1. Banwari Lal landlord-respondent had filed an application for ejectment of his tenant Darbari lal in the Court of the Rent controller, Sirsa. Hari Chand son of Darbari Lal tenant was also impleaded as respondent alleging him to be the sub-tenant. The ejectment was sought on the ground of subletting. The Rent Controller vide his order dated 5th October, 1976. Passed on order of ejectment against the tenant. Feeling aggrieved against the said order. Darbari Lal tenant filed an appeal under the Haryana Urban (control of Rent and Eviction) Act (hereinafter to be referred as the Act) before the Appellate Authority. Hari Chand, the alleged sub-tenant, was impleaded as respondent in the appeal. During the pendency of the appeal, Darbari Lal tenant died on 8th Nov., 1976. Therefore, his son Hari Chand, who was already a party as an alleged subtenant, and his another son Gobind ram as well as Smt. Bachni widow of a predeceased so of Darbari lal made an application for being appointed as successors of the deceased tenant Darbari lal. In the application filed by them, it was settled that they were residing with the deceased and, therefore, they come within the definition of the tenant as defined in S. 2(h) of the Act. This application was contested on behalf of the landlord respondent.
2. The Appellate Authority, after recording the evidence of the parties, came to the conclusion that Hari Chand and Govind Ram were living separately from Darbari Lal deceased tenant and their business is also separate from him and consequently dismissed their application for impleading Hari Chand and Gobind Ram as legal representatives of Darbari Lal deceased. As regards Smt. Bachni, it was found that she being the widow of Darbari Lal's deceased son was residing with him and therefore, was entitled to be appointed as legal representative and therefore, an order appointive of Darbari Lal was passed. Feeling aggrieved against this order, Hari Chand and Gobind Ram have filed the present revision petition in this Court.
3. Learned counsel for the petitioner vehemently contended that as a matter of fact the petitioners are entitled to be impleaded as legal representatives of the deceased tenant Darbari Lal under Order 22, Rule 3 of the Civil P. C. and they do not claim any right under the definition of the term 'tenant' in Section 2(h) of the Act which is to the following effect:-
''tenant' means any person by whom or on whose account rent is payable for a building or rented land and includes a tenant continuing in possession after the termination of his tenancy and in the event of such person's death, such of his heirs are mentioned in the Schedule appended to this Act and who were ordinarily residing with him at the time of his death, but does not include a person placed in occupation of a building or rented land by its tenant except with the written consent of the landlord or person to whom the collection of rent or fees in a public market, cart-stand or slaughter-house or of rents for shops has been framed out or leased by municipal, town or notified area committee.'
4. In support of his contention, he referred to Kishan Kumar v. Baldev Singh, (1974) 76 Pun LR 468. Reference was also made to Damadi Lal v. Parashram, AIR 1976 SC 2229 for the proposition that the statutory tenancy was heritable and therefore, the appeal could not be dismissed as having been abated. On the other hand, the learned counsel for the respondents contended that the statutory tenancy is heritable for a limited purpose. Persons covered under the definition under Section 2(h) of the Act are only entitled to claim themselves to be the tenant on the death of the original tenant and that too if the premises in dispute are residential buildings. According to the learned counsel, admittedly, the premises in dispute are non-residential, therefore, the petitioners are not entitled to be impleaded as heirs of the deceased tenant. In support of his contention, he made reference to Ganpat v. Sashikant, AIR 1978 SC 955; Vithal v. Shamrao, AIR 1979 SC 1121 and Haji Mohammad Din v. Narain Dass. (1979) 1 Ren CJ 129 : (AIR 1979 Delhi 186)(FB).
5. I have heard the learned counsel for the parties at great length and I am of the considered opinion that at this stage this Court is not called upon to decide whether the petitioners or Smt. Bachmi can claim themselves to be the tenant because of the definition as given in Section 2(h) of the Act or not. As a matter of fact, the premises in dispute being non-residential the said definition of the 'tenant' may not be of any use to the petitioners and Smt. Bachni. However, as stated earlier, that matter need not be decided at this stage nor does it arise for the time being. The only short question is that whether the petitioners can be impleaded as legal representatives of the deceased tenant Darbari lal under Order 22, Rule 3 of the Civil P. C. or not. In Kishan Kumar's case (supra) it had been held that the legal representatives of a statutory tenant are not be ought on the record as statutory tenants but as legal representatives of the deceased statutory tenant because the right of the landlord to proceed with the appeal with a view to obtain possession of his premises from the deceased statutory survived under Order 22, Rule 4 read with Rule 11 of the Civil P. C. Even if the proceedings under the East Punjab urban Rent Restriction Act are not strictly governed by the said provisions of the Civil P. C., under Section 141 of the code, the said Provisions can be made applicable to the proceedings before the Rent Controller and the Appellate Authority under the Rent Restriction Act, as they are Civil Proceedings. It cannot, therefore, be said that the provisions of Order 22 are not applicable to the petition before the Rent Controller or the appeal before the Appellate Authority under that Act. All the authorities cited by the leaned counsel for the respondent do not deal with this aspect of the case and therefore, are of not much help.
6. It maybe made clear that these legal representatives as defined under Section 2 11) of the Civil P. C. can be brought on the record for a limited purpose. They will step in the shoes of the deceased tenant and will defend the case on the pleas already taken by their predecessor.
7. Moreover, there is another aspect of the matter as well. Smt. Bachni has already been allowed to be impleaded as legal representative of the deceased tenant. That part of the order was never challenged by the landlord-respondent. If Smt. Bachni has been allowed to be impleaded, I do not find any reason that why the two sons of the deceased-tenant can also not be impleaded along with her. I do not think that any prejudice would be caused to the landlord incase they are also allowed to be impleaded as legal representative along with Smt. Bachni. On the other hand, it is likely to avoid subsequent litigation.
8. As a result of the above discussion, the order of the Appellate Authority is set aside and it is directed that the petitioners i. e. Hari Chand and Gobind Ram may also impleaded along with Smt. Bachni as legal representatives of the deceased tenant Darbari lal without any prejudice to the rights of the landlord which he may claim under the statute. The parties, through their counsel, are directed to appear in the Court of the Appellate Authority, Sirsa, on 7-9-1981.
9. Order accordingly.