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Firm Panjumal Daulatram Vs. Sakhi Gopal [1977] INSC 135 (3 May 1977)

KRISHNAIYER, V.R.

KRISHNAIYER, V.R.

SARKARIA, RANJIT SINGH, JASWANT

CITATION: 1977 AIR 2077 1977 SCR (3) 767 1977 SCC (3) 284

ACT:

Madhya Pradesh Accommodation Control Act, 1961 S.

12(1)(e) & (f)--Scope of---Bona fide requirement---Requirement of the land-lord of accommodation of both residential and non-residential part of the building, if proved entitled eviction of the tenant.

HEADNOTE:

Under sub clauses (e) and (f) of S. 12(1) of the Madhya Pradesh Accommodation Control Act, 1961, a landlord can evict a tenant, if the residential and the non-residential accommodation respectively let out to the latter is required bona fide by him for occupation as a residence and for the purpose of continuing or starting his business. Accommodation under the Act means any building or part of a building, whether residential or non-residential.

The appellant-tenant was inducted in by the respondent in 1955 for the dual purposes of residential and non-residential purpose of running a cloth shop. The landlord, bona fide required the building for his residence and also for starting his business of running a Chemist shop. The Eviction Suit filed by him was dismissed by the trial court, but the appellant and the High Court ,,ranted him the eviction decree.

Discussing the appeal by special leave, the Court.

HELD: The residential portion as well as a non-residential portion are parts of the building and each is an accommodation by definition. The landlord is entitled to eviction of the "accommodation" if he makes out a bona fide residential and non-residential requirement of the portions.

In the instant case the contract was integral but had dual purpose. The landlord has put forward dual requirements which neatly fit into S. 12(1)(e) and (f) of the Madhya Pradesh Accommodation Control Act, 1961. The findings of the appellate Court regarding the bona fide requirement of the landlord, not having been challenged in the High Court and in this Court in the memorandum of Appeal, the consequence viz. eviction is inevitable. [769 E-G] S. Sanyal v. Gianchand [1968] 1 S.C.R. 536, distinguished.

[The Court, however granted time to the appellants for vacating the building till 1-1-1978, in terms of equity].

CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION: Civil Appeal No. 991/76.

(Appeal by Special Leave from the Judgment and Order dated the 21.1.1976 of the Madhya Pradesh High Court in Second Appeal No. 415 of 1971) S. Choudhury, D.N. Mishra, O.C. Mathur and Shri Narain for the appellant.

G.L. Sanghi, V.K. Sanghi, R.K. Sanghi and S.N. Khanduja for the respondent.

The Judgment of the Court was delivered by KRISHNA IYER, J. A suit for eviction of an accommodation from the tenant to whom it had been let for residential and non-residential 768 purposes resulted in dismissal by the trial Judge. But in an appeal, the final court of fact took the view that the landlord (respondent) was entitled to eviction. The tenant challenged the appellate decree before the High Court in Second Appeal without success and has therefore come up to this Court with this appeal by special leave.

A short point has been raised which deserves only a short answer. Since we agree with the High Court which in turn has agreed with the first appellate court, our judgment can afford to be brief.

A statement of necessary facts may now be given. The landlord had let out the premises, which is a storied building, to be tenant as per Ex. P-1 of 1955. The significant clause in the lease deed runs thus:

"1 XXX

2. I take your house for my own use i.e. for opening a cloth shop and for residential purposes and I will not sublet your house to anybody.

XXX XXX XXX XXX." The tenant has thus put the building to business and residential purposes. The landlord, who is an M. Sc., claimed the building back on the score that he wanted to run a medical store on the ground floor a non-residential purpose---and stay on the first floor with his wife--a residential purpose. Thus the acommodation was let out for dual purposes, was being used presumably for these requirements and was being claimed back by the landlord for the twin purposes mentioned above. The final court of fact has held that the landlord needs the building for his chemist's shop and for his residential use. The High Court in Second Appeal has upheld this finding and added that "the finding as to his bonafide requirement was rightly not challenged before me ......

The conclusion that the courts have reached is the only conclusion possible on the evidence on record in the light of the circumstances appearing." This statement by the High Court that the bonafide requirement of the landlord was not challenged before it has not been questioned in the memorandum of appeal to this Court.

It must therefore be taken that the bonafide need of the landlord is validly made out.

The short point that survives is as to whether the composite purposes of the lease would put it out of the ground set out for eviction under s. 2 of the Madhya Pradesh Accommodation Control Act, 1961. The said Act defines 'accommodation' thus:

" 'accommodation' means any building or part of a building, whether residential or nonresidential and includes,-XX XXX XXX." 769 It follows that an accommodation can be residential, non-residential or both. S. 12 bars an action of eviction of a tenant from any accommodation except on one or more of the grounds set out therein. S. 12(1) (e) and (f), bearing on the present case, may be appropriately extracted here:

"12. Restriction on eviction of tenents (1) (a) to (d) x x x x x (e) that the accommodation let for residential purposes is required bona fide by the landlord for occupation as a residence for himself or for any member of his family, if he is the owner thereof, or for any person for whose benefit the accommodation is held. and that the landlord or such person has no other reasonably suitable residential accommodation of his own in the occupation in the city or town concerned;

(f) that the accommodation let for nonresidential purposes is required bona fide by the landlord for the purpose of continuing or starting his business or that of any of his major sons or unmarried daughters if he is the owner thereof or for any person for whose benefit the accommodation is held and that the landlord or such person has no other reasonably suitable non-residential accommodation of his own in his occupation in the city or town concerned;.

XXX XXX XXX." The residential portion is a part of the building and is an accommodation by definition. The non-residential portion is also a part of the building and is an accommodation by definition. The lease has been given for residential as well as non-residential purposes. The landlord is entitled to eviction of the residential portion if he makes out a bonafide residential requirement.

Likewise he is entitled to eviction of the non-residential portion which is an accommodation if he makes out a non-residential requirement. We have already found that the final court of fact, affirmed by the High Court, has found in favour of the landlord regarding his residential as well as nonresidential requirements. Therefore, nothing more can be done in defence of the tenant in the light of the present law.

Counsel contended that in a decision of this Court, viz, S. Sanyal v. Gian Chand,(1) it has been held that it is not permissible for the court to split up a contract in an eviction proceeding. We agree. There is no question of splitting up of the contract in the present case, as is abundantly plain from what we: have stated. The contract was integral but had dual purposes. The landlord has put forward dual requirements which neatly fit into s. 12(1)(e) and (f). The consequence is inevitable that the eviction order has to be upheld.

(1) [1968] 1 S.C.R. 536.

770 It is seep, that the tenant has been doing a thriving cloth business, with goodwill attached to it, for well knigh 30 years. It is therefore but fair that the. tenant is given sometime to rehabilitate himself by securing an alternative but suitable accommodation. In our towns where scarcity of accommodation is the rule it is not that easy to secure alternative premises. Taking due note of this reality, we direct that while dismissing the appeal the eviction order shall not be put into execution before 1st January, 1978.

Parties will bear their respective costs.

S.R. Appeal dismissed.

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