- Particulars to be contained in the plaint. – The plaint shall contain the following particulars:—
(a) the name of the Court in which the suit is brought ;
(b) the name, description, and place of residence of the plaintiff;
(c) the name, description, and place of residence of the defendant, so far as they can be ascertained;
(d) where the plaintiff or the defendant is a minor or a person of unsound mind, a statement to that effect;
(e) the facts constituting the cause of action and when it arose;
(f) the facts showing that the Court has jurisdiction;
(g) the relief which the plaintiff claims;
(h) where the plaintiff has allowed a set-off or relinquished a portion of his claim, the amount so allowed or relinquished; and
(i) a statement of the value of the subject-matter of the suit for the purposes of jurisdiction and of court fees, so far as the case admits.
- In money suits. – Where the plaintiff seeks the recovery of money, the plaint shall state the precise amount claimed:
But where the plaintiff sues for mesne profits, or for an amount which will be found due to him on taking unsettled accounts between him and the defendant, [or for movables in the possession of the defendant, or for debts of which the value he cannot, after the exercise of reasonable diligence, estimate, the plaint shall state approximately the amount or value sued for].
- Where the subject-matter of the suit is immovable property. – Where the subject-matter of the suit is immovable property, the plaint shall contain a description of the property sufficient to identify it, and, in case such property can be identified by boundaries or numbers in a record of settlement or survey, the plaint shall specify such boundaries or numbers.
- When the plaintiff sues as representative. – Where the plaintiff sues in a representative character the plaint shall show not only that he has an actual existing interest in the subject matter, but that he has taken the steps (if any) necessary to enable him to institute a suit concerning it.
- Defendant’s interest and liability to be shown. – The plaint shall show that the defendant is or claims to be interested in subject-matter and that he is liable to be called upon to answer the plaintiff’s demand.
- Grounds of exemption from limitation law. – Where the suit is instituted after the expiration of the period prescribed by the law of limitation, the plaint shall show the ground upon which exemption from such law is claimed :
[Provided that the Court may permit the plaintiff to claim exemption from the law of limitation on any ground not set out in the plaint, if such ground is not inconsistent with the grounds set out in the plaint.]
- Relief to be specifically stated. – Every plaint shall state specifically the relief which the plaintiff claims either simply or in the alternative, and it shall not be necessary to ask for general or other relief which may always be given as the Court may think just to the same extent as if it had been asked for. And the same rule shall apply to any relief claimed by the defendant in his written statement.
- Relief founded on separate ground. – Where the plaintiff seeks relief in respect of several distinct claims or causes of action founded upon separate and district grounds, they shall be stated as far as may be separately and distinctly.
- Procedure on admitting plaint.- Where the Court orders that the summons be served on the defendants in the manner provided in rule 9 of Order V, it will direct the plaintiff to present as many copies of the plaint on plain paper as there are defendants within seven days from the date of such order along with requisite fee for service of summons on the defendants.
Rejection of plaint. – The plaint shall be rejected in the following cases:—
(a) where it does not disclose a cause of action;
(b) where the relief claimed is undervalued, and the plaintiff, on being required by the Court to correct the valuation within a time to be fixed by the Court, fails to do so;
(c) where the relief claimed is properly valued, but the plaint is returned upon paper insufficiently stamped, and the plaintiff, on being required by the Court to supply the requisite stamp-paper within a time to be fixed by the Court, fails to do so;
(d) where the suit appears from the statement in the plaint to be barred by any law :
(e)where it is not filed in duplicate;
[Provided that the time fixed by the Court for the correction of the valuation or supplying of the requisite stamp-paper shall not be extended unless the Court, for reasons to be recorded, is satisfied that the plaintiff was prevented by any cause of an exceptional nature form correcting the valuation or supplying the requisite stamp-paper, as the case may be, within the time fixed by the Court and that refusal to extend such time would cause grave injustice to the plaintiff.]
- Procedure on rejecting plaint. – Where a plaint is rejected the Judge shall record an order to that effect with the reasons for such order.
- Where rejection of plaint does not preclude presentation of fresh plaint. – The rejection of the plaint on any of the grounds herein before mentioned shall not of its own force preclude the plaintiff from presenting a fresh plaint in respect of the same cause of action.
Pleading. – “Pleading”, shall mean plaint or written statement.
Pleading to state material facts and not evidence.— (1) Every pleading shall contain, and contain only a statement in a concise form of the material facts on which the party pleading relies for his claim or defence as the case may be, but not the evidence by which they are to be proved.
(2) Every pleading shall, when necessary, be divided into paragraphs, numbered consecutively, each allegation being, so far as is convenient, contained in a separate paragraph.
(3) Dates, sums and numbers shall be expressed in a pleading in figures as well as in words.]
Forms of pleading. – The forms in Appendix A when applicable, and where they are not applicable forms of the like character, nearly as may be, shall be used for all pleadings.
Particulars to be given where necessary. – In all cases in which the party pleading relies on any misrepresentation, fraud, breach of trust, wilful default, or undue influence, and in all other cases in which particulars may be necessary beyond such as are exemplified in the forms aforesaid, particulars (with dates and items if necessary) shall be stated in the pleading.
Condition precedent. – Any condition precedent, the performance or occurrence of which is intended to be contested, shall be distinctly specified in his pleading by the plaintiff or defendant, as the case my be; and, subject thereto, an avertnment of the performance or occurrence of all conditions precedent necessary for the case of the plaintiff or defendant shall be implied in his pleading.
Departure. – No pleading shall, except by way of amendment, raise any new ground of claim or contain any allegation of fact inconsistent with the previous pleadings of the party pleading the same.
Denial of contract. – Where a contract is alleged in any pleading, a bare denial of the same by the opposite party shall be construed only as a denial in fact of the express contract alleged or of the matters of fact from which the same may be implied and not as a denial of the legality or sufficiency in law of such contract.
Effect of document to be stated.. – Wherever the contents of any document are material, it shall be sufficient in any pleading to state the effect thereof as briefly as possible, without setting out the whole or any part thereof, unless the precise words of the document or any part thereof are material.
Malice, knowledge, etc.,. – Wherever it is material to allege malice, fraudulent intention, knowledge or other condition of the mind of any person, it shall be sufficient to allege the same as a fact without setting out the circumstances from which the same is to be inferred.
Notice. – Wherever it is material to allege notice to any person of any fact, mater or thing, it shall be sufficient to allege such notice as a fact, unless the form or the precise terms of such notice, or the circumstances from which such notice is to be inferred are material.
Implied contract, or relation. – Wherever any contract or any relation between any persons is to be implied from a series of letters or conversations or otherwise from a number of circumstances it shall be sufficient to allege such contract or relation as a fact, and to refer generally to such letter, conversations or circumstances without setting them out in detail. And if in such case the person so pleading desires to rely in the alternative upon more contracts or relations than one as to be implied from such circumstances, he may state the same in the alternative.
Presumptions of law. – Neither party need in any pleading allege any matter of fact which the law presumes in his favour or as to which the burden of proof lies upon the other side unless the same has first been specifically denied (e.g. consideration for a bill of exchange where the plaintiff sues only on the bill and not for the consideration as a substantive ground of claim.)
Pleading to be signed. – Every pleading shall be signed by the party and his pleader (if any) :
Provided that where a party pleading is, by reason of absence or for other good cause, unable to sign the pleading it may be signed by any person duly authorized by him to sign the same or to sue or defend on his behalf.
Verification of pleadings. – (1) Save as otherwise provided by any law for the time being in force, every pleading shall be varied at the foot by the party or by one of the parties pleading or by some other person proved to the satisfaction of the Court to be acquainted with the facts of the case.
(2) The person verifying shall specify, by reference to the numbered paragraphs of the pleading, what he verifies of his own knowledge and what he verifies upon information received and believed to be true.
(3) The verification shall be signed by the person making it and shall state the date on which and the place at which it was signed.
(4) The person verifying the pleading shall also furnish an affidavit in support of his pleadings.
Amendment of pleadings. – The Court may at any stage of the proceedings allow either party to alter or amend his pleadings in such manner and on such terms as may be just, and all such amendments shall be made as may be necessary for the purpose of determining the real questions in controversy between the parties:
Provided that no application for amendment shall be allowed after the trial has commenced, unless the Court comes to the conclusion that in spite of due diligence, the party could not have raised the matter before the commencement of trial.
Failure to amend after order. – If a party who has obtained an order for leave to amend does not amend accordingly within the time limited for that purpose by the order, or if no time is thereby limited then within fourteen days from the date of the order, he shall not be permitted to amend after the expiration of such limited time as aforesaid or of such fourteen days, as the case may be, unless the time is extended by the Court.
Written statement. – [(1)]The defendant shall, at or before the first hearing or within such time as the Court may permit, present a written statement of his defense.
Provided that where the defendant fails to file the written statement within the said period of thirty days, he shall be allowed to file the same on such other day, as may be specified by the Court, for reasons to be recorded in writing, but which shall not be later than ninety days from the date of service of summons.
Duty of defendant to produce documents upon which relief is claimed or relied upon by him.-(1) Where the defendant bases his defence upon a document or relies upon any document in his possession or power, in support of his defence or claim for set-off or counter-claim, he shall enter such document in a list, and shall produce it in Court when the written statement is presented by him and shall, at the same time, deliver the document and a copy thereof, to be filed with the written statement.
(2) Where any such document is not in the possession or power of the defendant, he shall, wherever possible, state in whose possession or power it is.]
[(3) A document which ought to be produced in Court by the defendant under this rule, but, is not so produced shall not, without the leave of the Court, be received in evidence on his behalf at the hearing of the suit.]
[(4) Nothing in this rule shall apply to documents
(a) produced for the cross-examination of the plaintiff’s witnesses, or
(b) handed over to a witness merely to refresh his memory.]
New facts must be specially pleaded. – The defendant must raise by his pleading all matters which show the suit not be maintainable, or that the transaction is either void or voidable in point of law, and all such grounds of defence as, if not raised, would be likely to take the opposite party by surprise, or would raise issues of fact not arising out of the plaint, as, for instance, fraud, limitation, release, payment, performance, or facts showing illegality.
Denial to be specific. – It shall not be sufficient for a defendant in his written statement to deny generally the grounds alleged by the plaintiff, but the defendant must deal specifically with each allegation of fact of which he does not admit the truth, except damages.
Evasive denial. – Where a defendant denies an allegation of fact in the plaint, he must not do so evasively, but answer the point of substance, Thus, if it is alleged that he received a certain sum of money, it shall not be sufficient to deny that he received that particular amount, but he must deny that he received that sum or any part thereof, or else set out how much he received. And if an allegation is made with diverse circumstances, it shall not be sufficient to deny it along with those circumstances.
Specific denial. – [(1)]Every allegation of fact in the plaint, if not denied specifically or by necessary implication, or stated to be not admitted in the pleading of the defendant, shall be taken to be admitted except as against a person under disability :
Provided that the Court may in it discretion require any fact so admitted to be proved otherwise than by such admission.
[(2) Where the defendant has not filed a pleading, it shall be lawful for the Court to pronounce judgment on the basis of the facts contained in the plaint, except as against a person under a disability, but the Court may, in its discretion, require any such fact to be proved.
(3) In exercising its discretion under the proviso to sub-rule (1) or under sub-rule (2), the Court shall have due regard to the fact whether the defendant could have, or has, engaged a pleader.
(4) Whenever a judgment is pronounced under this rule, a decree shall be drawn up in accordance with such judgment and such decree shall bear the date on which the judgment was pronounced.]
Particulars of set-off to be given in written statement. – (1) Where in a suit for the recovery of money the defendant claims to set-off against the plaintiff’s demand any ascertained sum of money legally recoverable by him from the plaintiff, not exceeding the pecuniary limits of the jurisdiction of the Court, and both parties fill the same character as they fill in the plaintiff’s suit, the defendant may, at the first hearing of the suit, but not afterwards unless permitted by the Court, presents a written statement containing the particulars of the debt sought to be set-off.
(2) Effect of set-off.—The written statement shall have the same effect as a plaint in a cross-suit so as to enable the Court to pronounce a final judgment in respect both of the original claim and of the set-off : but this shall not affect the lien, upon the amount decreed, of any pleader in respect of the costs payable to him under the decree.
(3) The rules relating to a written statement by a defendant apply to a written statement in answer to a claim of set-off.
[6A. Counter-claim by defendant. — (1) A defendant in a suit may, in addition to his right of pleading a set-off under rule 6, set up, by way of counter-claim against the claim of the plaintiff, any right or claim in respect of a cause of action accruing to the defendant against the plaintiff either before or after the filing of the suit but before the defendant has delivered his defence or before the time limited for delivering his defence has expired. whether such counter-claim is in the nature of a claim for damages or not :
Provided that such counter-claim shall not exceed the pecuniary limits of the jurisdiction of the Court.
(2) Such counter-claim shall have the same effect as a cross-suit so as to enable the Court to pronounce a final judgment in the same suit, both on the original claim and on the counter-claim.
(3) The plaintiff shall be at liberty to file a written statement in answer to the counter-claim of the defendant within such period as may be fixed by the Court.
(4) The counter-claim shall be treated as a plaint and governed by the rules applicable to plaints.
6B. Counter-claim to be stated. – Where any defendant seeks to rely upon any ground as supporting a right of counter-claim, he shall, in his written statement, state specifically that he does so by way of counter-claim.
6C. Exclusion of counter-claim. – Where a defendant sets up a counter-claim and the plaintiff contends that the claim thereby raised ought not to be disposed of by way of counter-claim but in an independent suit, the plaintiff may, at any time before issues are settled in relation to the counter-claim, apply to the Court for an order that such counter-claim may be excluded, and the Court may, on the hearing of such application make such order as it thinks fit.
6D. Effect of discontinuance of suit. – If in any case in which the defendant sets up a counter-claim, the suit of the plaintiff is stayed, discontinued or dismissed, the counter-claim may nevertheless be proceeded with.
6E. Default of plaintiff to reply to counter-claim. – If the plaintiff makes default in putting in reply to the counter-claim made by the defendant, the Court may pronounce judgment against the plaintiff in relation to the counter-claim made against him or make such order in relation to the counter-claim as it thinks fit.
6F. Relief to defendant where counter-claim succeeds. – Where in any suit a set-off or counter-claim is established as defence against the plaintiff’s claim and any balance is found due to the plaintiff or the defendant, as the case may be, the Court may give judgment to the party entitled to such balance.
6G. Rules relating to written statement to apply. – The rules relating to a written statement by a defendant shall apply to a written statement filed in answer to a counter-claim.]
- Defence or set-off founder upon separate grounds. – Where the defendant relies upon several distinct grounds of defence or set-off [or counter-claim]founded separate and distinct facts, they shall be stated, as far as may be, separately and distinctly.
- New ground of defence. – Any ground of defence which has arisen after the institution of the suit or the presentation of a written statement claiming a set-off [or counter-claim]may be raised by the defendant or plaintiff as the case may be, in his written statement.
8A. Duty of defendant to produce documents upon which relief is claimed by him.- [Omitted by the Code of Civil Procedure (Amendment) Act, 1999 (46 of 1999), section 18 (w.e.f. 1.7.2002).]
9. Subsequent pleadings. – No pleading subsequent to the written statement of a defendant other than by way of defence to a set-off or counter-claim shall be presented except by the leave of the Court and upon such terms as the Court thinks fit, but the Court may at any time require a written statement or additional written statement from any of the parties and fix a time for presenting the same.
10. Procedure when party fails to present written statement called for by Court. – Where any party from whom a written statement is required under rule 1 or 9 fails to present the same within the time permitted or fixed by the Court, as the case may be, the Court shall pronounce judgment against him or make such order in relation to the suit as it thinks fit and on the pronouncement of such judgment, a decree shall be drawn up.]