P Seetharamayya vs G Mahalaxmamma case law is a typical case of damnum sine injuria meaning damages (loss) without any legal injury.
- The parties to the appeals are owners of adjacent lands. The appellants own S. Nos. 86 and 87/2, which have been shown in Ex. A-4, the plan prepared by the Commissioner in the case, as A and A-1.
- Between the plot marked A and the vagu (a water stream) are lands belonging to the defendants. These have been shown in Exs. A-4 as B and B-1.
- The former belongs to the fifth defendant in the case, who is the sole respondent in S.A. No. 1933 of 1953; and the plot marked B-1 is owned by defendants Nos. 1 to 4.
- The vagu forms the western boundary of the three plots, B, B-1 and A-1. It may be taken as established that the fifth defendant had constructed a bund (sand raised to demarcate the portions) on her land to preserve part of it from damage by the flow of water through a breach in the embankment of the vagu. Ex. A-4 shows the breach to be in plot B, and marks the bund as T.
- It is equally clear that defendants Nos. 1 to 4 have dug a trench to ward off water entering their plot B/1; which trench is marked as C in the Commissioner’s plan.
- These defendants have further constructed another bund to the north of their land as additional safeguard. Ex. A-4 also shows in plot B yet another bund as XZ, which has been built to prevent water stopped by the trench and the bund, from entering other parts of the fifth defendants’ land.
- Finally, there is a bund in the appellant’s plot A, which runs parallel to the boundary between plots A and B, and has several breaches in it.
Lower appellant Court rejected the appeal and decided in favor of the Defendants.
- Appellant says, ‘def 5th put up bund because of enmity and def 1st to 4th dug trench and put up bund on their own plots’.
- Rainwater falling on the plots flowed into plot A, washing crops of appellant and bunds put up by appellant along west of Plot A washes away because of rainfall.
Reliefs claimed in this second appeal:
- For Mandatory injunction, to demolish the bunds and to fill in the trench on the defendants’ land.
- For Permanent Injunction against defendants putting up bunds and digging trenches.
- For Rs. 300/- as damages for loss.
Ratio by Court:
- Vagu on west is a regular stream as per Commissioner’s plan.
- Flood water caused damage, so the defendant had riparian rights to protect their land.
- Owner should enjoy the power of reasonably selecting how to protect land.
- No evidence that 5th Def is putting bunds negligently to protect the land.
- No data to prove that accumulated water is diverted from Plot B towards Plot A.
- As per deposition of PW1, no obstruction in the vagu.
- This case is of damnum sine injuria, therefore, plaintiff must also adopt protective measures against flood water.
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