The Supreme Court in the matter of Seethammal and Anr. v/s Narayanasamy and Observed that a first appeal and a second appeal arising out of two proceedings between the same parties having a common dispute cannot be clubbed and disposed of by a common judgment even though the parties are the same and the property in dispute is common.
The court observed that the considerations made in the first appeal and the considerations made in the second appeal under sections 96 and 100 of CPC respectively are entirely different stating examples such as the re-appreciation of evidence will only arise while deciding the first appeal and not the second appeal.
Justice AS Bopanna and Justice Hima Kohli transferred back the first appeal and the second appeal arising out of two suits back to the Madras High Court which had disposed of them by a common judgment.
The suit was filed in 1996 for declaring the plaintiffs as absolute owners of the property however the suit was dismissed in 1998 so an appeal was preferred against the dismissal which was disallowed and therefore a second appeal was preferred challenging the decision.
In the year 2001, another suit was filed seeking partition and separation of properties which also included the property in the previous suit.
The suit for partition was allowed and therefore a regular first appeal was filed.
The Madras High Court had clubbed the appeals observing that both the parties in the proceedings are the same.
However, the Apex Court observed that in normal circumstances the High Court would have been justified in doing so by considering the matters together in order to prevent contradicting decrees however in the present case the court observed that the one is a regular first appeal while the other one is a second appeal and the consideration in this appeals are entirely different.
The apex court without deciding the matter on merit observed that the High Court must take into consideration the facts of the first appeal and decide the same and decide the second appeal independently.
Thus the Apex Court made it clear that the two appeals remanded back to High Court are to be decided or considered independently.