Decided on June 26,2003



K.S.Kumaran, - (1.)RESPONDENT-Industrial Investment Bank of India (formerly known as Industrial Reconstruction Bank of India, and hereinafter referred to as 'the respondent-Bank') filed O.A. 200/97 against (1) M/s. Premier Vegetable Products Ltd., (2) Mr. D.N. Jaju, (3) Mr. San war Mal Aggarwal, (4) Mr. S.N. Ojha (hereinafter referred to as 'the appellant'), and (5) Mr. Shyam Sunder Sharma before the Debts Recovery Tribunal, Delhi (hereinafter referred to as 'the DRT'). The DRT passed the ex parte final order against the appellant and others on 25.11.1999. The appellant filed a Miscellaneous Application under Section 22 of the Recovery of Debts Due to Banks and Financial Institutions Act, 1993 (hereinafter referred to as 'the Act') for setting aside the exparte final order urging that notice of the O.A. was not served upon the appellant. He also claims that he was not aware of the proceedings before the Tribunal. According to the appellant, he was a resident of A-15/B, Hauz Khas, New Delhi, but, had shifted his residence to B-2/1 -B, Nidhi House, Flat No. 102, Safdarjung Enclave, New Delhi-110029. The appellant also claims that one of the letters sent to him by the Recovery Officer to the former address was redirected to him to the new address mentioned above, and it is only from that letter he came to know of the exparte final order/ Recovery Certificate.
(2.)The said application for setting aside the ex parte final order along with a similar application filed by the 5th defendant-Shyam Sunder Sharma, was heard and dismissed by the learned Presiding Officer of the DRT by his common order dated 4.12.2001 observing that the notice sent to the appellant was not received back unserved, though, the postal receipts showed the despatch of the notice by registered post with acknowledgement due, and that the normal presumption is that the notice was served. He also observed that, by way of abundant caution, notice was also published in the newspaper 'Statesman' and since the appellant did not appear despite service, he was rightly prpceeded ex parte. Therefore, he held that there was no merit, and dismissed the application in limine.
Aggrieved, the appellant has preferred this appeal. The 1st respondent has filed a suitable reply opposing this appeal, and notice to the respondents 2 to 5 was dispensed with as they are proforma parties to this appeal.

(3.)I have heard the learned Counsels for both the sides, and perused the records.

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