Civil Appeals

Provisions under which First Appeals are preferred:

Against decree, as defined under Section 2(2), regular First Appeal is provided under Section 96,C.P.C. Normally suit concludes by pronouncement of (final) judgment under Order 20 Rule 1. (Such judgment in view of its definition given under Section 2(10) means the statement given by the Judge on the grounds of the decree.)

Thereafter, by virtue of Order 20 Rules 6 and 7 the decree shall be drawn which shall agree and be in accordance with the judgment and shall be signed by the judge on being satisfied about its correctness as such. The decree shall bear date, the day on which the judgment was pronounced (even though its preparation and drawing up may take some time, within 15 days as per Order 20 Rule 6-A). The main ingredient of the decree is operative portion of the judgment. According to Order 20 Rule 6 decree shall contain particulars of the claim and shall specify clearly the relief granted or other determination of the suit. Amount of costs are also to be stated therein. (Rules 6, 6-A and 7 of order 20 quoted at the end).

Section 2(2), 2(9) and Section 96 C.P.C. are quoted below:

“2 (2) Decree” means the formal expression of an adjudication which, so far as regards the Court expressing it, conclusively determines the rights of the parties with regard to all or any of the matters in controversy in the suit and may be either preliminary or final. It shall be deemed to include the rejection of a plaint and the determination of any question within section 144, but shall not include) any adjudication from which an appeal
lies as an appeal from an order, or (b) any order of dismissal for default."

"2 (9) Judgment” means the statement given by the Judge on the grounds of a decree or order.”
96. Appeal from original decree. – (1) Save where otherwise expressly provided in the body of this Code or by any other law for the time being in force, an appeal shall lie from every decree passed by any Court exercising original jurisdiction to the Court authorized to hear appeals from the decisions of such Court.

(2) An appeal may lie from an original decree passed ex parte.

(3) No appeal shall lie from a decree passed by the Court with the consent of parties.

(4) No appeal shall lie, except on a question of law, from a decree in any suit of the nature cognizable by Court of Small Causes, when the amount or value of the subject-matter of the original suit does not exceed (ten) thousand rupees.”

Appeal, statutory right, can be made conditional by Statute:

In Ganga Bai v. Vijay Kumar, AIR 1974 SC 1126 it has been held that suit is inherent, general or common law right and it need not be provided by any statute, however, appeal is a statutory right and is maintainable only when some statute provides the remedy of appeal. Following this authority it has been held in Gujarat Agro Industry v. Municipal Corporation Ahmadabad AIR 1999 SC 1818 that statute providing right of appeal can
make the right conditional like deposit of tax or its part in case of appeal against assessment/imposition of tax.

Right of appeal under Section 96 C.P.C. is not conditional. Accordingly admission of such appeal cannot be conditional e.g. it cannot be ordered along with admission of appeal that in case certain amount is not deposited within certain time order of admission of appeal shall stand withdrawn or recalled vide Management of M/s Devi Theatre v.Vishwanath Raju AIR 2004SC332 and G.L. Vijain v.K. Shankar AIR 2007 SC 1103 (Such condition may be attached with stay order.)

Appeal against Preliminary and Final Decrees:

In certain suits, two decrees are passed, one is preliminary and the other is final, like partition suit, in which, in the preliminary decree shares of the parties are determined and in final decree actual partition is done by metes and bounds. Appeal is provided against both the decrees i.e. preliminary as well as final. However, if against the preliminary decree appeal is not filed then its correctness cannot be questioned in an appeal which is preferred against final decree as provided under Section 97 C.P.C.

Appeal not to be allowed on trivial defects in decree:

Section 99 CPC is quoted below:

“99.No decree to be reversed or modified for error or irregularity not affecting merits or jurisdiction.No decree shall be reversed or substantially varied,nor shall any case be remanded, in appeal on account of any misjoinder or non-joinder of parties or causes of action or any error, defect or irregularity in any proceedings in the suit, not affecting the merits of the case or the jurisdiction of the Court:

Provided that nothing in this section shall apply to non- joinder of a necessary party It has been held in Kuldip Kumar Dubey v.Ramesh Chandra Goyal AIR 2015 SC 1135 that in appeal decree cannot be set aside on the ground of minor discrepancies in it, in view of section 99 CPC.

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