Roof Right of a Person vs. right of access of others

Consultant & Legal Analyst

Hi Experts,

Your valuable advice is sought on the matter detailed below:

A Top floor Flat build by a developer/ builder is purchased by a person ALONG WITH its Roof Right in 2002. Other floors of the building had already been purchased by different persons before the sale of Top Floor Flat by the Building Owner.

Water Tanks of all the Flats of the building are placed at the roof top of the Top Floor owner. The Registered Deeds of all other Flat Owners contain the provision that they would be free to have access to the roof for the purpose of maintenance of their water tanks. BUT no staircase exists o go to the roof top and there is no other way to go to the roof top except through the sitting room of the Top Floor Owner by placing a ladder.

But on the purchase of the top floor by the person no fresh agreement was entered in to by any of the lower Flat Owners for making any access to the roof top. Privacy of the Top Floor Owner is frequently violated not only by other Flat Owners, but also by plumbers hired by them from time to time.

Due to unrestricted overflow of water from water tanks of other Flat Owners on account of excessive boosting by their booster pumps, the ceiling of two rooms of the Top Floor started leaking and dripping of seeped water from place to place causing much damage to the furniture and accessories, etc. When asked to share the cost of repair of the roof, every other Flat Owner declined to share any expenses. Not only the roof had to be repaired extensively, waterproofed, and paved, but also expenditure had to be incurred for removal and reinstallation of their water tanks, including bearing of the cost of other accessories used in reinstallation. But none bothered to share even a single paisa for all that. But when the Ground Floor Owner reconstructed the platform in front of the entrance of the building and another platform at the backside of the building, which only for the use of the Ground Floor Owner, made the Top Floor Owner to share the expenditure with him.

Again when some water supply pipeline was considered to have been damaged, he wanted the top floor owner to share the cost even for reconstruction of the platform of the backside of the building, which is solely used by the Ground Floor Owner. When reminded that nobody shared any expenditure with me for the repair of the roof top damaged extensively by the constant water overflow from the water, his pat reply was that the liability rested with the person having the Roof Right. On reminding that they and their plumbers also approach to roof top, his pat reply was he had the right to go to the roof top since his water tank is placed there.

So, my QUERIES to the Experts are:

(1) Whether, the other Flat Owners are not obliged to enter in to a fresh agreement with the top floor owner, as the roof right rests with him only, and the original building owner and developer has already sold he roof rights to the Top Floor Owner? If so under which section of which Act of law?

(2) Whether the Other Floor Owners have the right to go to the roof top through the private property of the Top Floor Owner? If so, under which section of which Act of law?

(3) Whether, the Top Floor Owner is obliged to provide access to the roof top to the other floor owners even through his private property? If so, under which section of which Act of law?

(4) Whether the Owner with roof rights can charge any rent or license fee from the other floor owners for the space being used by them for placing and maintenance of their water tanks at the roof top? If so, under which section of which Act of law?

Experts may kindly like to lend their valuable advice to sort out the aforesaid matter.

With best regards


U have raised a good question.


let us see how the experts reply.


Consultant & Legal Analyst

Dear Radhey,

Thanks for the compliments.

Senior Consultant

1) there is no provision of law which will directly address your problem.

2) the solution to your problem will stem from Indian Easement Act. wherein certain parts of the amenities will have to be interpreted as easements along with the purchase of the property.

3) it is not an easy and a straight forward case; therefore the most agrieved part can approach the court seeking mandatory injunction. this would result in putting restrains on others, thereby adding to pressure of compromise.

And trust me, that is the ONLY way...




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