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Unsuccessful litigants after having suffered a judgment cannot be allowed to raise the plea with regard to Section 12A of the Commercial Courts Act: Delhi High Court

If the petitioner/defendant tenant had bona fide intentions, the said request should have been made at the earliest before the Commercial Court and unsuccessful litigants after having suffered a judgment cannot be allowed to raise the plea with regard to Section 12A of the Commercial Courts Act as upheld by the High Court of Delhi through the learned bench led by Justice Amit Bansal in the case of Gurjinder Singh V. S. Gurbir Singh (CM(M) 966/2021).

Brief facts of the case are that the suit premises were let out to the petitioner/defendant tenant for commercial purposes vide unregistered rent agreement dated 22nd January, 2018 for a period of five years at the monthly rent of Rs. 15,000/-, excluding electricity and water charges. The petitioner/defendant tenant paid the rent till January, 2019 and thereafter, stopped paying rent w.e.f. 1st February, 2019. As the petitioner/defendant tenant failed to clear the arrears, the tenancy was terminated by serving a one-months’ notice dated 24th October, 2019. Despite receipt of the said legal notice, the petitioner/defendant tenant failed to clear the arrears. Accordingly, the suit was filed by respondent/plaintiff landlord for possession, recovery of arrears of rent, mesne profits and for permanent injunction against the petitioner/defendant tenant. The said suit in question was filed as an ordinary suit and was converted into a commercial suit on 10th January, 2020. The petitioner/defendant tenant entered appearance before the Commercial Court on 4th February, 2020. In January 2021, an application under Order XIII-A of the CPC was also filed by respondent/plaintiff landlord for passing summary judgment against the petitioner/defendant tenant in respect of relief of possession. The said application has been allowed and the Commercial Court has passed a summary judgment for eviction on 1st April, 2021. Hence, the present petition.

The Hon’ble Court held, “The only answer forthcoming from the counsel for the petitioner/defendant tenant was that it was on account of COVID-19 pandemic. It is clear from the above that the present has been filed belatedly, only after when the petitioner came across the ground with regard to the maintainability of suits on non-compliance with Section 12A of the Commercial Courts Act. Even till date no application with regard to Section 12A of Commercial Courts Act has been filed by the petitioner/defendant tenant before the Commercial Court. No grounds for interference with the impugned judgment are made out under Article 227 of the Constitution of India. Dismissed.”

Click here to read the Judgment

Judgment Reviewed by – Vandana Ragwani

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