Plaintiff resided in a house next to a Roman Catholic Chapel of which defendant was the Priest. The Chapel bell Kept ringing at all hours of day and night. Advise the plaintiff.
The plaintiff can sue for private nuisance, though it is a public nuisance, because it created special damage to the plaintiff and hence he could prevent it by filing a suit for injunction.
Public Nuisance is an act or omission of an act causing common injuries, danger or annoyance to the public. It may be also to dwelling property.
Generally, a private individual cannot sue for public nuisance.
But if the following three conditions are satisfied, then private individuals can maintain a suit for public nuisance:
- The plaintiff must have suffered special damage. It must be greater than that of the damage suffered by the rest of the public.
- The injury or loss to the plaintiff must be direct and natural.
- The injury or loss to the plaintiff must be substantial, not negligible.
Only if the above three essentials are satisfied, the private individual can sue for public nuisance.
In the given case, though the ringing of the church bell is public nuisance, the plaintiff suffered special damage, direct and substantial and hence he is entitled to an injunction.
The facts of the given problem resemble that of a famous case ‘Soltau Vs. De held’ in which the Court upheld the same decision.