45. Procedure to be followed by Rent Authority.-
(1) No order which prejudicially affects any person shall be made by the Rent Authority under this Act without giving him a reasonable opportunity of showing cause against the order proposed to be made and until his objections, if any, and any evidence he may produce in support of the same have been considered by the Rent Authority.
(2) Subject to any rules that may be made under this Act and the other provisions of this Act, the Rent Authority shall, while holding an inquiry in any proceeding before him, follow as far as may be the practice and procedure of a court of small causes, including the recording of evidence.
(3) The Rent Authority shall not ordinarily allow more than three adjournments at the request of a party throughout the proceedings and in case he decides to do so, he shall inform the Chairman the reasons therefor and order to pay the other party the reasonable cost.
(4) The Rent Authority shall issue summons in relation to every application under this Act in the form specified in Schedule IV.
(5) The Rent Authority shall, in addition to, and simultaneously with the issue of summons for service on the opposite party, also direct the summons to be served by registered post, acknowledgment due, addressed to the opposite party or his agent empowered to accept the service at the place where the opposite party or his agent actually and voluntarily resides or carries on business or personally works for gain and may, if the circumstances of the case so require, also direct the publication of the summons in a newspaper circulating in the locality in which the opposite party is last known to have resided or carried on business or personally worked for gain.
(6) When an acknowledgment purporting to be signed by the opposite party or his agent is received by the Rent Authority or the registered article containing the summons is received back with an endorsement purporting to have been made by a postal employee to the effect that the opposite party or his agent had refused to take delivery of the registered article, the Rent Authority may declare that there has been a valid service of summons.
(7) (a) An application under section 21 shall be dealt with in accordance with the procedure specified in this sub-section.
(b) The Rent Authority shall commence the hearing of the application within seven days of the filing thereof and shall dispose of the same within thirty days of starting of such hearing, failing such commencement of hearing or disposal of application within such time, the Rent Authority shall inform the Chairman of the Tribunal the reasons therefor.
(8) (a) Every application by a landlord for the recovery of possession of any premises on the ground specified in clause (e) or clause (f) or clause (r) of sub-section (2) of section 22, or under section 23, or under section 24, or under section 25, or under section 26, or under section 33, shall be dealt with in accordance with the procedure specified in this sub-section.
(b) The tenant on whom the summons is duly served (whether in the ordinary way or by registered post) in the form specified in Schedule IV shall not contest the prayer for eviction from the premises unless he files an affidavit stating the grounds on which he seeks to contest the application for eviction and obtains leave from the Rent Authority as hereinafter provided; and in default of his appearance in pursuance of the summons or his obtaining such leave, the statement made by the landlord in the application for eviction shall be deemed to be admitted by the tenant and the applicant shall be entitled to an order for eviction on the ground aforesaid.
(c) The Rent Authority shall give to the tenant leave to contest the application if the affidavit filed by the tenant discloses such facts as would disentitle the landlord from obtaining an order for the recovery of possession of the premises.
(d) Where leave is granted to the tenant to contest the application, the Rent Authority shall ordinarily commence the hearing of the application within seven days of the grant of such leave and shall provide day to day hearing and shall dispose of the application within thirty days of starting of such hearing, failing such commencement of hearing or disposal of application within such time, the Rent Authority shall inform the Chairman of the Tribunal the reasons therefor.
(e) Where the leave to contest under clause (c) is denied to the tenant, he may file an application for review before the Rent Authority within ten days of such denial and the Rent Authority shall endeavour to dispose of such application within seven days of its filing.
(9) Every application made to the Rent Authority shall be heard as expeditiously as possible and, subject to the provisions of sub-sections (7) and (8), endeavour shall be made to conclude the hearing and to dispose of the application within six months of it being filed.
(10) In all proceedings before him, the Rent Authority shall consider the question of costs and award such costs to or against any party as that Rent Authority considers reasonable.