Date: 6 December, 2020
by Anmol Kaur Sidhu, UILS, Panjab University
Immovable property in a layman’s language can be said to be anything that is attached to the surface of earth and cannot be moved or it could be anything that is permanently attached to a thing that cannot be moved.
Section 3 of the Transfer of Property Act, 1882 defines that immovable property excludes standing timber, growing crops or grass which is neither clear or complete in itself.
According to Section 4 of the General Clauses Act, 1897 immovable property includes land, benefits to arise out of land and things attached to earth. This definition applies to the Transfer of Property Act, 1882. But this definition is also not very clear. Thus, according to definition of both these Acts immovable property can be defined as following:
Immovable property includes:
Benefits to arise out of land
Things attached to earth
a. Land: It basically means surface of the earth. It includes everything upon, under and above the surface of land. Therefore it includes everything from soil, mud to river, streams, gold and coal deposits as well as house, building.
b. Benefits to arise out of land: Any benefit arising out of land is also an immovable property. Any right which is exercised over a land and by the exercise of which a person gets certain profit is regarded as his intangible immovable property. E.g. right of tenant, right to extract coal or gold.
c. Things attached to the Earth: Section 3 Of the Transfer of Property Act, 1882 defines this expression separately. It includes
Things embedded in the Earth – It includes things which are firmly fixed in the surface of the Earth and thus become a part of it.e.g. houses buildings,poles etc. The things which are placed without any intention to make them a part of the land are not immovable property even if they are firmly fixed in the surface eg. A stone which is embedded in the earth by its own weight or machinery. Machinery cannot be considered as immovable property because it is not installed for the beneficial enjoyment of the property.