M/S. LEELA BROTHERS Vs. LADU RAM
HIGH COURT OF RAJASTHAN
M/S. Leela Brothers
Referred Judgements :-
JAGDISH PRASAD V. KAPOOR CHAND
JAMNADAS V. GOKUL
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(1.)THIS is tenant's revision against the judgment and decree of the learned Additional District Judge (2), Jodhpur dated March 22, 1978, by which the judgment and decree of the additional Civil Judge, Jodhpur dated March 31, 1976 were reversed and his suit for fixation of standard rent filed under Section 6 of the Rajasthan Premises (Control of Rent and Eviction) Act, 1950 (hereinafter referred to as 'the Act'), was dismissed.
(2.)BRIEFLY stated, the relevant facts giving rise to this revision are that the plaintiff M/s. Leela Brothers - a registered partnership firm functioning at Jodhpur-Instituted a suit for fixation of standard rent in the Court of Munsif City, Jodhpur on August 10, 1972, which later on came for trial before the Additional Civil Judge, Jodhpur The case set up in the plaint is that the demised shop situate on Chopasani Road, Jodhpur was rented out to it by the defendants Ladu Ram and Shivraj (hereinafter referred to as the landlords) on December 20, 1963 on a monthly rent of Rs. 245/-.The tenant was to pay electricity charges for energy consumed as per meter reading and Rs. 5/- per month as water charges in addition to the rent. The landlords later on served a notice on the tenant requiring it to vacate the shop. The negotiation took place between the parties and as a result the rent was increased to Rs. 300/- per month the notice was consequently withdrawn. It was alleged that the new agreement enhancing the rent from Rs. 245/- to Rs. 300/- per month, being a contravention of the Act was void unenforceable. The increased rent of Rs. 300/- per month was excessive. The basic rent of the shop was Rs. 245/- per month and it could not be increased since the shop in dispute was first let out after 1946 on monthly rent of Rs. 250/-. The relief claimed is that the standard rent of the demised property be fixed at Rs. 245/- per month. The suit was resisted by the landlords mainly on the ground that the tenant was not entitled to get the standard rent fixed. The agreement to pay the enhanced rent at Rs. 300/- per month was not void but valid and effect must be given to it. The Civil Judge, Jodhpur raised the necessary issues, which were only two in number. Issue No. 1 related to the main controversy as to whether the plaintiff (tenant) was entitled to get the standard rent fixed at a rate different from that agreed to between the parties. The parties led evidence. On the conclusion of trial, the learned Civil Judge held that (1) the tenant was entitled to get the standard rent fixed and (2) the basic rent of the demised premises in Rs. 245/- per month. Since the shop in dispute was first rented out after 1946, the standard rent of the shop cannot exceed the basic rent The tenant's suit was, therefore, decreed and the standard rent was fixed at Rs. 245/- per month with effect from January 1, 1972. The landlord went to appeal which was heard by the Additional District Judge (2), Jodhpur. While the appeal was still pending, amendments were introduced in Section 6 of the Act. The figures Rs.1965' were substituted for the original figures Rs.1946' in the Section 6(2) proviso (1) of Section 6 of the Act. So also, the figures Rs.1962' was substituted for the original figures Rs.1943' in the explanation attached to sub-section 6 of the Act. Taking notice of these amendments and holding them to be retrospective in operation as applicable to pending proceedings including the appeals, the learned Additional District Judge allowed the appeal, reversed the judgment and decree of the trial Court and dismissed the tenant's suit. The Additional District Judge in doing so, followed the dicta laid down in a Single Bench Judgment in Jagdish Prasad v. Kapoor Chand, 1978(1) Rent Control Reporter 61. Aggrieved against the judgment and decree of the Additional District Judge, the tenant has come up in revision.
I have heard the learned counsel for the parties and have also gone through the record. Having heard them, I find no difficulty of whatsoever in accepting this revision.
(3.)LEARNED counsel for the tenant contended and contended rightly that the judgment and decree of the lower appellate Court stands erroneous in view of the fact that the view taken in Jagdish Prasad's case (supra) has been expressly over-ruled by a Division Bench of this Court in Jamnadas v. Gokul Das, 1983(2) Rent Control Reporter 551. The amendments introduced in sub-Section (2) of Section 6 of the Act have been held prospective and not retrospective so as to apply to the pending actions. Mr. Chopra, appearing for the landlords frankly conceded to this position but submitted that despite this, the increased rent of Rs. 300/- per month should be allowed at least from the day when the said agreement amendments were introduced.
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