be mutual. The doctrine of mutuality means the contract must be mutually enforceable by each party against the other.
Section 14 of the Specific Relief Act, 1963 deals with cases where specific performance of a contract cannot be enforced.
Section 14 of Specific Relief Act: mentions certain contracts which cannot be specifically enforced which are as follows:
- When there is non performance of the act and money is adequate compensation.
- A contract that is full of many detail & its is nature is personal to the parties, these cannot be specifically enforced.
- The contract which requires continuous work for which court cannot supervise.
- The contract which is in its nature determinable.
Analyzing the provisions it could be seen that specific performance of a contract will not be allowed in the cases below
- A contract made by a trustee in excess of his power or breach of trust.
- When a person has become incapable of performing the contract that remains to be performed on his part.
- To a person in his favor who violates any essential term of the contract that remains to be performed on his part.
- To a person who acts in fraud of the contract.
- Who fails to prove that he has performed or has always been ready & willing to perform the essential terms of the contract which are to be performed by him.
- If A & B enter into a contract of building a house by A & if due to some reasons A is unable to perform the contract then B can execute the said contract by some other third party. eg. C, & all expenses should be barred by the non performer A & after which this contract cannot claim the Specific Relief under this Act.
- A & B entered into a contract which involves a condition that it may get terminated after sometime. So in a condition or non performance of the contract, none of the parties may enforce the duty of performance on the other party involved in a contract under this Act.
- Sanjana M. Wig V/S Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd. (Civil Appeal No.7337 of 2004)The appealant & one Smt. Bimla Devi J Obhan, who were partners in “M/s Tilak Automobiles” & the respondent entered into a dealership agreement. Admittedly the said agreement was terminated by the respondent by a notice dated 19-03-2004 in terms of clause 55 of the said agreement. Thus the court did not provide the petitioner with the relief as the agreement got terminated.
- State Bank of India & others V/S S.N.Goyal (AIR 2009 SCC 92)In this case it was held “that whether a direction by the civil court to reinstate the respondent amounted to granting specific performance of a contract of personal service which is barred by section 14 of the Specific Relief Act, 1963. The court rejected this petition & did not give relief under the said Act it does not fulfill the conditions of the Act.
Specific Relief Act, 1963 gives a right to the party involved in a contract & in which due to non performance of the contract, any of the parties may enforce the non performing party to perform their duty as many times compensation may not satisfy the other party which suffered damages due to non performance of the contract.
Section 14 of this act talks about the contracts which cannot be specifically enforced under the Specific Relief Act, 1963.
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