It appeared that the petitioner had not paid the rent during the long pendency of proceedings and the present petition is to be a blatant misuse of the process of courts. So, all the petitions would be dismissed with a cost of Rs. One lakh held by Hon’ble Justice Rajbir Sehrawat in M/s A.R.Ventures and another versus M/s Roop Square Pvt. Ltd. and another [CR No. 7265 of 2019 (O & M)]. The cost imposed on the petitioner has to be deposited within 45 days of the order given. If no receipt of such deposit is submitted to the registry of the Court, then action is to be taken for necessary recovery.
The facts leading to this case relate to the petition filed by the tenant, which he was using two premises w.e.f. 15.1.2017 under two separate agreements dated 1.12.2016. Respondent was the owner of the two properties mentioned in the buildings Roop square complex in Ludhiana. The petitioner had taken the top floor and 4th floor on rent with two separate written agreements dated 1.12.2016 with the monthly rent for the top floor was Rs. 1lakh monthly and 4th floor with Rs.4lakh monthly with 5% increment per annum, and the tenancy was fixed for 9years. The allegation was petitioner had paid rent for 5month only with intermittent default and after that defaulted for payment. Respondent verbally requested defaulted payment. After the request, some settlements were done and then again, the default was started. Without paying the rent, he was enjoying the property, and even he was not paying the electricity charges and any other taxes and the respondent was forced to pay the GST. Then respondent filed the two separate petitions under the Punjab Rent Act, 1995. For recovery of possession as well as claiming his requirement for expanding his business. The petitioner has also filed the petition under Section 20(2) of the Act stated that the respondent had not given any notice in the prescribed manner, so the eviction petition was void and deserved to be rejected, and the petitioner has also filed the written petition that Rent Authority taken this consideration and framed this issues for its determination. The Appellate Authority considered four appeals, two filed by the petitioner/tenant and two filed by the respondent/landlord. The Appellate Authority dismissed the appeals filed by the petitioner and held that the Rent Authority had rightly rejected the application for rejection of the eviction petitions. In the appeal filed by the respondent/landlord, the Appellate Authority held that since the tenant has not paid the rent and the default continued even during the pendency of the proceedings before the Rent Authority, therefore, the tenant was liable to be evicted for non-payment of rent. Hence, the appeals filed by the Landlord were allowed.
Counsel of the petitioner has stated that the Rent Authority was restrained from passing such an order because the respondent has not given any written notice prescribed in Section 20(2) and also submitted that the agreement was not registered as per section 4 of the Act, so same is not admissible in evidence as per section 49 of the Registration Act, 1860. so this agreement has not no legal value and has not been led in evidence by the respondent. Counsel also submitted during the pendency the Landlord has disconnected the facilities available to the tenant. Which is against section 19 of the Act.
The Hon’ble High Court at Punjab and Haryana stated that no application at the instance of a tenant for rejection of an eviction petition on the ground of non-service of notice specified in the VII schedule is maintainable. The Rent Authority cannot even entertain any such application as such. Still further, the eviction petition cannot be rejected and dismissed as non-maintainable only because the Landlord had not given any notice before filing the same on account of non-payment of rent. Therefore, the arguments of counsel for the petitioner against the dismissal of his applications by the Courts below, qua rejection of the eviction petition, is rejected. “The Hon’ble Supreme Court considered the aspect of notice through a Bench comprising of 7 Hon’ble Judges in the context of provisions contained in Rent Acts of various states, in the judgment of V.Dhanapal Chettier v. Yasodai Ammal, 1979 (2) RCR (Rent) 352, wherein it was held even if the prescribed notice is not given by the Landlord that would not, in all situations, defeat his petition. Suppose in an eviction petition filed on the ground of non-payment of rent. The tenant continues to default in payment of rent even during the Court proceedings. In that case, the filing of the petition itself shall be deemed a valid notice to the tenant. Hence, the provision of giving notice by the Landlord to the tenant is only like abundant caution to enable parties to make themselves clear qua the issue of non-payment of rent”. Therefore, this provision, in itself, is not a ground to defeat the eviction petition filed by the Landlord against their tenant. The status of such a person shall not be even of permissive possession. Such a person shall not be more than a rank- trespasser. He shall not be entitled to any protection or defence against the Landlord. However, the Landlord shall still be having full ownership rights over such property, including his right to uninterrupted possession to the property, being a lawful owner. Hence, the Landlord shall be fully entitled to ask such a person to vacate the property, and if not so left, to throw out such a person without recourse to any legal process. Even if the Landlord takes recourse to a legal process, then the Court shall also be bound to order restoration of possession without entertaining any defence on the part of any such alleged tenant. The decision held by The Lordship regarding the registration of rent agreement is that In Punjab Registration Act, there is no provision as contained in Section 4 for consequences for not registering of agreement. It includes the only direction. Once an agreement is in writing, it becomes a valid agreement. Mere nonregistration of this agreement does not divest it of its essential character and nature. “Non-registration of the agreements as such would not make the agreements to be void”. The petitioner is ordered to be evicted from the premises in question with immediate effect. The Landlord is held entitled to arrears of rent at the rate as per the agreement and with the statutory rate of interest @ 15% per annum from the date of filing the petitions till actually receiving the possession of the premises in question. Accordingly, the Rent Authority is directed to:-
- ensure immediate eviction of the petitioner from both the premises in question;
- calculate the arrears of rent as per the rental agreement, along with 15% per annum interest, for the period from the date of filing of the petitions till the date of actual handing over of the possession to the Landlord; and to order immediate recovery of the same as arrears of land revenue;
- Ensure immediate recovery of arrears of rent, as determined by the Lower Appellate Authority for the period before the date of filing of the petitions, as arrears of land revenue. The cost imposed hereinabove is ordered to be deposited with Poor Patients Welfare Fund, PGI, Chandigarh, within 45 days from today. If the petitioner submits no receipt of such deposit to the register of this Court, then shall place the matter before a Bench of this Court for the necessary recovery process.