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Ram Dev Vs. Chaman Lal - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectTenancy
CourtDelhi High Court
Decided On
Case NumberSecond Appeal No. 9 of 1969
Judge
Reported in7(1971)DLT194
ActsDelhi Rent Control Act, 1958 - Sections 9(4)
AppellantRam Dev
RespondentChaman Lal
Advocates: K.C. Mittal and; H.S. Wadhwa, Advs
Excerpt:
.....pay rent tothe landlord as directed in his judgment. la those circumstances, both the additional rent controller and the tribunal rightly took the view that thee evidenceof the architects did not furnish any criterion for fixing the standard rent of the premises in dispute after taking that view, while the additional rent controller observed that in th- absence of reliable evidence, he could not fix that standard rent, and rejected the, plea of standard rent, the tribunal proceeded to fix the standard rent under section 9(4) of the act. 70.00, per month thus, instead of declining to fix the standard rent on the ground that the parties did not adduce reliable evidence as was done by the additional rent controller. title course adopted by him was quite in accord mce with the provision in..........1968, in rent control appeal no. 583 of 1967, modifying an order of shri p. c. saini, additional rent controller, delhi dated february 20, 1967, whereby he rejected the plea of standard rent raised by the tenant but directed the tenant to pay the agreed rent of rs.70.00 per month. (2) the respondent herein, chaman lal, filed two applications, one after the other, for recovery of possession of the premises in dispute n'o. 4/c/10, situated in rajindar nagar new delhi, which is under the tenancy of the appellant herein at rs. 70/ - per month the premises n questions consists of one room with open courtyard shown in red in the plan filed by the respondent herein. in the application no. 923 of 1-64 which was filed earlier, tie respondent herein saught eviction on five. grounds provided in.....
Judgment:

T.V.R. Tatachari, J.

(1) Ram Dev, a tenant has filed this second Appeal against the order of Shri Mohan Lal Jain, Rent Control Tribunal Delhi, dated September 19, 1968, in Rent Control Appeal No. 583 of 1967, modifying an order of Shri P. C. Saini, Additional Rent Controller, Delhi dated February 20, 1967, whereby he rejected the plea of standard rent raised by the tenant but directed the tenant to pay the agreed rent of Rs.70.00 per month.

(2) The respondent herein, Chaman Lal, filed two applications, one after the other, for recovery of possession of the premises in dispute N'o. 4/C/10, situated in Rajindar Nagar New Delhi, which is under the tenancy of the appellant herein at Rs. 70/ - per month The premises n questions consists of one room with open courtyard shown in red in the plan filed by the respondent herein. In the application No. 923 of 1-64 which was filed earlier, tie respondent herein saught eviction on five. grounds provided in clauses (a), (t) (g) and (k) of the proviso !o sub-section (i) of section 14 of the Delhi Rent Control Act, 1958, while in the second application No. 452 of 1965, he sought eviction on the grounds provided in clauses (b) and (h) of the a foresaid proviso. The appellant herein (tenant) resisted both the applications. He also raised a plea of standard rent in reply to an application made by the respondent herein under section 15(2) of the Act. By-an order, dated February 20, 1967, the Additional Rent Controller held that none of the grounds for eviction was established. But, on the plea of standard rent, he held that there was no evidence on which he could determine the standard rent of the premises in dispute, and that since the onus of proving the standard rent was on the tenant which he had failed to discharge, he could not but reject the plea of standard rent raised by the tenant in defense in his reply to the application mid- by the landlord under section 15(2) of the Act. He observed that as a result of his finding the tenant shall have to pay arrears of re it at the agreed rate of Rs 701- per month and that he should pay the difference between the agreed rent of Rs. 70.00, per month and the interim rent fixed at Rs. 50.00, per month. The Additional Rent Controller also held that the tenant would be entitled to Rs. 70.00, on account of repairs found to have been effected by him. In the result, he dismissed both that applications for eviction as well as the plea of standard rent, but declared that the tenant should pay rent tothe landlord as directed in his judgment.

(3) The landlord, Chaman Lal, did not file any appeal against the said order. The tenant, Rim Dev preferred an appeal. Rent Control Appeal No. 583 of 1967, to the Court ofthe Rent Control Tribunal, Delhi, so far as the fixation of the standard rent was concerned. By order, dated September 19, 1968 the Rent Control Tribunal, fixed the standard rent at the agreed rate of rent of Rs. 70.00, per month, and thus modified to that extent the order of the Additional Rent Coitroller. It is against that order of the Rent Control Tribunal that the present Second Apoeal has been filed by the tenant. Ram Dev.

(4) As regards the fixation of standard rent each party had examined an Architect. The Architect, Shri Sham Dass, examined on behalf of the tenant, estimated the cost of construction including the market value of the land at the time of construction at Rs. 1, 095.00-, while the Architect, Shri R. R. Nagpal, examined on behalf of the landlord, assessed the cost of construction including the market value at Rs. 10, 282.92 Paise. While Shri Sham Dass estimiated the cost of construction of the premises at Rs. 750.00, Shri Nagpal estimated the cost of construction at Rs. 2,932.92 Paise. But, as regards the market value of the land, Shri Sham Oass fixed that same at Rs 25/per sq. yd., while Shri Nagpal fixed the value at Rs. 175.00, par sq. yd. While the two Architects based their estimates of the cast of construction on their respective calculations, their estimate of the value of the land was just arbitrary and without any basis or data. As regards the date of constrcution of the premises in dispute. Shri Sham Diss did not make any mention in his report, and Shri Nagpal observed in his report that the building seemed to have been constructed in 1950. There was thus no definite evidence as regards that date of construction of the premises. la those circumstances, both the Additional Rent Controller and the Tribunal rightly took the view that thee evidenceof the Architects did not furnish any criterion for fixing the standard rent of the premises in dispute After taking that view, while the Additional Rent Controller observed that in th- absence of reliable evidence, he could not fix that standard rent, and rejected the, plea of standard rent, the tribunal proceeded to fix the standard rent under section 9(4) of the Act. In doing so the tribunal after observing that there was no evidence on record even under section 9(4) of the Act, and as such the standard, rent of the premises in dispute could not be fixed having regard to the rents payable for similar accommodation situated in the same locality, or the standard rent fixed for similar premises in the same locality proceeded to state that the premises in dupute was shop of that size of 12.61 x 8/ situated on the main road of old Rajindar Nagar, a busy and important locality, and having regard to the situation, condition and locality of the said premises, he would fix the standard rent thereof at the agreed rate of rent of Rs.70.00, per month Thus, instead of declining to fix the standard rent on the ground that the parties did not adduce reliable evidence as was done by the Additional rent Controller. the Tribunal fixed the standard rent acting under the provision in section 9(4) of the Act.

(5) Shri K. C. Mittal, learned counsel for the appellant contended that when the Tribunal was of the opinion that there was no evidence adduced by the parties, it should have declined to fix the standard rent-as done by the Additional Rent Controller. There is Do substance in the said contention When the tenant raised the plea of standard rent in defense to the application under section 15 (-) of the Act, the standard rent had to be fixed by the Controller in accordance with the provisions in section 6 of the Act, and if it was not possible to fix standard rent under the said section, the same had to be fixed in accordance with the provision in section 9(4) of the Act. After holding that there was no evidence on the basis of which the standard rent could be fixed, the Addit:onal Rent Controller should have proceeded to consider the fixation of the standard rent in accordance with the provision in section 9(4), but he did not do so. It is common ground that for fixation of standard rent in the present case under section 6, it is essential that there should be evidence of the date of construction of the premises in dispute, its cost of construction and the market price of the land compried in the premises on the date of the commencement of the construction. Such evidence was not adduced by the parties, and. thereforee it was not possible to fix the standard rent in accordance with the provisions in section 6. In such a situation, section 9(4) of the Act provides that 'WHEREfor any reason it is not possible to determine the standard rent of any premises on the principles set fo;thin section 6, the Controller may fix such rent as would be reasonable having regard to the situation, locality and condition of the premises and the amenities provided therein and where there are similar or nearly similar premises in the locality having regard also to the standerd rent payable in respect of such premises, Thus, when the Additional Rent Controllar found that it was not possible to datermine the standard reat on the principles set forth under section 6, he should have proceeded to fix the standard rent on the principle set out in section 9(4). As he did not do so, the Tribunal rightly proceeded to fix the standard rent under section 9(4) which the Additional Rent Controller should have himself done. Section 9(4) provides that in fixing the standard rent under that sub-section, regard should be had- (a) to the situation, locality and condition of the premises and the amenities provided therein; and (b) where there are similar or nearly similar premises in the locality, regard should also be had to the standard rent payable in respect of such premises. In the present case, no evidence was adduced by the parties regarding any standard rent payable in respect of premises which are similar or nearly similar premises in the locality. thereforee, the Tribunal, after observing that there was no evidence on record under section 6 of the Act to fix the standard rent having regard to the rents payable for similar accommodation situated in the same locality of the standard rent fixed for similar premises in the same locality, proceeded to fix the standard rent having regard to the other criterion mentioned in section 9(4), viz , the situation locality and cmdition of the premises and the amenities provided therein. As no other evidence wis available he considered that it would be reasonible to dx the standard rent at the agreed rate of Ks 70.00 per month. title course adopted by him was quite in accord mce with the provision in section 9(4)

(6) For the above reasons, the Second Appeal fail? and is dismissed, but, in the circumstances, without costs.


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