BABU RAM GOPAL Vs. MATHRA DASS
LAWS(SC)-1990-2-25
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA (FROM: PUNJAB & HARYANA)
Decided on February 28,1990

BABU RAM GOPAL Appellant
VERSUS
MATHRA DASS Respondents





Cited Judgements :-

BHAGWANDAS PAWAIYA VS. REGISTERED FIRM KAILASH NARAYAN AND BROS GWALIOR [LAWS(MPH)-1990-12-10] [REFERRED TO]
ALEAMMA VS. SETH MEGHRAJ [LAWS(MPH)-1992-9-7] [REFERRED TO]
GODHARAM VS. VASUDEV PRASAD SHARMA [LAWS(MPH)-1993-8-10] [REFERRED TO]
A K S HABIB MOHAMMED SULTAN VS. NAINSUKHDAS BALDEVDAS [LAWS(MAD)-1998-12-16] [REFERRED TO]
JANARDAN J SHINKRE VS. RUKMINIBAI P SHET NAGWEKAR [LAWS(BOM)-1994-8-64] [REFERRED TO]
PETER GONSALVES VS. VIJAYANAND RAGHUNATH HEDE [LAWS(BOM)-1994-9-19] [REFERRED TO]
KAYIKATTIL RAJAGOPALAN VS. VALIYAPARAMBATH GOPALAN [LAWS(KER)-2003-10-78] [REFERRED TO]
KARAM NATH VS. GURBUX SINGH JUNEJA [LAWS(P&H)-2007-9-17] [REFERRED TO]
MOHINDER SINGH VS. SURINDER KAUR [LAWS(P&H)-2007-1-27] [REFERRED TO]
VIRENDER SINGH VS. MAHABIR SINGH [LAWS(P&H)-2005-8-43] [REFERRED TO]
BRIJ MOHAN VS. BRAHMA NAND [LAWS(HPH)-2001-9-18] [REFERRED TO]
AJIT SINGH VS. RAM LILA SABHA [LAWS(P&H)-2012-1-141] [REFERRED TO]
KESHAV SOOD AND ORS. VS. SURINDER NATH AND ORS. [LAWS(HPH)-2010-11-511] [REFERRED TO]
RASHIK KUMAR VS. VIRENDRA KUMAR AND ANR. [LAWS(ALL)-2010-11-396] [REFERRED TO]
PRADEEP LOHADE DIED PER L RS VS. RADHIKA AGANVIL [LAWS(APH)-2011-9-90] [REFERRED TO]
EBRAHIM ISMAIL KUNJU VS. PHASILA BEEVI [LAWS(KER)-1991-3-31] [REFERRED TO]
JACOB VARKEY VS. IDUKKI DISTRICT CO OPERATIVE BANK LIMITED [LAWS(KER)-2001-4-15] [REFERRED]
MICHAEALS CATHEDRAL CATHOLIC CLUB VS. HARBANS KAUR NAYANI [LAWS(HPH)-1996-9-26] [REFERRED TO]
RAJAGOPALAN VS. GOPALAN [LAWS(KER)-2003-10-87] [REFERRED TO]
PAWANJIT KUMAR VS. JYOTI RANI [LAWS(P&H)-2014-3-456] [REFERRED TO]
KAYIKATTIL RAJAGOPALAN VS. GOPALAN [LAWS(KER)-2003-10-88] [REFERRED TO]
MOHINDER KUMAR WALIA AND ORS. VS. PRAKASHO DEVI AND ORS. [LAWS(HPH)-2016-7-38] [REFERRED TO]
SHARDA SAHAKARI MUDRANALAYA MARYADIT & ORS VS. SURESHCHAND & OTHERS [LAWS(MPH)-2013-9-448] [REFERRED]
HEM RAJ VS. MANVEEN KAUR [LAWS(P&H)-2018-1-321] [REFERRED TO]
PUSHPA SAHU VS. STATE OF CHHATTISGARH [LAWS(CHH)-2021-9-24] [REFERRED TO]


JUDGEMENT

Sharma, J. - (1.)This appeal by a tenant defendant is directed against the decree for his eviction from a shop on the ground mentioned in S. 13(2)(v) of the East Punjab Urban Rent Restriction Act, 1949 (hereinafter referred to as the Act) which renders the tenant liable for eviction if he has ceased to occupy the rented premises for a continuous period of four months without reasonable cause. The questions which are involved in this case are whether a tenant can be said to have ceased to occupy a building merely for the reason that he temporarily suspends tire actual physical user thereof, and whether a landlord is entitled to a decree even if the tenant has re-occupied the premises before the eviction proceeding was commenced.
(2.)The landlord-respondent filed the present application for eviction of the appellant before the rent controller in March, 1973 and inter alia pleaded that for a continuous period of more than four months the appellant had ceased to occupy the shop during 1969 to 1971 and he was, therefore, liable to be ejected. The appellant disputed the allegation, but, the rent controller as well as the Appellate Authority rejected the defence and accepted the plaintiffs plea. After unsuccessfully moving the High Court under S. 15(5) of the Act, the tenant had filed the present appeal by special leave.
(3.)The grounds on which a tenant can be asked to quit are mentioned under S. 13(2) of the Act, and under clause (v) thereof the controller may pass an order for the tenant's eviction if he is satisfied,
"13(2)(v):That where the building is situated in a place other than a hill-station, the tenant has ceased to occupy the building for, a continuous period of four months without reasonable cause,"
Mrs. Urmila Kapoor appearing in support of the appeal contended that the appellant has all along been in possession of the shop which was never vacated and merely for the reason that the shop remained closed for a temporary period he can not be said to have ceased to occupy the same. The argument is that the appellant's occupation of the shop was never interrupted as it was in his effective control, although closed and secured under the appellant's lock which nobody ever disturbed. We do not find ourselves in a position to accept he interpretation of the section as attempted on behalf of the appellant. The reason of including the clause (v) in S. 13(2) is to ensure that buildings, which are scarce in number specially in the towns, necessitating rent control legislation, do not remain unused at the instance of tenants who do not actually need them. A tenant Who is in possession of a building in the legal sense only cannot be said to be in occupation thereof for the purpose of S. 13(2)(v) ; otherwise a question of his eviction as envisaged in that section would not arise. The section, by making provisions for his ejectment, assumes that he is in possession, but, still includes cessation of occupation as one of the grounds. The clause, therefore, has to be interpreted in this back ground and it must take colour from the context. We, therefore, hold that if a tenant stops the business which he is carrying on in a shop and closes the premises continuously for a period of four months without a reasonable, cause he will be liable for eviction.
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