This appeal has been filed before the Honorable Supreme Court pursuing the order passed by the Honorable High Court for dismissal of the prayer made by the appellant with regards to the rent control law. In the matter here in the appellant filing the appeal with this court is a businessman who is involved in the business of textiles, and he has taken two rooms on rent in a building, where the area of the plot is around 60 square feet. One room in the building is on the first floor and the other is on the ground floor. The tenant (here in Appellant) used the room on the ground floor as shop and the other on the first floor as the godown.
The rent paid by the tenant for the room was calculated at Rs. 300 for the room on the ground floor and Rs. 250/- for the room on the first floor. The rent of the respective rooms was later enhanced to Rs. 800/- and Rs. 317/- for the ground floor and the first-floor room respectively. The respondent herein filed a notice for eviction from the property on 11th October 2013. The eviction notice has three claims on which the eviction was sought that were as follows:
- The Appellant did not pay rent for the few months.
- There was a bonfire requirement for additional accommodation of the appellants business.
- The landlord claimed that there was material damage to the premises.
After filing of the petition in the Trial Court by the landlord, the court after a lengthy argument and representation reached a conclusion that the landlord had represented the hardship that he might suffer due to the tenant’s possession of the land weighing more than the tenants' hardship, so the eviction petition was decreed in favour of the landlord.
- Is the reason provided by the landlord regarding additional accommodation of the property valid and tenable?
- Is the observation made by the High Court is according to the law?
The Honorable Supreme Court after hearing the learned counsels representing both the parties in the matter above and considering the facts and the precedents submitted established by the Honorable Judges to support the prayers and pleadings of the parties in the matter above states its observation herein that the Honourable Court has to consider the submission made by the learned counsel stating that section 20 of the Kerala Rent Control Act plays a major role in concluding the matter as considered by the appellate authority and further the High Court cannot set aside the order passed by the appellate authority as such court is second to such appeal and cannot consider the matter fresh or from the start. The High Court as stated by the counsels has acted in its original jurisdiction rather acting in its appellate jurisdiction. Further the High Court also acted in ultra vires manner by producing its powers away from the constitutional provisions and substituting the findings of the appellate authority with the trial court’s finding which an outreach of revision jurisdiction is. Therefore, any conclusion made by the High Court is inconsiderable and cannot find appropriate justice to the cause, thereby violating the right of the parties to matter.
The court finds that referring to the precedents there exists much of ambiguity with regards to the application of the law and some provisions, and it further states that there arises an interpretation issue as well which makes the judgment conflicting with respect to the findings of the lower courts. The primary issue with the interpretation of the words here are legality and prosperity and to the answer the question that whether the High Court has any authority to re-appreciate or re-consider the matter or to substitute the findings at its own peril. Further, the Supreme Court understands the precedents set and established, and the above matter should be dealt with the regular benches of the court by referring the matter of Rukmini Amma Saradamma v/s Kallayni Sulochana.
This court further states that taking into consideration the appellate authority’s finding based on the commissioner’s report regarding the vacancy of some flats in another side of the property cannot be said as an act of perversity. The Honorable High Court rightly decided the matter in one aspect of it with regards to section 11(8) of the Act as this court suggests that there cannot be any interference regarding the question raised and paid by submission made by the appellate authority referring to Building Tax Assessment Registrar. The court will not be at the privilege to take the view that the room in another building which can be used by the tenant. The room suggested in the mater above can only be used by the tenant after he is granted permission to use the property by his mother in law, on some occasions and the room is used by the tenant to store some goods, but such establishment is not his use at his own peril. The court will not allow any interferences with this fact-finding by the appellate authority and nor any High Court has any evidence to validate to the perversity of action of the appellate authority in its revisional jurisdiction. The Honorable Supreme Court finds it difficult to interfere with any arrangement in diverse with the law in this behalf as it is clear that section 11(8) of the Kerala Rent Control Act is different from the section 13(8) of the Bombay Rent Control Act. The former does not allow any partial eviction of the let-out property by the landlord.
This court finds the finding submitted by the High Court not according with objective sought by the Rent Control Act and thus in the above matter, the Supreme Court decides to set aside the order passed by the High Court and decides to confirm the order passed by the Appellate Authority.