Decided on May 25,2007



K. Gnanaprakasam, J. (Chairperson) - (1.) THE appellant Nos. 1 and 2 have purchased the subject property in the auction held on 6th June, 2003, and the same was sold to the appellant Nos. 3 to 5. All of them have jointly filed this appeal. Brief facts are as follows:
(2.) THE respondent No. 2 -Bank filed Original Application No. 58/1995 for recovery of the amount due from the respondent No. 1 and the same was decreed on 12th July, 1996. Recovery Certificate was issued on 6th November. 1996, and the properly was brought to auction on 24th September, 1997, fixing the upset price as Rs. 25 lacs, and the auction was not held for want of bidders. Subsequently the reserve price was also reduced to Rs. 18 lacs and the properly was brought to auction and it was sold on 6th June, 2003, and the auction was also confirmed on 7th July, 2003, appellant Nos. 1 and 2 have paid the entire sale consideration on 26th June, 2003, and got the sale -deed and subsequently sold to the appellant Nos. 3 to 5 on 5th August, 2004. The respondent No. 1 filed a claim petition C.P. -3/2004 before the Recovery Officer and the same was not considered and thereupon the respondent No. 1 filed W.P. No. 24754/2003 before the High Court of Andhra Pradesh, and the High Court by its order dated 4th December, 2003, directed the D.R.T. to dispose of the claim petition in accordance with the rules applicable, after due notice to the petitioner. The said claim petition came to be dismissed by order dated 13th July, 2004, and as against the same, the respondent No. 1 preferred an appeal before the learned Presiding Officer of D.R.T. in Recovery Appeal No. 15/2004 and the same was allowed by order dated 29th November, 2006. Aggrieved by the same, the purchasers have filed this appeal. I have heard the learned Advocates for the appellants and the respondent.
(3.) THE appellants contend that the claim of the respondent No. 1 is not sustainable. The respondent No. 1's case as slated in the claim petition was that in the auction notice published in Eanadu Newspaper on 8th September, 1997. neither Original Application No. nor R.P. No. was given. Item -3 of the auction notice relates to Pushpa Shyam Leather Industries (P) Ltd. The other items belong to someone else. The respondent No. 1 has notice about the offer for one time settlement in newspapers in the month of April, 2003, and had submitted an application to the respondent Bank and the Bank by its letter dated 3rd May, 2003, expressed their willingness to consider his application for one lime settlement on condition that he should pay the amount as per the guidelines prescribed by the R.B.I. He was willing to pay the amount and sent a letter on 12th May, 2003 stating that he was admitted in hospital and soon after discharge he would attend to the Bank and accordingly after discharge, he approached the Bank, but they did not respond properly and informed him that his properties have already been sold on 6th June, 2003. His further contention was that while his application for one time settlement was pending even as on 3rd May, 2003, the sale made on 6th June, 2003 is not proper and valid. There was a collusion in the conduct of sale and hence he filed W.P. No. 13673/2003 before the High Court of Andhra Pradesh, and the said writ petition was dismissed, observing that if the respondent No. 1 was aggrieved by the execution or method of execution, he may approach elsewhere. It is further contended that the claim petition filed by him was not at all entertained by the Recovery Officer and only upon the filing of the writ petition, the D.R.T. was directed to consider and dispose of the petition. It is stated that the Recovery Officer has not issued any notice when the sale was postponed from 24th September, 1997, and the sale was also not held within four years from the date of attachment and hence the auction held on 6th June, 2003, is bad in law. It is further submitted that when the reserve price was reduced from Rs. 25 lacs to Rs. 18 lacs, no notice was given to respondent and the value fixed by the Recovery Officer was not only low, but also illegal and violative of the rules. It is also stated that the property was worth more than Rs. 40 lacs, but whereas it was sold only for Rs. 18 lacs and odd and it is grossly under valued and therefore, the sale is liable to be set aside.;

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