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V.K. Chopra Vs. Subhash Chander - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectTenancy
CourtPunjab and Haryana High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Revision No. 5927 of 2004
Judge
Reported in(2006)143PLR345
ActsEast Punjab Urban Rent Restriction Act, 1949 - Sections 2, 13 and 13A; Companies Act - Sections 617 and 619; Indian Penal Code (IPC) - Sections 21
AppellantV.K. Chopra
RespondentSubhash Chander
Appellant Advocate Rakesh Garg, Adv.
Respondent Advocate Arun Jain, Adv.
DispositionAppeal dismissed
Cases ReferredMoti Lai Gaur v. Amrit Lai Chauhan (supra
Excerpt:
.....the contention of the petitioner regarding maintainability of the composite petition by the landlord claiming eviction of the tenant on the ground of non-payment of rent as well as on the ground of personal necessity, being a specified landlord under section 13-a of the act, was held to be not survived on the concession given by the counsel for the landlord that he gave up the ground of non-payment of rent for seeking the ejectment of the tenant. in the given situation and the evidence which is on the file, the respondent has failed to show me any law on this point that idpl is not a govt. 517. in all these authorities, it has been clearly referred that these organizations fall under the category of govt......petitioner was ordered on the ground of personal necessity being specified landlord.3. before the rent controller, the petitioner contested the petition on issue no. 1 i.e. whether the respondent was a specified landlord or not, though the issue no. 2 regarding bona fide requirement of the demised premises by the respondent for his personal use and occupation was not pressed. vide order dated 6.8.2003, the rent controller, chandigarh allowed the ejectment petition filed by the respondent. on issue no. 1 it was held that the respondent is a specified landlord. on issue no. 2, it was found that the demised premises is bona fldely required by the respondent for his personal use and occupation as well as for his other family members.4. feeling aggrieved against the aforesaid order, the.....
Judgment:

Satish Kumar Mittal, J.

1. This is tenant's revision petition against the order of ejectment passed against him in a petition filed under Section 13-A of the East Punjab Urban Rent Restriction Act, 1949 (hereinafter referred to as 'the Act').

2. In this case, the demised premises is a 7-1/2 marlas residential house situated in Sector 18, Chandigarh. The said house is owned by the respondent and his wife.The respondent-landlord field the aforesaid ejectment application being a specified landlord on the ground of personal necessity on 12.4.2001 under Section 13-A of the Act. Additionally, the landlord also sought ejectment on the ground that the tenant was in arrears of rent with effect from 1.1.1997 till the date of filing of the ejectment petition. However, the ejectment of the petitioner was ordered on the ground of personal necessity being specified landlord.

3. Before the Rent Controller, the petitioner contested the petition on issue No. 1 i.e. whether the respondent was a specified landlord or not, though the issue No. 2 regarding bona fide requirement of the demised premises by the respondent for his personal use and occupation was not pressed. Vide order dated 6.8.2003, the rent Controller, Chandigarh allowed the ejectment petition filed by the respondent. On issue No. 1 it was held that the respondent is a specified landlord. On issue No. 2, it was found that the demised premises is bona fldely required by the respondent for his personal use and occupation as well as for his other family members.

4. Feeling aggrieved against the aforesaid order, the petitioner filed Civil Revision No. 4774 of 2003. The contention of the petitioner regarding maintainability of the composite petition by the landlord claiming eviction of the tenant on the ground of non-payment of rent as well as on the ground of personal necessity, being a specified landlord under Section 13-A of the Act, was held to be not survived on the concession given by the counsel for the landlord that he gave up the ground of non-payment of rent for seeking the ejectment of the tenant. Regarding the ground of ejectment for personal requirement being a specified landlord under Section 13-A of the Act, counsel for the petitioner did not assail the finding recorded by the Rent Controller on issue No. 1 i.e. the respondent was found to be a specified landlord. The only contention raised by the counsel for the petitioner was that the Rent Controller did not record any finding with regard to issue No. 2 i.e. whether the landlord requires the premises in question for his bona fide use as residence or not Though the counsel for the tenant did not press this issue before the Rent Controller but this Court observed that the Rent Controller should have recorded the finding in terms of Section 13-A of the Act to the effect that the specified landlord requires the premises in question for his personal bona fide necessity. On that account, the order of the Rent Controller was set aside by this Court vide order dated 8.3.2004 and the matter was remanded to the Rent Controller with a direction to finally dispose of the proceedings within a period of six months from the date of appearance of the parties.

5. After the remand, the Rent Controller again passed the order of ejectment against the petitioner by the impugned order dated 14.10.2004. It appears that before the Rent Controller, only issue No. 2 was argued i.e. regarding bona fide requirement of the premises in question by the respondent for his personal use and occupation. The finding on issue No. 1 was never challenged by the petitioner at the time of hearing of Civil Revision No. 4774 of 2003. On issue No. 2, after taking into consideration the evidence led by the landlord, the Rent Controller found that the requirement of the respondent is bona fide and he requires the demised premises for his personal necessity and family members. It has been found that except the house in question, there is or was o other house owned by the respondent.

6. The petitioner-tenant has again challenged the said ejectment order by filing the present petition. Counsel for the petitioner only submits that the Rent Controller has not recorded any finding on issue No. 1 as to whether the respondent was a specified landlord or not within the meaning of Section 2(hh) of the Act. He submits that vide order dated March 8, 2004 passed in Civil Revision No. 4774 of 2003 filed by the petitioner, this Court set aside the order of the Rent Controller and remanded the matter to him to finally dispose of the proceedings within six months. It was also observed in that order that it will be open for the parties to take up all the grounds available to them in accordance with law. The counsel for the petitioner submits that without recording the finding on issue No. 1, no ejectment can be ordered under Section 13-A of the Act. Though counsel for the petitioner has not assailed the finding recorded by the Rent Controller on issue No. 2.

7. On the other hand, counsel for the respondent submitted that when the petitioner filed the earlier revision petition against the order dated August 6, 2003 passed by the Rent Controller, he did not challenge the finding on issue No. 1 recorded by the Rent Controller before this Court. In the said petition, only two points were raised, one with regard to the maintainability of the composite petition and the other not dealing with issue No. 2 i.e. the respondent-landlord requires the demised premises for his personal use and occupation. The first contention was held to be not survived because of the concession made by the counsel for the landlord. As far as on the second contention i.e. the finding regarding the requirement of demised premises by the respondent-landlord for his personal use and occupation, the order was set aside and the matter was remanded. The counsel further submitted that after the remand, even before the Rent Controller, the petitioner did not argue on issue No. 1. The arguments were addressed only on issue No. 2, and finding was recorded in favour of the landlord. Thus, now the petitioner cannot be permitted to say that no finding has been recorded by the Rent Controller on issue No. 1.

8. After hearing the counsel for the parties and going through the record of this case, I do not find any substance in the instant revision petition. In his order dated August 6, 2003, the Rent Controller recorded a specific finding against the petitioner on issue No. 1 by making the following observations:

12. I am afraid that these arguments advanced by learned Counsel for the respondent are devoid of any merit. The authorities referred to by learned Counsel for the respondent supra are distinguishable and are not applicable to the facts of the present case. In the given situation and the evidence which is on the file, the respondent has failed to show me any law on this point that IDPL is not a Govt. or a State. On other hand, I am duly convinced by the arguments of learned Counsel for the petitioner which is supported with number of authorities on this point. The petitioner has retired from Govt. Company, the affairs of which are controlled by Central Govt. Ex.P-16 page-11 of annual report 1998-99 shows that Govt. has 100% share in the company i.e., IDPL. Its accounts are being audited by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India. The salary of the employees is given by the Govt. which is evident from Clause 3.52 page-27 of the annual report 1998-99.

13. As per Section 21 of I.P.C. Clause 12, the employees of corporation as defined under Section 617 of Companies Act are public servants. Section 617 defines a Govt. Company which runs as under:

For the purpose of this Act Govt. company means any company in which not less than 51% of the paid up share capital is held by the Central Govt. or by any State Govt, and includes a company which is a subsidiary of Govt. company as thus defined.14. Similarly, Section 619 refers that the Auditor of a Govt. company shall be appointed and re-appointed by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India. So, it is evident that where the Govt. has more than 51% share in a company i.e. a Govt. company as per Section 617 of Companies Act. The petitioner has retired from IDPL in which 100 shares are of Govt. so, it is held to be a Govt. company. Once it is a Govt. company, all the employees working in the same are public servants and fall under the category of Section 2(hh) of East Punjab Urban Rent Restriction Act. There are number of authorities which I want to refer here in which employees of various organizations are held to be public servant or Govt. employees. As per authority reported in 1986(1) R.C.R. (Crl.) 46 titled as State through OBI (sic) v. K.K. Anand, of Hon'ble Apex Court it is held that employees of LIC are public servants. The petitioner comes under the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers and as per page 5.14 report 1988-99 even FCI comes under this Ministry and employees of FCI have been held specified landlord. The employees retired from private aided school are held to be employees as public servant and thus specified landlord held in authority 2003(1) R.C.R. 393 titled as Jaspal Singh v. Gurbax Singh and Anr., Employees of FCI also comes under this category decided in ( 1992-1)101 P .L.R. 2 45 titled as Om Parkash Tuli v. Vidya Bhushan Nagar, Learned Counsel for the petitioner further cited 1992 H.R.R. 165 titled as Haryana Agriculture University, Yashpal Dhir v. R.N, Gosain of Chandigarh (1996-1)112 P.L.R. 641 titled as Khushi Ram Sood v. Muneshwar Lai Kausha 1987 H.R.R. 253 titled as Fateh Chand v. Balbir Singh 2000(1) R.C.R. 68 titled as Rattan Chand v. Swaran Singh : [1977]1SCR395 titled as Sri Ram Pasricha v. Jagannath and Anr. Mathura Dass v. Smt. Ram Piar, 1982 C.L.J. (Civil) 20 Division Bench, Moti Lai Gaur v Amrit Lal Chauhan 1993 H.R.R. 57, Tarsem Singh v. Dr. Vivek Puri 2000 H.R.R. 828, Com. Harjit Singh v. H.C. Sharma 2001(2) R.C.R. 379, Parshotam Dass v. Yad Ram (2003-1)133 P.L.R. 826, Harjit Singh v. Ram Sant Narain (2003-1)133 P.L.R. 579 Ram Gopal Sharma v. Sukhdev Raj Rudra : (2001)9SCC201 , Dhanna Lai v. Kalavatibai 2001(2) R.C.R. 605 and Vimla Sharma v. Veeran Devi 2001(2) R.C.R. 517. In all these authorities, it has been clearly referred that these organizations fall under the category of Govt. and State. So, the employees of this concern are Govt. servants and specified landlords.

15. Learned Counsel for the petitioner has further submitted his arguments that petitioner if taken to be a specified landlord and can maintain his claim qua his l/4th share in the house in dispute. Regarding 3/4th share which is of his wife he cannot get benefit under the category of specified landlord Under Section 2(hh) of the Rent Act. This objection of Learned Counsel for the respondent is not tenable because the wife of the petitioner while appearing in the witness box has stated that she has no objection in case the eviction of the entire house is ordered in favour of the petitioner.

16. Even a co-owner can maintain the petition for eviction under the category of specified landlord. I get myself supported on this point by various authorities mentioned above. As per authority : [1977]1SCR395 case titled as Sri Ram Pasricha v. Jagananath, wherein it has been held that co-owner landlord is an owner. Suit by such landlord on ground of reasonable requirement of members of the family, it was held that the suit is maintainable. In the authority 1982 C.L.J. (Civil) 20 titled as Mathra Dass v. Ram Piari, of Hon'ble High Court Division Bench held that under Section 13 of East Punjab Urban Rent Restriction Act, 1949 an application for ejectment by one of the many landlords is competent. In another authority 1993 H.R.R. 57 titled as Moti Lai Gaur v. Amrit Lai Chauhan (supra), wherein it has been held that even one of the landlords can singly maintain an application for ejectment against his tenant under Section 13-A of East Punjab Urban Rent Restriction Act, 1949 under category of 2(hh). A co-owner is in fact owner of every part of composite property along with others and it cannot be said that he is only a part owner or fractional owner of the property.

17. In view of my discussion made above, the petitioner is a specified landlord Under Section 2(hh) of Rent Act. Accordingly, this issue is decided in favour of the petitioner and against the respondent.

9. The aforesaid finding recorded by the Rent Controller was not challenged by the petitioner in Civil Revision No. 4774 of 2003. The order of the Rent Controller had not dealt with the issue of requirement of demised premises by the respondent-landlord for his personal use and occupation i.e. issue No. 2, and on that account the impugned order was set aside and the matter was remanded. Though in the order dated March 8, 2004 it was observed that it will be open for the parties to raise all the points, but before the Rent Controller after the remand, t he petitioner did not raise the argument on issue No. 1. Only the arguments were raised with regard to issue No. 2 and the same was decided against the petitioner, and the ejectment order was passed. Now the petitioner cannot be permitted to say that the Rent Controller did not record any findings on issue No. 1 Even now this Court specifically asked the counsel for the petitioner about the infirmity in the finding recorded on issue No. 1 by the Rent Controller vide order dated August 6, 2003, but the learned Counsel states that when no finding has been recorded on that issue after setting aside of the order, how he can explain about any infirmity in the same. I have perused the finding recorded on issue No. 1 by the Rent Controller and do not find any infirmity in the same. In this case, the respondent-landlord retired from the service on 31.3.2001. It has come in the evidence that after the retirement when the respondent was living in he government accommodation, he had to pay the penal rent. The ejectment application has been filed by the respondent Under Section 13-A of the Act for personal necessity being specified landlord. The said provision was added in the Act with an object that the matter relating to the personal necessity of the specified landlord should be expeditiously disposed of. In this case, the matter is pending since 12.4.2001.

10. In view the aforesaid, I do not find any merit in this petition and the same is hereby dismissed.


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