HARI KISHAN SINGH AND OTHERS Vs. B. NARAYAN AND OTHERS
HIGH COURT OF ANDHRA PRADESH
Hari Kishan Singh And Others
B. Narayan And Others
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Kuppuswamy, J. -
(1.)The common question that arises for consideration in this batch of revision petitions is whether a Rent Controller to whose file an application under the Andhra Pradesh Buildings (Lease, Rent and Eviction) Control Act (in this judgment referred to as the Act) is transferred, may Act on the evidence of the parties and witnesses examined on either side and recorded by the Rent Controller from whose file the petition has been transferred or whether he should conduct an enquiry de novo.
(2.)In all these cases, the Rent Controller with whom the applications were filed in the first instance recorded the evidence of the witnesses which was read over to them and signed by them. Subsequently, at various stages all the cases were transferred to the file of another Rent Controller, under rule 9 of the Rules framed under the Act. Before that Controller interlocutory applications were filed contending that he should record the evidence afresh and conduct a de novo trial. These applications were dismissed. In all the matters except in G.R.P. Nos. 125 & 2109/65 appeals were preferred against the orders of the Rent Con-roller to the Chief Judge, Small Causes Court. The appeals were dismissed and revision petitions are hied against the said orders. In C.R.P. 125 and 2109/65 however, revision petitions were hied directly against the order of the Rent Controller.
(3.)The main Act does not contain any provision indicating the procedure to be followed by the Rent Controller in dealing with applications filed under the Act, whether they may be for fixation of fair rent or for eviction or in connection with any other matter provided under the Act. It is, however provided under Sec. 30 of the Act that the... Government may by notification in the Andhra Pradesh Gazette, make rules to Carry out the purposes of the Act. Under sub-section 2 (b) of that section without prejudice to the generality of the said powers, such rules may provide for the procedure to be followed by Controllers and appellate authorities in the performance of their functions under this Act. In pursuance of the powers conferred under section 30 the Andhra Pradesh Buildings (Lease, Rent and Eviction) Control Rules 1961 (hereinafter called the 'Rules') were made. The rules which are relevant for the purpose of considering the question before us are the following:
8 (1). When an application under the Act is presented to the Controller he shall fix the date on which and the place at which the inquiry in respect of the application will be held and send notice thereof to the applicant or applicants and the respondent or respondents mentioned in the application and shall also send a copy of the application along with the notice to the respondent or respondents :
Provided that, in the case of applications for evictions filed under sub-section (2) or sub-section (3) of section 10 in respect of buildings of which the State Government or the Central Government are tenants, he shall not be bound to give such notice unless he considers such notice necessary, regard being had to the averments in the petition or any other material circumstances.
(2) The Controller shall give to the parties a reasonable opportunity to state their cases. He shall also record a brief note of the evidence of the parties and witnesses, if any, examined on either side and upon the evidence so recorded and after consideration of any documentary evidence which may be produced by the parties pass orders on the application.
(3) x x x
Rule 22 (7) : The Controller or the appellate authority, as the case may be shall have power to administer oaths, to require the attendance of all parties concerned and of witnesses and require the production of all books and documents relating to the matters of the dispute.
(8) The Controller or the appellate authority deciding the dispute shall record a brief note of the parties and all witnesses who attend, and upon the evidence so recorded and after consideration of any documentary evidence produced by the parties, a decision shall be given in accordance with justice, equity and good conscience by the Controller or appellate authority. The decision given shall be reduced to writing. If any party duly summoned to attend, does not attend, the dispute may be decided ex parte.
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