1. This is a revision petition against the judgment in S. C. No. 86 of 47-48 on the file of the Munsiff of Hassan, decreeing the plaintiff's suit for rent as prayed for.
2. According to the allegations in the plaint, the plaintiff leased the property to the defendant as stated in what was termed as rent chit. The defendant denied his having executed the rent chit and his being a tenant. He did not claim any title of his own in the property. The lower Court believed that the rent chit was executed by the defendant. The main contention urged in revision against the decision of the lower Court is that the suit based on unregistered document referred to as the rent chit is not maintainable.
3. According to Section 105, T. P. Act, a lease of immovable property is a transfer of a right to enjoy such property, made for a certain time, express or implied, or in perpetuity, in consideration of a price paid or promised, or of money, a share of crops, service or any other thing of value, to be rendered, periodically or on specified occasions, to the transferor by the transferee, who accepts the transfer on such terms. It will be noticed that the document must purport to transfer a right to enjoy. The transfer can only be made by the landlord. This must be accepted by the tenant. The document referred to as the rent chit purports to be executed by the petitioner, who is the tenant. It cannot, therefore, be a lease deed at all and no question of registration arises. In the decision reported in Mt. Nasiban v. Mahomed Syed, A. I. R. (23) 1936 Nag. 174 : (164 I. C. 557), which refers to a rent note purporting to grant lease of property for 11 months which is cot registered, it is observed that such a note does not operate as a lease and is inadmissible in evidence to prove the period for which the lease is granted and the rent due under it. It will be noticed that the case is dealing with a document which according to that decision purports to grant lease of property for 11 months. In this cage, the document has not been executed by the landlord and it does not purport to transfer any interest in the property. It may be stated here though that decision was arrived at on the basis that the document purported to be a lease deed, the decision has not been followed in a later decision of the same High Court reported in Tulsiram v. Govinda, 189 I.C. 753 ; (A.I.R. (27) 1940 Nag. 143), There has also been an earlier decision of the same Court holding a different view, Vide Birdichand v. Popat Lal, A. I. R. (13) 1926 Nag. 389 : (24 N.L.R. 68), It would be useful to refer to the following observations in Tulsiram v. Govinda, 189 I.C. 753 : (A.I.R. (27) 1940 Nag. 143) :
'The defendant while admitting execution of the rent note pleaded that it was bogus, and subsequently took an extra plea that the rent note was inadmissible in evidence for want of registration, The lower Courts relying on Mt. Nasiban v. Mahmed Syed, A.I.R. (28) 1936 Nag. 174 : (161 I. C. 557), have upheld this last plea. The rent' note is said to require registration under Section 107, T. P. Act and Section 17(d), Registration Act. This depends on whether it amounts to a lease or not. It is executed by the lessee only, and is an agreement to take the houses on rent, i. e. it is a unilateral document a Kabuliyat. As the lease is for six months it did not require to be made by a registered instrument under Section 107 but could be by oral agreement accompanied by delivery of possession. If the Kabuliyat is to be looked upon as the lease then it of course would have to be registered and would require to be executed by both lessor and lessee. There is no other document executed by the lessor, and I do not see how one should be forced to look upon this Kabuliyat as a lease invalid both for want of registration and for want of signature by both parties. It would be in compliance with the law to regard the lease as made by oral agreement and the acknowledgment of the lease (kabuliat) to be by this document, which then did not require registration at all. In Birdichand v. Popatlal, A. I R. (13) 1926 Nag. 389 : (24 N. L. R. 68) such a Kabuliyat or rent note was held not to require registration under Section 107, T. P. Act, not being a lease granted by the lessor. This case does not appear to have been brought to the notice of Bose J. in deciding Nasiban v. Muhammad Syed, L. P. A. No. 17 of 1936 In fact it seems to have been assumed in that case without discussion that the rent note did amount to a lease. As the point was not discussed I do not feel pressed by that decision.'
I may also refer to the decision in Mohanlal v. Ganda Singh, A. I. R. (30) 1943 Lah. 127 : (I. L. R. (1943) Lah. 695 F. B.), which deals with what is referred to as Kabuliyat executed only by the lessee. It was observed in that case :
'A rent deed (not compulsorily registrable under the Registration Act) executed by & tenant in favour of a landlord, if not registered, can be relied upon to establish the relationship existing between the parties. For, it contains an admission or an acknowledgment by the person attempted to be made liable and should be the very best evidence that one can possibly have as to the oral agreement of a lease and a Court is not prevented from looking into it for this purpose.'
This is not even a case in which the lessee alone has affixed his signature to the document, as in case of Mohan Lal v. Ganda Singh, A.I.R. (30) 1943 Lah. 127 : (I. L. R. (1943) Lah. 695 F. B.). The rent chit in this case is executed by the tenant who at the time of its execution had no right to transfer. The document relied on in the plaint does not amount to a lease deed at all as a lease is a transfer of a right. It cannot, therefore, be said that it is inadmissible for want of registration.
4. According to the allegations in the plaint there was a lease between the plaintiff and the defendant, as stated in the document referred to above. This does not amount to a lease deed though it is referred to by the plaintiff as rent chit. His saying that it is a rent chit does not make it a lease deed. All that could be said is that there was a lease which did not come into existence under any written lease deed, and as such the lower Court was right in decreeing the suit as prayed for relying on the rent chit as an admission of the lease.
5. The revision petition stands, therefore, dismissed with costs.