1. This revision under the Tamil Nadu Buildings (Lease and Rent Control) Act 1960. raises a point about recidivate in the following circumstances:
2. The petitioner is the owner of a non-residential building in Arni under the tenancy of the respondent. In the year 1973. the petitioner moved the Rent Controller for eviction of the tenant. inter alia. on the ground that he required the building for housing a business of his own. The Rent Controller dismissed that petition on the preliminary point that prior to filing the petition no notice to quit under S. 106 of the Transfer of Property Act had been issued to the tenant. In this view. the Rent Controller did not have to go into the merits of any of the grounds of eviction raised in the Petition.
3. Two or three years later the Petitioner came out with another eviction petition before the Rent Controller against the same tenant on the self-same grounds. This time the Rent Controller went into the merits and granted an order of eviction, holding that the petitioner required the building bona fide for his own business.
4. The tenant appealed. contending that the present Proceedings were barred bv res iudicata under S. 19 of the Act. The aronellate authority upheld the contention and dismissed the eviction Petition on that ground. reversing the decision of the Rent Controller.,
5. In this revision. the petitioner contends that Section 19 does not apply and the appellate authority acted wrongly in dismissing the Present eviction Petition on the round of res iudicata.
6. I uphold this contention as well founded. Section 19 of the Act incorporates the principle of res iudicata more or less on the same lines as in the Civil Procedure Code. The section enacts that the Rent Controller shall summarily reject an eviction petition if that petition raises between the same Parties substantially the same issues as have been finally decided in a former proceeding under the Act. Two important requisites must be present for applying this section. One is that there must be identity of issues in the two proceedings The other is that the former Proceeding must have been decided on the very issues which figure in the later proceedings.
7. The question is whether these two in the present requisites are fulfilled case. The answer. to my mind must be
clearly in the negative. issue as to bona fide Personal occupation was an issue both in the former proceeding
and in the present proceeding, that issue was not decided at all in the former proceeding. And while the disposal
of the former proceeding was solelv on the issue of notice to quit. no such issue at all figured between the arties
in the present proceeding. Either way. Therefore Section 19 does not apply to the Present case. The appellate
authority was ini error in summarily relecting the present eviction Petition as barred by resjudicata under that
8. It may be that the former decision of the Rent Controller on the issue as to quit notice can be assailed as erroneous in Point of law if such an argument were now open. Incidentally. the Supreme Court have recently laid down that the question of quit notice under Section 106 of the Transfer Of Property Act is quite alien to the scheme of the Rent Control legislation and is altogether irrelevant in eviction proceedings before the Rent Controller. But can we go into the question at all now? We cannot. For seeing whether the present proceeding is or is not barred by res judicata. we do not have to. and we cannot. examine the correctness or incorrectness of the decision in the former Proceeding. We only have to see whether the same substantial issue raised between the parties had had a disposal on merits in the former Proceedings. The inquiry. in this sense. might well be regarded as one on a question of fact touching the factum of disposal of the issue in the former proceeding. ra'her than on a question of law as to whether that decision was correct or not. Res judicata proceeds on the principle that in the interests of the parties themselves it would be expedient to stifle. rather than countenance. further discussion of the controversies which had been thrashed out in an earlier encounter.
9. To come back to the main point of discussion. for reasons I have earlier mentioned. I conclude that the appellate authority in this case was not right in holding that the present Proceeding for eviction is barred by res iudicata under Section 19 of the Act. It follows that the summary disposal of the appeal before him on this ground was wrong. I accordingly set aside that order. and direct the appellate authority to hear and determine the appeal afresh on' , the merits. The revision is allowed accordingly, but there will be no order as to costs.
10. Revision allowed.