Decided on October 28,1971



- (1.) The petitioner is the owner of the premises bearing No. 18-1-25, at K. G. Hospital Road, Maharanipeta, Visakhapatnam. The premises in question was purely a non-residential building, intended mainly for the location of shops. The said building had been acquired by the Accommodation Controller and was in occupation of the State Government, and was later released in favour of the petitioner by an order of the Government and possession of the building was handed over to the petitioner on the 5th of April. 1971. On the 7th of June 197,1 the petitioner addressed a letter that two of the rooms on the ground-floor were not required for the occupation of the petitioner and that, he proposes to letout the said rooms. This intimation was received by the Accommodation Controller on the 9th of June, 1971. It is the case of the petitioner that he did not receive any communication from the Accommodation Controller that the said rooms had been allotted by him in accordance with the provisions of Section 3 of the Andhra Pradesh Buildings (Lease, Kent and Eviction) Control Act of 1960 (herein after referred to as "the Rent Control Act"). It seems", the Accommodation Controller had passed an order on the 15th of June 1971 allotting the said rooms to the District Women Welfare Officer. The allottee produced the said order on the 17th of June 1971 before the petitioner's son-in- law who Was occupying the premises. The petitioner's son-in-law, after seeing the order, handed over possession to the allottee on the 21st of June, 1971. After coming to know of the possession being taken over by the 2nd respondent, the petitioner waited till 23rd of June 1971, that bring the last date for his receiving any communication of the order, of allotment from the 1st respondent, and not having received any communication from the 1st respondent till that date the petitioner sent a notice on 23rd of June 1971 requesting the 1st respondent to evict the 2nd respondent from the premises as the petitioner was entitled, under the Act, either to let out the same to a tenant of his choice, or to occupy the same himself. The petitioner also went to Visakhapatnam and met the Controller in his office on 28th of June 1971 and explained to him that his act was illegal and requested him to have the premises vacated by the 2nd respondent, but the first respondent persisted in maintaining his illegal act; Hence this writ petition by the petitioner.
(2.) In his counter affidavit, the Accommodation Controller has stated that he received the report of vacancy from the petitioner on the 9th of June 1971 and he made an order allotting the said rooms to the District Women Welfare Officer for locating "Bala Vihar". A copy of the allottment order was sent to the landlord, who lives in Hyderabad, by post The contention of the landlord (Petitioner) that the orders of allotment were not communicated to him, is not correct. The fact of the allotment was also made known to the petitioners son-in-law, who residesin the upstairs portion of the building in question, well in advance, and he did not object to the allotment and gave the possession of the downstairs portion to the allottee. Thus it is evident that the petitioner's son-in-law who is residing in the upstairs portion and who is incharge of the entire building, is in the know of the allotment orders and that, even the landlord was intimated at Hyderabad before the expiry of the 15 days period, Vide Rc. No.15-45/71, dated 15-6-71.
(3.) The building itself was taken possession of from the son-in-law of the Petitioner before the 15 days period stipulated in Sub-sec.(3)of S. 3 of the Andhra Pradesh Buildings(Lease,Rent &Eviction) Control Act 1950. Sub- sec. (3) df Section 3 of the said Act gives liberty to the landlord to let out the building to any tenant or to occupy it 'himself, in the event of not receiving any intimation from the Accommodation Controller before the period of 15 days. In the present case, the portion of the Building was allotted to a Government Officer and was also occupied on 17th of June 1971 i. e. before the expiry of the period of 15 days, with the consent of the agent, i. e. the son-in-law of the landlord and, therefore, "there is no infringement of the Rules, as alleged by the petitioner." From the aforesaid extract, from the counter-affidavit filed by the 1st respondent, it can be seen that it is not the case of the Accommodation Controller that any attempt was made by him to deliver or tender the order of allotment to the petitioner (landlord), and if it was not possible to so deliver or tender, any attempt was made to deliver or tender the same to any agent or employee of the petitioner or to any adult member of his family, or it was sought to be -served by affixing a copy thereof on the outer door of the premises. What the Accommodation Controller says is that 'the communication was sent to the petitioner by post and that, the petitioner's son-in-law who was in possession of the building was made aware of the order of allotnent and that he gave the possession of the premises. The question for consideration iss, whether this is sufficient in law to deorive the petitioner ot his right under sub-section (3) of Section 3 of the Rent Control Act, Sub-section (3) of Section 3. reads :- "If. within fifteen days of the receipt by the Authorised officer of a notice under sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) the Government or the Authorised Officer does not intimate to the landlord in writing that the building is required for the purposes of the State Government or the Central Government on any local authority or of any public institution under the control of any such Government or for the occupation of any officer of such Government, the landlord shall be at liberty to let the building to any tenant or to occupy it himself.";

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