Essentials of Easement under Easement Act

The word "easement" is derived from the old Latin word "aisementum," which originally meant "comfort, convenience, or privilege." From an early easement, the term has developed into "a legal right or privilege to use anything other than one's own." The right to use another person's property is granted to the holder of an easement through the creation of a non-possessive property interest.

It alludes to the privilege that a man might occasionally enjoy, a right that is granted to the person doing something on the grantor's real property without adding value to the actual property itself.

What is Easement?

According to Section 4 of The Indian Easements Act, 1882, an "easement" is a right that the owner or occupier of a specific parcel of land has in order to use that land in a beneficial manner by doing or continuing to do something on it or by stopping something from happening on another parcel of land that is not his own.

According to Halsbury's Laws of England- An easement is "a right annexed to land, to utilize other land of different ownership in a particular manner, or to prevent the owner of the other land from using his land in a particular manner."


  • Aman has the authority to take water from Samar's pond to water the plants in the garden that is connected to his house because he is the owner of that particular house. This easement exists.

  • Rohan permits a specific area or surface of his property to be used for passage and re-passing by members of the general public. There is no easement here.

Essentials of Easement

According to Section 4 of the Indian Easement Act, 1882, the idea of an easement over property entails a number of fundamental terms of usage that are legally specified. Which are −

  • Dominant Heritage and Dominant Owner − The dominant owner is the landowner, who has rights over land that is not his own. The land under this situation is referred to as the dominant legacy or dominating tenement.

  • Servient Heritage and Servient Owner − The property is referred to as a servient heritage or servient tenement, and the actual owner is referred to as the servient owner. The servient owner cannot protest against the dominant owner using his land. When referring to the dominant owner and the servient owner, various phrases are used to refer to the same parcel of land.

    As an illustration, Aman owns some land and has given Sana an easement over it. In this case, Aman is the servant owner and comes from a servant family. Sana has a dominating background and is the dominant owner. The dominant and servient owners must be distinct, so the owner of the land cannot obtain an easement over it as he already holds the title.

  • Positive or Negative Easement − According to Section 7 of the Act, a positive easement occurs when the dominant owner establishes his right to the land through certain actions, such as using the water that flows through the land or constructing a pedestrian path. It is referred to as a negative easement if the dominant owner uses whatever means, whether legal or illegal, to hinder the servient owner from using the property.

Notable Case Laws

The English Law acknowledged the right to commit annoyance as an easementary right obtained by prescription in Bai Bhicaji v. Phirozshah, 40 Bom. 401, and the Bombay High Court once more upheld this interpretation.

The Allehabad High Court later ruled in Bankeylal v. Kishanlal, AIR.1967 ALL.43, that spreading night soil on someone else's property is an illegal nuisance that cannot be acquired as a matter of right through prescription.

In Hrudananda Biswal v. The Union of India (W.P.(C) NO. 6675 OF 2003), the petitioner Hrudananda was denied access to a public road from his property by South Eastern Railways, Kolkata, and as a result, he filed a writ petition in 2003. The court determined that there was no denial of access to the indicated plot after hearing railways' explanation of a potential security threat.


According to the Patna High Court's observations in Raj Narain v. Ram Kishan (AIR 1958 Pat.571) −

Thus, easements imply the existence of dominant and subservient tenements. This right is used to enjoy the dominant heritage in a positive way.

As a result, an easementary right is granted for special compensation for specific violations of the common fundamental rights, but it does not ensure ownership of another party's property. It only establishes a procedure for the ongoing right of one person to use another person's property for a specific purpose and in a specific way.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. What is the history of easement in India?

Ans. The Limitation Act of 1871, which was subsequently replaced by the Act of 1877, was the first piece of legislation in India to clearly acknowledge easement rights. These Acts allow someone who has no other rights to gain a title, but they do not preclude ways to acquire easementory rights.

Q2. Who may impose an easement?

Ans. Anyone may impose an easement under the conditions, to the degree, in, and for the purpose of which he may transfer his interest in the legacy upon which the responsibility is to be imposed.

Q3. What is the purpose of easement act?

Ans. An easement is a right that the owner or occupier of a certain piece of land has as such for the purpose of enjoying that land in a beneficial manner. It allows them to do and continue doing something, or to stop and continue stopping something from being done, in or upon, or in relation to, a specific piece of other land that is not their own.

Q4. Can easement be transferred?

Ans. A right that is tied to property and has no independent existence, an easement is an incident of ownership. This means that it cannot be transferred. It states that a property interest that is exclusive to the owner personally cannot be transferred by him.

Updated on: 09-May-2023

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