Decided on September 15,1944

Calicut Bank Ltd. In Liquidation By Official Liquidators Appellant
Smt. C. Radhalakshmi Respondents


Leach, J. - (1.) THE question here is whether a Court must have regard to the provisions of the Madras House Rent Control Order, 1941, when deciding in execution proceedings an application with regard to the possession of house property. In O.S. No. 25 of 1938 in the Court of the Subordinate Judge of South Malabar the P and O Banking Corporation Limited obtained a mortgage decree for a large sum of money against one C. Unnithiri. Certain members of the mortgagor's family, including his three children, who were minors, were made defendants. The minors were represented by their mother Radhalakshmi, the respondent in this appeal. The Bank of Calicut Limited which is now in liquidation held a second mortgage on the properties of which one was the house in which the respondent and her children were living. At the sale held on 4th January 1943 in execution of the mortgage decree the Official Liquidator of the Calicut Bank Ltd., (hereinafter referred to as the Official Liquidator) purchased the house for the sum of Rs. 52000. The sale was confirmed on 6th February 1943. Through their mother as their next friend the minors filed O.S. No. 6 of 1943 in which they challenged the right of the mortgagees to sell the house and certain other properties. In the course of the proceedings they applied for an interim injunction against the Official Liquidator restraining him from taking possession of the house and from seeking confirmation of the sale. This application was dismissed by an order dated 11th March 1943. An appeal followed, but this was also dismissed.
(2.) ON 2nd March 1943 the Official Liquidator filed an application asking for an order directing the delivery to him of possession of the house and his prayer was granted on 11th March 1943. Notwithstanding this order, the Official Liquidator was obstructed by one Kallingal Kitta who it is alleged was acting at the instigation of the respondent. This necessitated the Official Liquidator applying for an order against Kallingal Kitta and the order was granted on 30th March 1943. In 1942 a Receiver was in possession of the house and on 18th April of that year he leased it to the respondent at a rent of Rs. 25 per month. On 7th June 1943 the respondent sent a notice to the receiver and the Official Liquidator Under Sub -section (1) of Section 7A of the Madras House Rent. Control Order, 1941. That section provided that if a tenant in possession wished to extend the period of his tenancy by not less than six, and not more than twelve months, he might give the landlord, not less than one month before the expiry of the tenancy, a written notice of his intention; and on the delivery of the notice, the tenancy should be deemed to have been extended for the period specified in the notice. The section also provided that the right of extending the tenancy conferred by this sub -clause might be exercised by the tenant as often as he thought fit. This order has been amended since but the amendments do not affect the question under discussion in this appeal. Section 2(s) of the Order defines the word "landlord" as including the person who is receiving or is entitled to receive the rent of a house whether on his own account or on behalf of himself and others or as an agent or trustee or who would so receive the rent or be entitled to receive the rent if the house were let to a tenant. The Receiver was a landlord within the meaning of the order and the respondent was entitled to avail her -self of the provisions of Section 7A(1). On 16th June 1943 the respondent filed an application in the Court of the Subordinate Judge Under Section 47, Civil P.C., asking that the order for possession should be limited to symbolical possession and relied on the rights conferred upon her as ii tenant by the House Rent Control Order, 1941. The Subordinate Judge held that her application was well founded and consequently directed that only symbolical possession should be given to the Official Liquidator. The appeal is from that order. We have no doubt that the order of the learned Subordinate Judge is right. The Madras House Rent Control Order conferred upon the respondent the right of having her tenancy continued provided she had given the requisite notice, which she had. She was in lawful possession of the house and the auction -purchaser could only get possession of the property subject to her rights under the order. We agree with the observation of the Subordinate Judge that where the extension of a tenancy is by operation of statute the Court is not concerned with the lack of merit in the tenant or of the hardship caused to the land -lord. The appeal must be dismissed with costs. The revision petition is also dismissed but without costs. The costs of the liquidator will come out of the estate.;

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