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Mukanlal Vs. State of Rajasthan - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectTenancy;Constitution
CourtRajasthan High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Writ Petn. No. 918 of 1969
Judge
Reported inAIR1972Raj314; 1972()WLN387
ActsRajasthan Premises (Control of Rent and Eviction) Act, 1950- Sections 2; Constitution of India - Article 14
AppellantMukanlal
RespondentState of Rajasthan
Appellant Advocate J.P. Joshi, Adv.
Respondent Advocate S.K. Tewari, Dy. Govt. Adv.
DispositionPetition dismissed
Cases ReferredEasudcv v. Damodar Lal
Excerpt:
.....and notification is valid.;the act can be applied only to those towns where there is dearth of accommodation and the rents are going high because of the dearth of accommodation and the tenants are put to harassment with a view to charge more tents because of the conditions prevalent in the town. with this difference in the facts, i cannot accept the argument advanced by learned counsel for the petitioner that the power given to the state government by section 2(2) of the act is naked and unfettered. - - damodar lal, air 1971 raj 115 held that the object of enacting this law was to put a check on the profiteering tendencies on the part of the landlords and, therefore, the legislature have provided for controlling rents as well as the eviction of the tenants. in that connection,..........j.1. sumerpur is a town in the district of pali with a population of about 10,000 persons. the state government by its notification dated 10th of december, 1968, while exercising its power under section 2 extended the provisions of the rajasthan premises (control of rent & eviction) act. 1950 (hereinafter called the act) to the town of sumerpur from the date the said notification was published in the official gazette.2. petitioner who is a resident of sumerpur has challenged this notification, inter alia, on the ground that section 2 1(2) of the act confers naked and arbitrary powers on the government to apply the provisions of the act to any town in the state and, therefore, this power is discriminatory and violates the guarantee embodied in article 14 of the constitution. while.....
Judgment:
ORDER

V.P. Tyagi, J.

1. Sumerpur is a town in the District of Pali with a population of about 10,000 persons. The State Government by its notification dated 10th of December, 1968, while exercising its power under Section 2 extended the provisions of the Rajasthan Premises (Control of Rent & Eviction) Act. 1950 (hereinafter called the Act) to the town of Sumerpur from the date the said notification was published in the official Gazette.

2. Petitioner who is a resident of Sumerpur has challenged this notification, inter alia, on the ground that Section 2 1(2) of the Act confers naked and arbitrary powers on the Government to apply the provisions of the Act to any town in the State and, therefore, this power is discriminatory and violates the guarantee embodied in Article 14 of the Constitution. While comparing the population of the towns of Sojat. Sadri and Bali which are three important towns situate in the District of Pali, the petitioner contends that the application of the provisions of the Act to Sumerpur definitely violates Article 14 of the Constitution, and it is, (therefore, prayed that Section 2 (2) of the Act be declared ultra vires of the Constitution and the notification issued by the State Government while exercising power under Section 2 of the Act be quashed.

3. A reply has been filed on behalf of the State stating that Sumerpur Is a fast growing important Mandi and commercial centre and it is also a commercial centre for agricultural implements and tractor parts, etc. There is great dearth of housing accommodation In Sumerpur town as compared to Soiat, Sadri end Bali and there is great pressure on the house accommodation in Sumerpur, the landlords do indulge themselves in sky rocketing the rents and harassing the tenants. It is contended that the Act has been enacted by the Legislature to check the above mentioned evils and looking to all these conditions it was found necessary for the State Government to extend the provisions of the Act to the town of Sumerpur. It is, therefore, prayed that the petitioner's petition be dismissed with costs.

4. The ground of attack on the vires of Section 2 (2) as mentioned in the petition Is that the provisions of the impugned Act have not been applied to the towns of Spjat, Sadri and Bali in the District of Pali where the population is more than the population of Sumerpur. According to the petitioner, the population of Sojat is 16,048, of Sadri 12,595 and of Bali about 10,000. These figures have been given from the census report of 1961. The petitioner has also stated in his petition that in comparison to Sojat. Sadri and Bali towns there is no dearth of housing accommodation at Sumerpur town. According to him, the number of houses in proportion to the population are also not less than that what are found in the aforesaid three towns but no details about these facts have been given by the petitioner. This fact is, however, emphatically denied by the respondents and it has been contended that looking to the growth of Sumerpur, which has become a commercial centre and also a centre for the agricultural implements and tractor parts, dearth of housing accommodation is felt and the landlords have started exploiting the situation by increasing the rent exorbitantly and, therefore, the Government thought it proper to extend the protection as is given by the Act to the tenants of Sumerpur town.

5. Except the figures about the population no other details have been provided by the petitioner to compare whether all these four towns, namely, Soiat, Sadri, Bali and Sumerpur are similarly situated in all respects regarding the availability of accommodation, the rate of rents of the houses prevalent in these towns and other similar matters which may go to show that protection as given by the Act was necessary to be extended to the residents of Sumerpur town. In the absence of proper data and material this Court cannot find out whether any discrimination has been caused by applying the provisions of the Act to Sumerpur town alone in the District of Pali leaving the towns of Sojat, Sadri and Bali.

6. While placing reliance on the judgment of this Court in Madhosingh v. State of Rajasthan, AIR 1954 Raj 197 learned counsel for the petitioner urged that the power conferred on the State Government to apply the provisions of the Act to any town in the State without furnishing a guideline for the State Government to act in that behalf is a naked power which should be declared as violating the guarantee of equality before law as enshrined in Article 14 of the Counstitution. Learned counsel further submits that the preamble of the Act does not throw any light as to how the State Government should function while exercising its power under Section 2 (2) of the Act and, therefore, the provisions of Section 2 (21 are hit by Article 14 of the Constitution.

7. In another context this question whether any guideline is provided by the provisions of the Act to the State Government for exercising its power thereunder can be read in the provisions of the Act or not the learned Judge in Easudcv v. Damodar Lal, AIR 1971 Raj 115 held that the object of enacting this law was to put a check on the profiteering tendencies on the part of the landlords and, therefore, the legislature have provided for controlling rents as well as the eviction of the tenants. The question that was raised before the learned Judge in that case was that the houses constructed after the year 1951 were saved from the operation of the Act for a period of seven years. This provision was, therefore, challenged as being violative of Article 14 of the Constitution. In that connection, the learned Judge had the occasion to study the provisions of the Act as a whole as well as its preamble. It was observed that the preamble in this particular Act is not an expression so large and extensive in its import which may throw sufficient light to read the real objective with which this enactment was passed by the legislature. But the duty of the Court does not rest there only. The Court should look to the provisions of the Act as a whole and notwithstanding the phrases of less extensive import of the preamble if the true intention can be gathered from the provisions of the Act the Court should try to find it out. The learned Judge after having gone through the entire Act and the preamble could find the indications of legislative intendment for which the said Act was enacted by the legislature.

8. I have also gone through the provisions of the entire Act and I find that the Act has been enacted with a view to extend protection to the tenants from the tendencies of the landlords to make more profit out of the agonies of the inhabitants who find dearth of accommodation in the town because of the steady growth of a town which does not have sufficient houses to accommodate the growing population. This is an ameliorating measure taken by the State Legislature to protect the poor tenants from being exploited by the landlords. Simply because the Act has not been made applicable to the other towns in the District of Pali which have more population than the town of Sumerpur, it cannot be taken that the non-applicability of the provisions of the Act to those towns would cause discrimination between the inhabitants of Sumerpur and three other towns. In order to make out a case of discrimination. It was the duty of the petitioner to provide detailed information to show that the other three towns mentioned in the petition for the purpose of providing accommodation to the tenants are placed in similar circumstances. In the absence of any particulars, which are required to enable the Court to compare the facility of accommodation available in each one of the towns mentioned in the petition, this Court cannot hold that the power under Section 2 (2) of the Act has been exercised by the State Government in a discriminatory manner.

9. In AIR 1954 Rai 197 Section I (31 of the Rajasthan Agricultural Rents Control Act (No, 19 of 19321 was challenged as being violative of Article 14 of the Constitution on the ground that there was no guiding principle in the Act controlling the discretion of the State Government to apply the provisions of the Act to particular areas in Rajasthan, and the discretion so vested in the State Government under Section 1 (31 of the Act was absolute and unfettered. The learned Judges, after having gone through the Act and the preamble, did not find any guiding principles for the State Government to apply the Act to certain areas of the State leaving the other areas from the operation of the said Act. That Act was enacted to check the tendencies of charging increased rents from the tenants by the landholders. The learned Judges were of opinion that the discretion given to the State Government to apply the provisions of the Act in a particular area in the State was unfettered as no guidelines were provided by the Legislature to exercise such a power, nor can such guidelines be read in the provisions of the Act.

10. The principle laid down in that judgment cannot be made applicable to the present case because in this case I find that the Act can be applied only to those towns where there is dearth of accommodation and the rents are going high because of the dearth of accommodation and the tenants are put to harassment with a view to charge more rents because of the conditions prevalent in the town. With this difference in the facts, I cannot accept the argument advanced by learned counsel for the petitioner that the power given to the State Government by Section 2 (2) of the Act is naked and unfettered.

11. For the reasons mentioned above, I do not find any life in this writ petition and it is therefore, dismissed. No order as to costs.


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