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Hari Rajkisbore Vs. Raj Kumar - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectTenancy
CourtDelhi High Court
Decided On
Case NumberSecond Appeal No. 186 of 1975
Judge
Reported in1979RLR103
ActsSlum Areas (Improvement and Clearance) Act, 1956 - Sections 19
AppellantHari Rajkisbore
RespondentRaj Kumar
Advocates: G.N. Aggarwal and; Anil Kumar, Advs
Excerpt:
- - (7) counsel for the tenant has laid a good deal of stress on the word 'any' occurring before the word 'suit' and 'decree' in s......is exhausted by filing a petition. all that the statute requires is that before bringing 'any suit or proceeding for obtaining any decree or order for the eviction of a tenant from any building or land in a slum area' a person must obtain permission of the competent authority in writing. but the statute does not requite that for every proceeding there must be obtained a fresh permission. it is true 'any' is a word of very wide meaning and ordinarily excludes limitation or qualification. all suits and proceedings for obtaining a decree or order for the eviction of a tenant in slum area are comprehended within the terms of s. 19 but the statute does not say that for each proceeding each time permission must be obtained. in my view such a construction involves writing words into the.....
Judgment:

Avadh Behari, J.

(1) This is a tenant's appeal. The appellant Hari Raj Kishore is a tenant of the respondent-landlord Raj Kumar. The tenanted premises consist of a room with common latrine in house No. 3326, Kucha Kashgiri, Bazar Sita Ram, Delhi.

(2) The landlord applie for permission of the Competent Authority under S. 19 of the Slum Areas (Improvement and Clearance) Act, By order dated 29 9.72 the Authority granted permission. The landlord brought an eviction petition against the tenant on 23.12.73 on the ground of nonpayment of rent. The Controller made an order requiring the tenant to deposit the arrears of rent within one month and on his doing so he held that the eviction petition will stand dismissed. The tenant deposited the arrears of rent. The eviction petition accordingly stood dismissed.

(3) The tenant again committed default in the payment of rent. He fell into arrears again. The landlord filed another petition on 12.3.74 complaining of second default by the tenant in the payment of rent.

(4) The tenant raised a preliminary objection. He said that the second petition was incompetent because the landlord had not obtained a fresh permission from the competent authority after the decision of the first eviction case. The Rent Controller held that no new permission of the competent authority was required for filing the second eviction petition. He rejected the preliminary objection.

(5) Against the order of the controller the tenant appealed. The tribunal dismissed the appeal. Now there is an appeal to. this court.

(6) The sole contention raised by counsel for the tenant in this appeal is that before bringing the second eviction petition it was obligatory of the landlord to obtain fresh permission of the Competent Authority under s. 19 of the Slum Act.

(7) Counsel for the tenant has laid a good deal of stress on the word 'any' occurring before the word 'suit' and 'decree' in S. 19. He says that whenever a suit or a proceeding is to be brought against a tenant the landlord must obtain prior permission of the competent authority. The word 'any' counsel submitted, means 'every' or all and thereforee every time an eviction petition is brought by a landlord against a tenant in respect of premises situated in slum area permission of the competent authority must be obtained. He further submitted that if there is any ambiguity in the statute it must be resolved in favor of the tenant for whose benefit the Slum Act has been enacted. He referred me to the preamble of the Act which says that the Slum Act was passed 'for the protection of tenants' in slum areas from eviction.

(8) At the very outset the question Is : What happened to the permission which the landlord obtained when he brought the first petition on 23.12.1073 Counsel says that permission was exhausted as soon as the first eviction petition was decided. I do not find in the statute any warrant for this submission. he state does not say that permission is exhausted by filing a petition. All that the statute requires is that before bringing 'any suit or proceeding for obtaining any decree or order for the eviction of a tenant from any building or land in a slum area' a person must obtain permission of the competent authority in writing. But the statute does not requite that for every proceeding there must be obtained a fresh permission. It is true 'any' is a word of very wide meaning and ordinarily excludes limitation or qualification. All suits and proceedings for obtaining a decree or order for the eviction of a tenant in slum area are comprehended within the terms of s. 19 But the statute does not say that for each proceeding each time permission must be obtained. In my view such a construction involves writing words into the statute that are not there. If the legislature had intended to say so, it could have expressed that intention in plain language.

(9) thereforee once the landlord has obtained permission he can bring successive suits or proceedings to obtain a decree or order for the eviction of the tenant. He is not required to approach the competent authority again if, for example, the first suit or proceeding is dismissed. If the first suit or proceeding succeeds and the tenant is evicted that is the end of the matter. No question of fresh permission arises. But take a case where in first proceeding the tenant is not evicted. Has the landlord to approach the competent authority over again No He can with the permission already in his hands bring a second suit or proceeding for obtaining a decree or order for the eviction of the tenant. The eviction of the tenant is the end. The suit or proceeding is the means. No suit or proceeding can be instituted without obtaining the previous permission of the competen authority in writing. This is the bar created by the statute. But once permission is granted the bar is removed The door is opened ; to the landlord for launching eviction proceedings. The bar once removed is for all times in respact of that tenant against whom permission has been granted. Separately and individually for each eviction case permission is not required if permission has once been obtained against the tenant.

(10) Counsel then-submitted that object of the Act is to protect the tenant end if there is a change in the circumstances of the tenant it will be great injustice if the law did not require the landlord to obtain parmission for every suit or proceeding for eviction. For this submission, as lor the previous one. I find no words in the statute to support such a construction. It is true that circumstances of a tenant can change. But the state does not require the landlord to go to the competent authority every time there is a change in the circumstances As I have said, the statute operates as a bar to the institution of a suit or proceeding for obtaining a decree or order for the eviction of a tenant. The bar is removed by the grant of permission by the competent authority. At that stage the competent authority has to enquire into the means of the tenant. But thereafter the competent authority is not concerned with the changa of circumstances of the tenant. The circumstances of a tenant can change even during the pendency of the first suit or proceeding. But it cannot be argued with any show of a reason that with the change of circumstances the proceeding must come to a stop and the matter must be reviewed by competent authority. It; In my view the words of the statute are plain. Permission once obtained is not exhausted till the goal is reached. And the goal is the eviction of the tenant.


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