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Monday, December 8, 2014

whether the appellant be granted leave to defend the eviction petition filed by the respondents-landlords. = when there is a fair dispute to be tried in the eviction petition and the appellant be granted leave to defend. However, leave to defend could be granted to the appellant only conditionally. =2014 - Oct- Part- SHANTI DEVI ...Appellant Versus RAJESH KUMAR JAIN & ANR. ..Respondents

                                                              NON-REPORTABLE

                        IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
                        CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION

                       CIVIL APPEAL NO. 9378  OF 2014
                 (Arising out of SLP (Civil) No. 37274/2012)


SHANTI DEVI                                            ...Appellant

                                   Versus

RAJESH KUMAR JAIN & ANR.                          ..Respondents



                                  O R D E R


R. BANUMATHI, J.

Leave granted.
2.          In this appeal, short  question  falling  for  consideration  is
whether the appellant be granted  leave  to  defend  the  eviction  petition
filed by the respondents-landlords.
3.          Appellant is a tenant in respect of shop premises  situated   on
the ground floor of  a  property  No.  6157,  Partap  Street,  Behind  Kothi
Bhagwan  Dass,  Gandhi  Nagar,           Delhi  -110031  since  1988.    The
appellant has been engaged in carrying on her business (Disco Hair  Dresser)
in the said premises.  The respondents-landlords filed an eviction  petition
under Section 14 (1) (e) of Delhi Rent Control Act  (DRC  Act)  against  the
appellant, interalia, on the ground of bonafide requirement to open  office-
cum-display counter on the main  road  side  to  expand  their  business  of
cosmetic unit.  The appellant filed application under  Section  25B  (5)  of
DRC Act read with Section 151 CPC  seeking  leave  to  defend  the  eviction
petition.   The  appellant  raised  the  plea  that  there  is  no  bonafide
requirement and that the respondents  have  alternative  accommodation.  The
Addl. Rent Controller, Karkardooma Court, Delhi  dismissed  the  application
of the appellant-tenant on the ground  that  the  appellant  has  failed  to
raise any triable issue.  Being  aggrieved,  the  appellant  filed  revision
petition before the High Court under sub-section (8) of Section 25B  of  DRC
Act and the same was dismissed.  Hence, this appeal by special leave.
4.          We  have  heard  counsel  for  the  appearing  parties.  Learned
counsel for respondents contended that the landlords needed the property  in
question to expand their business, as the space currently available to  them
is insufficient. It was submitted that the  appellant-tenant  owned  another
property, along with her husband in  the  same  locality,  where  she  could
shift her business. The appellant-tenant denied the  issues  raised  by  the
respondents-landlords with respect to having alternative accommodations.
5.          We are not inclined to go into the merits of rival  contentions,
lest, it would amount to expression of views on the merits  of  the  matter.
In the facts and circumstances of the case, we are of  the  view,  that  the
appellant has raised a triable issue, in the sense, that  there  is  a  fair
dispute to be tried in the eviction petition and the  appellant  be  granted
leave to  defend.   However,  leave  to  defend  could  be  granted  to  the
appellant only  conditionally.   When  the  revision  petition  was  pending
before the High Court, the appellant agreed to pay to the landlords rent  at
the rate of Rs.3,000/- per month and the same could be continued.
6.          The impugned order of the High Court in  Revision  Petition  No.
347/2011 is set aside and the appeal is allowed.  The appellant  shall  file
her reply statement before the Addl.  Rent  Controller,  Karkardooma  Court,
Delhi within four weeks from today and the  learned  Addl.  Rent  Controller
shall afford sufficient opportunity to both the  parties  and  proceed  with
the matter in accordance with law and dispose of the same preferably  within
a period of six months from the date of  receipt  of  copy  of  this  Order.
Till the disposal of the eviction petition, the appellant shall continue  to
pay rent at the rate of           Rs.3,000/- per month on or before  7th  of
each succeeding English calendar month.   No costs.

                                                                 …………………………J
                                             (T.S. Thakur)


                                                                 …………………………J
                                                              (R. Banumathi)
New Delhi;
October 9, 2014
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