THE SPECIFIC RELIEF ACT, 1963
Section 31: When cancellation may be ordered.-
1. Any person against whom a written instrument is void or voidable, and who has reasonable apprehension that such instrument, if left outstanding may cause him serious injury, may sue to have it adjudged void or voidable; and the court may, in its discretion, so adjudge it and order it to be delivered up and cancelled.
2. If the instrument has been registered under the Indian Registration Act, 1908 (16 of 1908 ), the court shall also send a copy of its decree to the officer in whose office the instrument has been so registered; and such officer shall note on the copy of the instrument contained in his books the fact of its cancellation.
In one of the full bench Judgment of Allahabad H.C (Ram Padarath and Ors. v. Second Addl. D.J., Sultanpur and Ors) it is held as:
" Suit for cancellation a sale-deed or other instruments and documents are essentially suits of civil nature. Every suit of civil nature is cognizable by a civil court except cognizance of which is expressly or impliedly barred.
Section 31 of the Specific Relief Act makes specific provision for cancellation of void as well as voidable instrument. Suits for cancellation of such documents being of civil nature are cognizable by a civil court and even otherwise suits claiming relief provided under Specific Rebel Act are entertainable only by a civil court and no revenue court or any other court can entertain such a suit including for cancellation of an instrument or document.
Thus on who has reasonable apprehension that any instrument if left outstanding may cause him serious injury can approach a competent court of law to get it cancelled. Sub-section (2) of Section 31 casts a mandatory duty upon the court passing a decree to send a copy of the same to the registering officer, who is enjoined by law to make a note on the copy of such document regarding the orders of its cancellation passed by a particular court and after such an endorsement is made, the, document becomes legally ineffective and no benefit of the same can be derived by any one. If a certified copy of such a document is issued it would obviously contain the note regarding its cancellation by a court of law.
So far as voidable documents like those obtained by practicing coercion, fraud, misrepresentation, undue influence etc., are concerned, their legal effect cannot be put to an end without its cancellation. But a void document is not required to be cancelled necessarily. Its legal effect if any lean be put to an end without its cancellation. But a void document is not required to be cancelled necessarily. Its legal effect if any can be put to an end to by declaring it to be void and granting some other relief instead of canceling it.
In this case of void document said to have been executed by a plaintiff during his disability or by some one impersonating him or said to have been executed by his predecessor whom he succeeds, the relief of cancellation of the document is more appropriate relief for clearing the deck of title and burying deep any dispute or controversy on its basis in present or which may take place in future. The document after its cancellation would bear such an endorsement in Sub-Registrar's register and would be the basis for correction of any paper and revenue record including record of register. Section 31 of the Specific Relief Act itself prescribes as to who can seek relief of cancellation. A third person cannot fide a suit for cancellation of a void document. If in fact no decree for cancellation was needed and real and effective relief could be granted by the Revenue Court only, the Civil Court decree would even then be valid and not void if no objection to the same was taken before the trial Court. If such an objection was taken before the trial Court before framing of issues and objection continued to be taken before appellate and revisional Court and there has been failure of justice because of change of forum then the Civil Court decree could be said to be without jurisdiction."
But, in few matter the Apex Court decision is to approach the "Revenue Authority" for "cancellation of Sale Deed"
Kindly go through the following attached Judgments