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No amendment to be allowed if it substitutes cause of action of nature of claim: High Court Of Calcutta

The subject matter of challenge is against the order dated 11th April 2019. Allowing amendment of a written statement of the defendant, and this was held in the judgement passed by a single bench judge comprising The Hon’ble Justice Subhasis Dasgupta,  in the matter M/s. Pragati Pratisthan Private Limited Vs. Ashok Kumar Agarwal [CO. No. 1599 of 2019].

Mr Krishna Das Podder learned advocate representing the petitioner/plaintiff, submitted that the plaintiff had been irretrievably prejudiced by denying him the opportunity of extracting the admission from the defendant, and also the proposed amendment of written statement about serial no. 1 of schedule of the amendment, according to Mr Podder, would seek to displace the plaintiff completely from his case.

The reliance was placed by the learned Advocate for the petitioner on a decision reported in [AIR 1977 SC 680] delivered in the case of M/s. Modi Spinning & Weaving Mills Co. Ltd. and Anr. Vs. M/s. Ladha Ram & Co.  Also, the learned Advocate for the petitioner contended that there is no necessity for amendment of a written statement concerning serial nos. 2 and 3 because, in the original written statement, it was already there, and as such it was an unnecessary exercise made by the defendants/opposite parties, which learned court below ought not to have allowed.

The defendant party categorically admitted in his written statement that he was a tenant in respect of one room on the first floor of the building, and has been using and occupying the said premises for three decades by paying rent therefore without any default. Mr Poddar also urged before the court that denial of ownership plaintiff by the opposite party, and consequently denial of tenancy by the opposite party, not being raised in course of hearing of the petition filed by the opposite party/defendant under Sections 7(1) and 7(2) of the West Bengal Premises Tenancy Act.

Mr Ananda Gopal Mukherjee learned Advocate for the opposite party being assisted by Mr R. A. Agarwal raised challenges against the submissions advanced by the learned Advocate for the petitioner submitting that the learned court below rightly exercised its power under Order VI Rule 17 of the Code of Civil Procedure, by allowing the amendment of the written statement, so that the real controversy between the parties could be effectively and properly adjudicated. Reliance was sought to be made by a learned advocate for the opposite party on a decision reported in [AIR 1983 SC 462] rendered in the case of Panchdeo Narain Srivastava Vs. Km. Jyoti Sahay & Anr.

The Court also required to address the solitary issue of whether the prayer for amendment of the written statement was rightly allowed or not. It requires no mention that some of the important factors are necessary to be kept in mind by the Court while addressing a prayer for 6 amendments of pleadings under Order VI Rule 17 of C.P.C.

The Hon’ble High Court perused the facts and the arguments presented, and thereby, opined that -“In the result, the prayer for amendment of serial no.1 of the schedule of amendment of written statement appears to have been erroneously reached without adhering to the parameters laid down by the Apex Court, and the settled proposition of law, decided by the Apex Court on such issue, In the result, the prayer for amendment of serial no.1 of the schedule of amendment of written statement appears to have been erroneously reached without adhering to the parameters laid down by the Apex Court, and the settled proposition of law, decided by the Apex Court on such issue”.

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Judgment Reviewed by: Mandira BS 

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