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Gorakh Lal Vs. Maha Prasad NaraIn Singh and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtAllahabad High Court
Decided On
Case NumberSecond Appeal Nos. 774, 914, 1451, 1712 and 4616 of 1959 and 2272 and 3104 of 1960
Judge
Reported inAIR1964All260
ActsTransfer of Property Act, 1882 - Sections 106; Uttar Pradesh Transfer of Property (Amendment) Act, 1954
AppellantGorakh Lal
RespondentMaha Prasad NaraIn Singh and ors.
Appellant AdvocateR.B. Misra, Adv.
Respondent AdvocateG.P. Bhargava, Adv.
Excerpt:
.....to quit - section 106 of transfer of property act, 1882 (as amended by u.p. act, 1954) - thirty days notice for terminating tenancy is valid. - - all the members or the court who decided the case were of the opinion that a notice to quit on the 18th would have been a good notice. a notice to quit at the first moment of the anniversary ought to be just as good as a notice to quit on the last moment of the day before. on the wording of the notice as a whole it is obvious that the tenant was given until the expiration of the month of the tenancy, that is to say until midnight of the 30th of june, to vacate the house and so far as this point goes the notice was unquestionably valid and in accordance with the requirements of the law'.the notices in the present cases are exactly to the..........landlord for the ejectment of his tenant and the question for consideration is whether a thirty days notice of ejectment under section 106 of the transfer of property act as amended by u.p. act no. xxiv of 1954 was valid in each case. apart from the validity or invalidity of the notice for ejectment no other question was pressed before the learned single judge nor has any other question been raised before us in the full bench. thus, that is the only point which requires consideration in these appeals. we would deal with the general question first and then dispose or the individual appeals.2. the relevant part of section 106 of the transfer of property act after its amendment by the said u. p. act is as follows:'in the absence of a contract or local usage to the contrary ........a.....
Judgment:

B. Dayal, J.

1. These Second Appeals have been referred to a run Bench by a learned single Judge of this Court for decision of one single question of law which arises in each one of them. All these appeals arise out of suits filed by the landlord for the ejectment of his tenant and the question for consideration is whether a thirty days notice of ejectment under Section 106 of the Transfer of Property Act as amended by U.P. Act No. XXIV of 1954 was valid in each case. Apart from the validity or invalidity of the notice for ejectment no other question was pressed before the learned single judge nor has any other question been raised before us in the Full Bench. Thus, that is the only point which requires consideration in these appeals. We would deal with the general question first and then dispose or the individual appeals.

2. The relevant part of Section 106 of the Transfer of Property Act after its amendment by the said U. P. Act is as follows:

'In the absence of a contract or local usage to the contrary ........a lease of immovable property forany other purpose shall be deemed to be a lease from month to month terminable on the part of the lessor of the lessee by thirty days notice.'

In each of these cases, the notice which was served by tne landlord on the tenant purported to say that the tenant should vacate the premises 'within thirty days of the service of notice.' The point raised which requires consideration is whether the words 'within 30 days' without any other restrictive expression do not give complete thirty days notice as required by the Act. A Division Bench of this Court took this view in Kashi Pd. Gupta v. Rup Narain, 1952 R.D. 187 (All). A contrary view was, however, taken by another Division Bench of this Court in Ahmad Ali v. Mohd. Jamal Uddin : AIR1963All581 .

3. On a plain reading of the section a tenant is entitled to get thirty days notice before his tenancy is terminated. This means that after the receipt of the notice, the tenant should have thirty days in order to make alternative arrangements and to leave the premises. The object of the notice is to give a reasonable time to the tenant to make other arrangements and to vacate the premises. After service of notice the tenancy would come to an end on the mid-night of the thirtieth day. Alter We termination of the tenancy the tenant would have no right to continue to remain in possession of the premises and consequently it is obvious that he has to vacate thepremises before that point of time. It cannot be the purpose of the law to permit the tenant to remain m illegal possession of the premises even for one moment there is no provision in law authorising a tenant to continue to remain in possession of the premises without tine consent of the landlord after the expiry of his tenancy even for the purpose of vacating the premises. As of necessity, therefore, the tenant has to vacate the premises within the period allowed to him by the law. It is his choice whether to vacate it on the last moment of the thirtieth day or a little earlier according to his convenience. The words used in the present notices asking the tenant to vacate the premises within thirty days from the date of service of the notice only fix the outer limit by which the tenant must vacate. The limit fixed is the last moment of the thirtieth day of the notice. Apart from the authorities, which will be considered hereafter, the notices given in these cases appear to be strictly according to the letter and spirit of the law.

4. The contention of the learned counsel for the tenants that this kind of notice compels the tenant to vacate the premises before the thirtieth day has expired and thereby curtails the right of the tenant to remain in possession for the full period of his tenancy does not appeal to us. To terminate the tenancy in law is one thing and to vacate the premises is another. By the service of such a notice, it is clear to the tenant that his tenancy would come to an end at 12 mid-night on the expiry or the thirtieth day and it is for the tenant to choose the convenient time to vacate the premises within that time. He cannot claim to continue in possession of the premises after the expiry of his tenancy and if the landlord warns him that he has to vacate it at his convenience before the expiry of his tenancy, he only reminds him of his duty. This does not mean that the tenancy in law is terminated at any point earlier than, the mid-night when the thirtieth day comes to an end. The legal tenancy properly terminates, in these circumstances, at that moment but the physical act of vacating the premises cannot take place at that moment of time on which the thirtieth day expires and the thirty-first day starts. The tenant has or necessity so to act that he does not remain in possession of the premises after the moment when the thirtieth day expires.

This question was considered threadbare as far back as 1835 in Sidebotham v. Holland, (1895) 1 QB 378. In that case a notice was given asking the tenant to vacate on the 19th May, when the tenancy had expired on the midnight at the end of 18th May. All the members or the Court who decided the case were of the opinion that a notice to quit on the 18th would have been a good notice. The argument, however, in that case was that the notice not having asked the tenant to vacate on the 18th May but to do so on the 19th, was invalid. Lindley L.J., in his judgment observed as follows:

'But, although a half year's notice to quit on the 18th would be correct, it does not follow that a notice to quit on the 19th, which is the anniversary of the day on which the tenancy commenced, is bad, and I am clearly of opinion that it is not.'

Lord Justice Lindley at another place observed:

'A notice to quit at the first moment of the anniversary ought to be just as good as a notice to quit on the last moment of the day before.'

This case was again considered in Crate v. Miner, (1947) 2 All ER 45. Delivering the judgment for the court, Somervell, L.J. laid down the true principle on which that case was founded in the following words:

'As a matter of language of notice 'terminating a tenancy' on the last day of a current period (which was the form used in the present case) may, apart from 1895-1 QB 378, fairly be said to mean the same thing as a notice to quit and deliver up possession on the following day, for in both cases the landlord is intimating that the last day of the current period is to be the last day of the tenancy'.

5. The matter again came up for consideration in Eastaugh v. Macpherson, (1954) 3 All ER 214. The notice in that case was as follows:

'I must ask you, therefore, to accept three months' notice to vacate the office by the date (i.e. March 31, 1954).'

The point taken was that the words 'by the date' mean before the 31st of March, 1954 started and therefore the notice was invalid. After considering the different dictionary meanings of the term, Sir Raymond Evershed, M. R. observed as follows:

'As a matter of definition, therefore, I should be inclined to think that 'by the date' ought to mean 'on or before the date'. In any case, however, this phrase must be construed in the light of the letter as a whole ....hE is, in other words, saying: 'Accept three months' notice to vacate the office on or before March 31'.

The notice so construed was held to be a valid notice.

6. A very similar notice was considered by a Division Bench of this Court in Shankar Lal v. Babu Ram, 19 All LJ 92: (AIR 1921 All 194) Mr. Justice Piggott, delivering the judgment for the Court observed as follows:

'One point taken is that, inasmuch as the law requires a notice expiring with the end of a month of the tenancy, the reference in the notice to the vacating of the house by the 30th June, 1919, rendered it invalid, as the reference should have been to the day following namely the 1st of July. There is no force in this contention, indeed it could not be seriously pressed. On the wording of the notice as a whole it is obvious that the tenant was given until the expiration of the month of the tenancy, that is to say until midnight of the 30th of June, to vacate the house and so far as this point goes the notice was unquestionably valid and in accordance with the requirements of the law'.

The notices in the present cases are exactly to the same effect and we are of the opinion that they are perfectly valid.

7. Second Appeals Nos. 774, 1451 and 4616 of 1959 and Second Appeal No. 3104 of 1960 have been filed on behalf of the defendant-tenants. Their contention is that the notices given as mentioned above are invalid. There is no force in these appeals. S. A. Nos. 914 and 1712 of 1959 and Second Appeal No. 2272 of 1960 are on behalf of the plaintiff-landlords and it is contended that the notices given were valid in law and the courts below were wrong in holding that they were invalid. As held above, this contention has force and these appeals are allowed with costs. 1962 R.D. 187 (All) is overruled.


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