1. This second appeal has arisen out of a suit instituted, by Prem Chand respondent for the ejectment of Mul Raj petitioner from a certain vacant site after allowing him time to remove the materials of certain structures erected by him on the site and for Rs. 60/- as arrears of rent at Rs. 12/- per mensem.
2. The suit was contested by the defendant on all possible grounds. He raised the preliminary objection that the suit was not competent in view of the provisions of the Punjab Rent Restrictions Act III of 1949, but this was decided against him as a preliminary issue, and the finding of the trial Court was upheld in revision by this Court, and on the merits he disputed the validity of the notice of ejectment and claimed that he had built certain structures on the site with the consent of the plaintiff who was therefore liable to compensate him on this account.
Although it was found by the trial Court that the value of the structures erected by the defendant was Rs. 533/-, it was found against him that the structures were erected without the plaintiffs consent and that the latter was not liable to pay compensation and the validity of the ejectment notice was upheld. The result was that the plaintiff's claim for ejectment of the defendant and for the recovery of Rs. 60/- as arrears of rent was decreed and this decree was upheld by the Court of first appeal.
3. The only point raised on behalf of the defendant in the second appeal was the validity of the notice of ejectment. The site in suit was leased by the plaintiff to the defendant by a deed dated 29-10-1949 the tenancy being for a period of 11 months starting on 1-11-1949 after which it became a monthly tenancy. A notice of ejectment was served by the plaintiff on the defendant on 15-11-1952 the terms of which required him to vacate the premises by 30-11-1952.
4. Regarding the validity of the notice, the learned counsel for the appellant relied on the provisions of Section 106. Transfer of Property Act which provides for fifteen days' notice expiring with he end of a month of the tenancy, and Section 110 which provides that where the time limited by a lease of immovable property is expressed as commencing from a particular day, in computing that time such day shall be excluded.
It is claimed that the effect of these provisions is that since the tenancy in the present case began on 1-11-1949, i.e., the first day of a month, the end of any particular month of tenancy must be the first day and in order to be a valid notice the notice in the present case should have called on the tenant to vacate the premises not by the 30th of November but by the 1st of December 1952. Reliance was placed on the decision of their Lordships of the Privy Council in -- 'Benoy Krishna Das v. Salsiccioni', AIR 1932 PC 279 (A) -- in which it was held that a lease from 1-6-1921 for a term of four years ends on the midnight of 1-6-1925 and a notice given by the lessee 0:1 1-2-1928, for leaving the premises on 1-3-1928 is a notice expiring with the end of a month of the tenancy.
Reliance was also placed on the decision of Kapur J. and myself in -- 'Bawa Singh v. Kundan. Lal', AIR 1952 Punj 422 (B), in which we followed the above Privy Council decision and held that a notice of ejectment given on 12-9-1950 and requiring the tenant to vacate the premises on or before 1-10-1950 was a valid notice.
5. On the other hand it is argued by the learned counsel for the respondent that the Transfer of Property Act is not in force in the Punjab, and that since in the present case the monthly rent was being paid for the period ending each month on the last day of that month, the notice should not be held to be invalid because it required the tenant to vacate the premises by the 30th of November instead of the 1st of December. My attention was invited to the following remarks of Tek Chand J. in 'Kanwar Bam v. Ghugi,' AIR 1928 Lah 148 (C):
'Now it is well known that the Transfer of Property Act is not in force in the Punjab and though the Courts of this province sometimes follow the equitable principles of common law which have been embodied in certain sections of the Act, it has been held over and over again that the technical- rules contained in it cannot be relied upon by any litigant in this province. Reference may in this connection be made to 'Teja Singh v. Kalyan Das Chet Ram,' AIR 1925 Lah 575 (D), and 'Dula Singh v. Bela Singh,' AIR 1925 Lah 92 (E).'
6. None of these cases deals with the question of whether a notice of ejectment was a valid notice, but I should be very reluctant in view of the general principles laid down In these and other cases to hold that a notice of ejectment served in time on the tenant in accordance with Section 106, Transfer of Property Act, was invalid simply on the ground that it did not strictly comply with the provisions of Section 110 by omitting to include the first day of the following month as the end of the month of the tenancy.
It certainly cannot be said that because in the case of 'Bawa Singh v. Kundan Lal (B), Kapur J. and I held that a notice which did comply with the provisions of Section 110 was a valid notice, we either held or implied that a notice like the one in the present cage would be an invalid notice in this State, and in fact the point was never considered at all. In the course of his judgment Kapur J. also cited the observations of Lindley L. J. in 'Sidebothum v. Holland', (1896) 1 KB 378 (P), which are as follows:
The validity of a notice to quit ought not to turn on the splitting of a straw. Moreover, If hypercriticisms are to be indulged in a notice to quit at the first moment of the anniversary ought to be the last moment of the day before. But such subticties ought to be and are disregarded as out of place.'
7. Neither party has been able to cite any decision on a case in point from a State or province in which the Transfer of Property Act is not in force, and on the whole I am of the opinion that the notice in the present case ought not to be held to be invalid, and the plaintiff nonsuited, simply because it did not strictly comply with the technical provisions of Section 120 of the Act. I aacordingly dismiss the appeal with coats.