Jagat Narain, J.
1. This is a revision application by a tenant against an appellate order of the Additional Civil Judge, Ajmer, fixing the standard rent of the premises consisting of one shop and two godowns at Rs. 40/- per month.
2. The shop and one godown were let out to the defendant on 1.1.1943 at Rs. 11/- and Rs. 4/- respectively. In 1965 a fresh agreement was entered into between the parties under which another godown was also let out to the defendant by the plaintiff. This godown was fetching a rent of Rs. 1.50 on 1.1.43. Under the new agreement the rent for the premises consisting of a shop and two godowns; was settled at Rs. 28/-between the parties. On 28.2.66 the landlord filed the.; present suit for enhancement of rent claiming that the basic rent of the premises was Rs. 16.50. on 1.1.43 and in view of the increased prevailing cost he was entitled to enhancement of the rent to Rs. 41.25 at 2 1/2 times the basic rent as the premises were let out for commercial purposes.
3. The trial court held that the premises which were let out to the defendant in 1965 consisting of one shop and two godowns were never let out earlier to any one else as a separate unit and that the basic rent of these new premises which were first let out in December 1965 was Rs. 28/- which could not be enhanced in view of the proviso to Section 6(2)(b) of the Rajasthan Premises (Control of Rent and Eviction) Act, 1950 It followed a decision of the Division Bench of the Calcutta High Court in Bata Shoe & Co. v. Narayan Das. : AIR1953Cal234 . It accordingly dismissal the suit of the plaintiff.
4. The landlord appealed and the learned Civil Judge allowed it fixing the standard rent at Rs. 40/-. It held that the decision in the Calcutta case was not applicable, but did not give any reason for holding that it was riot so applicable.
5. The contention on behalf of the tenant is that the ratio decided in the Calcutta case is fully applicable to the present case. On the other hand it is argued on behalf of the landlord that the definition of 'Premises' in the Rajasthan Act is different from the definition of 'Premises under the West Bengal Act and therefore the Calcutta decision is not applicable.'
6. Under the Rajasthan Premise? (Control of Rent and Eviction) Act, 1950 Section 3(v) defines 'premises' as follows:
'Premises' means : (a) Any land not being used for agricultural purposes, and
(b) Any building or part of building (other than a farm building) let or intended to be let for use as a residence or for commercial use or for any other purposes, including:
(i) the garden, grounds, godowns, garages and out houses, if any appurtenant to such building or part,
(ii) Any furniture supplied by the landlord for use in such building or part,
(iii) any fittings, affixed to and amenities provided in, such building or part for the more beneficial enjoyment thereof, and
(iv) any land appurtinant to and let with any such building or part
but does not include a room or other accomodation in a hotel, dharamshala, inn, sarai, lodging house, boarding house or hostel;
Under the West Bengal Act the word 'premises' was defined to mean any building or part of a building or any hut or part of a hut let separately and.... The 'words let separately' do not find place in the definition of premises under the Rajasthan Act.
7. A similar question came up for decision before this Court in R.B. Bhag chand Soni, v. Kailashnath Bhargava 1961 RLW 509. The case was under the Delhi and Ajmer Rent Control Act, 1952 under Section 2(g) of which 'Premises' meant any building or part of a building which was or was intended to be let separately for use as a residence or for commercial use or for any othjr purpose. The decision in Voughan v. Shaw 1945 (2) AER 52 was followed in that case In the enactment which came up for interpretation before the Court of Appeal in that case 'dwelling house' was defined as a house let as a separate dwelling or a part of house being a part so let. The respondent was the landlord On September 1, 1939 the house was let into two separate parts, one tenant paying rent at 27 as a week and the other 15 s 6 d. a week. In January 1941 the respondent let the whole of the house to the appellant at 25 Section a week. The respondent then applied to the court to have the standard rent fixed at 32 Section 6 d. a week since that was the total weekly rent of the house when it was let in two parts on September 1, 1939,. It was held that as the house itself was not let on September 1, 1939, as a complete dwelling house the standard rent was therefore the rent at 25 Section a week at which the house was first so let after September 1, 1939 in view of the definition contained under the Act as a part of the building let separately. That decision was based solely on the ground that dwelling house was defined as a house let as a separate dwelling or part of a house being a part so let.
8. The decision in the Calcutta case was however not based on the definition of the word 'premises' in the West Bengal Act. The reasoning on which the decision was based is as follows:
In its grammetical sense the word 'premises' obviously means a building or part of a building a hut or part of a hut which is the subject matter of a separate demise, in other words the word 'premises' means whatever formed the subject-matter of one demise. Neither the context nor the subject, require us to place a forced construction of the word 'premises' as suggested on behalf of the opposite party.
The meaning of the word 'premises' as contended for by the petitioner is the correct one, receives support from the definitions of the words 'landlord' and 'tenant' as occuring in the Act. The 'landlord' is defined in Section 2, Clause 4 of the Act to mean any person who for the time being is recovering the rent of any premises from the tenant thereof & includes any person who is entitled to bring a suit for such rent. The word 'tenant' is defined in Section 2(ii) to mean any person to whom rent is, or but for a special contract would be, payable for any premises and includes any person who is liable to be sued by the landlord for rent, when the Act therefore speaks of an application either by the landlord or the tenant to apply for to fix rent of standard rent it obviously implies that the Controller is required to fix the rent of the tenancy in question That this is the true, interpretation of the word 'premises' would also appear if we consider the other provisions of the Act, namely provisions of ejectment of tenant etc. The words 'the premises or the whole of the premises' in Section 9 Clause (c) do not point to a different conclusion. In my opinion, a conclusion of the various provisions of the Act is consistent only with the view that what the Act was compellating was a determination of the relationship between the landlord and the tenant of a tenancy and to regulate the same in terms of the Act. It would be incorrect to use the word 'premises' as referable to the land itself apart from the question of a tenancy in respect of the same. On all these grounds we are of the opinion that the contention raised on be half of the petitioner is correct. It must therefore be held that the basic rent of the premises cannot be determined on the footing of the rent which was payable for the two different portions of the said premises which were in the occupation of different tenants on that date. The Court has got to determine what rent was properly payable for the premises the rent whereof is now sought to be standardised, on the material date namely 1.12.1941.
9. In the Rajasthan Act also the word 'premises obviously means a building or part of a building which is the subject matter of separate demise 'Landlord' means any person who for the time being is receiving or is entitled to receive the rent of any premises. 'Tenant' means the person by whom the rent of the premises is payable. One shop and one godown which were let out on 1.1.1943 at Rs. 15/- per month to the defendant formed one premises. The other godown which was left out to a third person on 1.1.43 at Rs. 1.50 per month formed second premises. When the shop and the two godowns were let out to the defendant in 1965 they formed new premises which were let out for the first time in 1965. The basic rent of these premises was thus Rs. 28/- in view of the explanation to Section 6(2) of the Rajasthan Act. Further as the premises were first let after the first day of January, 1946 the standard rent could not exceed the basic rent under the first proviso to Section 6(2)(b) of the Rajasthan Act.
10. There is another way of looking at the case - Bhairon Singh P.W. 3 stated that he was paying Rs. 20/- as rent for a shop to the plaintiff. The width of the shop is the same as the width of the shop in suit. But there is no evidence on record to show whether the length of the shop of Bharion Singh is the same as that of the shop let out to the defendant. The mere fact that Bharion Singh's shop has three Khandis and the defendant's shop has four Khandis cannot lead to the inference that that the defendant's shop is bigger Bhairon Singh shop. Ghisa Lal P.W. 4 stated that he was paying Rs. 25/- as rent for a shop of 3 Khandis. The width of this shop is not known. Nor is there any evidence as to what is the depth of this shop and what is the depth of the defendant's shop. There is thus no evidence on record on the basis of which the reasonable rent of the defendant's shop can be determined.
11. The plaintiff also failed to produce any evidence on the basic of which the reasonable rent of the two godowns can be determined. The burden lay on the plaintiff to prove what the rent of the premises in such case should be having regard to the prevailing rate of rent of similar accommodation in the locality. In this view of the matter also the plaintiff failed to make out a case for enhancement of the rent of the premises in suit.
12. I accordingly allow the revision application, set aside the order of the appellate court and dismiss the suit of the Plaintiff for enhancement of rent.
13. The defendant will be entitled to recover the costs of the proceedings of this Court, in the appellate court and in the trial court from the plaintiff.