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Munshi Ram Sakhuja Vs. Ram Parshad - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectTenancy
CourtDelhi High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Revision Appeal No. 748 of 1979
Judge
Reported in20(1981)DLT37; 1981(2)DRJ78
ActsDelhi Rent Control Act, 1958 - Sections 14(1)
AppellantMunshi Ram Sakhuja
RespondentRam Parshad
Advocates: S.L. Bhatia and; C.L. Sachdev, Advs
Cases ReferredDr. Gopal Dass Verma v. Dr. S.K. Bhardwaj and
Excerpt:
.....that he required the premises in dispute for residence as well as for doing practice therein. rent controller was further of the view that at best the petitioner requires one drawing-cum-dining room and three bed rooms and one guest room i. bhatia, the learned counsel for the petitioner, argued that the evidence on the record clearly goes to show that the letting purpose of the premises in dispute was residential only and there was nothing on record which may go to show that the petitioner had given the consent to the respondent to run a clinic in the premises in dispute. in order to appreciate this connection, it is necessary to notice the provisions of section 14(l)(e) of the delhi rent control act, 1958. the sad section is, as under :section 14(l) notwithstanding anything to the..........the accommodation in the barasati. (4) the parties produced oral evidence before the add). rent controller. the respondent who appeared as r.w. 1 deposed that at the inception of the tenancy he was posted at sikkim and he came back from sikkim in may, 1970 and retired from service w.e.f. 13-11-1970. he further stated that while at sikkim he had left his family to reside in the premises in dispute and immediately after his retirement he had started his medical practice in the premises. the respondent also deposed that he had told the petitioner that he required the premises in dispute for residence as well as for doing practice therein. he produced a register of patients and stated that the wife and the children of the petitioner were under his treatment in the year 1971 and he.....
Judgment:

N.N. Goswamy, J.

(1) This revision petition is directed against the judgment of the 5th Additional Rent Controller, Delhi whereby the petition of the landlord under Section 14(l)(e) read with section 25B of the Delhi Rent Control Act, 1958 was dismissed.

(2) The petitioner is the landlord of the premises No. N-62, Greater Kailash, New Delhi and the respondent is the tenant of the ground floor of the said premises. The petitioner filed a petition for ejectment under section 14(l)(e) read with section 25B of the Act on the ground of bona fide requirement. It was pleaded that the premises in dispute were let in favor of the respondent in January 1970 for residential purpose only. The present accommodation in possession of the petitioner is insufficient and consists of drawing-cum-dining, two bed rooms, store, kitchen, two toilets and a small varandah on back and front on the first floor besides barasati floor which consists of only one room along with latrine-cum bath. The family of the petitioner consists of himself, his wife, one son who is married, his wife and their child aged about one year, another son aged about 22 years who is also of marriageable age and whose marriage has been held up due to shortage of accommodation. The petitioner has got one unmarried daughter aged about 18 years who is also a student. The petitioner has also got one married daughter who resides with her husband in Delhi and visits her parents off and on.

(3) The petition was opposed by the respondent on various grounds. It was pleaded in the written statement that the respondent is a doctor. Previously he was posted in Army Medical Service and before his retirement he took the present premises for his residence as well as for his medical practice. He has been running the clinic in one room of the premises right from the beginning and to the knowledge of the petitioner and the petitioner-landlord has never objected to this use because of the agreement with him. It was further pleaded that the accommodation with the landlord on the first and second floor is more than sufficient and suitable for himself and his family members. The petitioner had converted the back varandah situated in the first floor into a regular room in which he had fitted a cooler. It was also stated that the petitioner had two rooms on the second floor and had wrongly described the accommodation in the barasati.

(4) The parties produced oral evidence before the Add). Rent Controller. The respondent who appeared as R.W. 1 deposed that at the inception of the tenancy he was posted at Sikkim and he came back from Sikkim in May, 1970 and retired from service w.e.f. 13-11-1970. He further stated that while at Sikkim he had left his family to reside in the premises in dispute and immediately after his retirement he had started his medical practice in the premises. The respondent also deposed that he had told the petitioner that he required the premises in dispute for residence as well as for doing practice therein. He produced a register of patients and stated that the wife and the children of the petitioner were under his treatment in the year 1971 and he had registered himself with the Life Insurance Corporation in 1970 itself. Shri Sardul Singh, an assistant from the office of the Life Insurance Corporation appeared as R.W.2. He proved the letters Ex. RW2/1 and Ex. RW2/2. These' letters are dated 16th and 18th July, 1970 and go to reveal that the respondent was appointed medical examiner for Life Insurance Corporation. 'Anil Kumar R.W. 3 testified that he resides in house No. N-71, Greater Kailash, New Delhi since 1972 and the respondent was his family doctor. He further deposed that the respondent was running clinic in one of the rooms of the premises in dispute. In cross-examination, he stated that in 1972 itself the respondent had treated his mother. Vijayant Singh R.W.4 also deposed that the respondent was his family doctor since 1971 and stated that his sister was treated by the respondent in the month of December 1971. The petitioner as A.W. 1 has admitted that the respondent was running his clinic in one of the rooms in the premises in dispute and had treated his wife in 1975, or 1976. From the evidence on record, the learned Additional Rent Controller came to the conclusion that the premises were being used by the respondent both for the purpose of residence and for his medical practice and on a judgment of the Supreme Court in the case of Dr. Gopal Dass Verma v. Dr.S.K. Bhardwaj and another, 1962 S.C.R. (Vol. II) 678 held that the petition under section 14(l)(e) of the Act was not maintainable.

(5) On the question of sufficiency of accommodation, the learned Addl. Rent Controller relied upon the site plans Ex. Aw 1/2 and Ex. Rw 5/1 and came to the conclusion that the petitioner was in possession of more than sufficient accommodation. It was found that the petitioner was in possession of drawing-cum-dining room, two rooms measuring 161/2'x l0'.9' and 15'x 11'.1' on the first floor along with a covered varandah on the first floor. He also found that the barasati floor had two rooms measuring 16'x 10'.9' and 15'x 10'.3'. It was also found that the unmarried daughter of the petitioner had since been married during the pendency of the petition and the family of the petitioner thereby stood reduced. The learned Addl. Rent Controller was further of the view that at best the petitioner requires one drawing-cum-dining room and three bed rooms and one guest room i.e. four or five rooms in all and the evidence reveals that he was in occupation of more than the required accommodation. Consequently, he dismissed the petition with costs.

(6) Mr. Bhatia, the learned counsel for the petitioner, argued that the evidence on the record clearly goes to show that the letting purpose of the premises in dispute was residential only and there was nothing on record which may go to show that the petitioner had given the consent to the respondent to run a clinic in the premises in dispute. In order to appreciate this connection, it is necessary to notice the provisions of section 14(l)(e) of the Delhi Rent Control Act, 1958. The sad section is, as under :-

'SECTION 14(l) Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in any other law or contract, no order or decree for the recovery of possession of any premises shall be made by any court or Controller in favor of the landlord against a tenant : Provided that the Controller may, on an application made to him in the prescribed manner, make an order for the recovery of possession of the premises on one or more of the following grounds only, namely :- (e) that the premises let for residential purposes are required bona fide by the landlord for occupation as a residence for himself or for any member of his family dependent on him, if he is the owner thereof, or for any person for whose benefit the premises are held and that the landlord or such person has no other reasonably suitable residential accommodation : Explanationn .- For the purpose of this, 'premises let for residential purposes' include any premises such which having been let for use as a residence are, without the consent of the landlord, used incidentally for commercial or other purposes'.

(7) Admittedly the tenancy in the present case was oral and there was no written lease-deed. From the evidence on record, which has been mentioned above, it cannot be disputed that the respondent has been running a clinic In the premises for his medical practice. This is, in fact, admitted by the petitioner himself in his evidence and the petitioner has also admitted that his wife was treated by the respondent somewhere in 1975 or 1976 though the record of the respondent shows that the family of the petitioner was also treated in 1971. The entire evidence read, leads to the only conclusion that the respondent has been using one room in the premises for his clinic right from the beginning and the said user has never been objected to by the petitioner. Even in the present case, the petitioner has not raised any objection to the user of the premises for clinical purpose by the respondent. Assuming for the sake of arguments that the premises were let only for residential purposes, the same have been used to the knowledge of the petitioner incidental for the purpose of clinic also. In the circumstances, this case is fully covered by the judgment in Dr. Gopal Dass Verma v. Dr. S.K. Bhardwaj and another, referred to above. It was held in that case that where the premises are let for residential purposes and it is shown that they are used by the tenant incidentally for commercial, professional or other purposes with the consent of landlord, the landlord could not be entitled to ask the tenant even if he proves that he needs the premises bona fide for his personal use because the premises have, by their user, ceased to be premises let for residential purpose alone. The Supreme Court in that case was concerned with the provisions of section 13(l)(e) of the Punjab Act which are exactly the same as section 14(l)(e) of the Delhi Act. I am, thereforee, of the opinion that the Additional Rent Controller has no right in holding that the petition under section 14(l)(e) of the Act was not maintainable.

(8) Even on merits the Additional Rent Controller has found as a fact that the petitioner is having at least 4 or 5 rooms besides the drawing-cum- dining room and other amenities in his possession. The sizes of the bed rooms, as mentioned above, show that all the four bed rooms, in occupation of the petitioner, are fairly large. Besides these four bed rooms the petitioner is also having glazed varandah which is also being used as a bed room. The entire family of the petitioner, at present, after the marriage of his daughter consists of himself, his wife, his married son, his wife and a child and an unmarried son. The Additional Rent Controller was right in holding that at best the requirement of the petitioner was one drawing-cum-dining room, three bed rooms and one guest room i.e. 4 or 5 rooms in all. The petitioner is admittedly in possession of more than necessary accommodation and as such is not entitled to claim any further accommodation. The findings of the Addl. Rent Controller are based on evidence and I do not find any infirmity in the same.

(9) For the reasons recorded above, there is no merit in this petition which is dismissed with no order as to costs.


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