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Sri Mouna Swamigal Madam Vs. N. Sambandham and Ors. - (High Court of Madras) (25 Apr 2018)

Condition of building is not so essential. If it is shown that building is bona fide required by landlord for immediate purpose of demolition, eviction could be ordered



Aggrieved by the order reversing the order of eviction passed by the Rent Controller, Petitioners, who are trustees of Sri Mouna Swamigal Madam, also known as Manickavasa Swamigal Trust have preferred present revision. The case of the Petitioners is that, though the Respondent denied the rights of the Petitioners over the petition mentioned property, he is liable to be evicted from the petition mentioned premises on the ground of willful default committed by him. According to the Petitioners, since the petition mentioned premises is in dilapidated condition, it requires demolition and reconstruction. Therefore, the Petitioners have filed petition seeking eviction of the sole respondent under Sections 10(2)(i), 10(2)(ii) and 14(i)(b) of the Tamil Nadu Buildings (Lease and Rent Control) Act, 1960.

Tahsildar, Chidambaram has issued certificate to the effect that, the property and the building constructed thereon belong to Thillai Nayagam and Thillai Natarajan, who are trustees of Mounaguruswamigal Madam also known as Manickavasa Swamigal Trust. It is also seen from the records that, property tax was raised in the name of Thillai Nayagam and Thillai Natarajan for the property in Door No. 48B & 48B/1, Pudu Street. Therefore, the learned Rent Controller was right in saying that, the petition mentioned premises belongs to the Petitioners' trust and the Petitioners are the trustees. The Appellate Tribunal has failed to look into the aforesaid material piece of evidence.

The finding of the learned Rent Controller that, the sole Respondent was tenant and had paid rent upto December 1991 and thereafter, he committed payment of rent are based upon the oral and documentary evidence. The learned Rent Controller was also right in holding that, without the permission of the Petitioners, the Respondent has done some construction and therefore, he is liable to be evicted from the petition mentioned premises.

It is settled that, in order to seek eviction of the tenant under Section 14(1)(b) of the Act, it is not necessary that, the building should be in dangerous and dilapidated condition, requiring immediate demolition, though it is necessary to find out the condition of the building. In a number of decisions, it has been held that, condition of the building is not so essential and even if the building may not be much dangerous, if it is shown that, the building is bona fide required by the landlord for immediate purpose of demolition, eviction could be ordered. Admittedly, in the present case, the requirement of the Petitioners is bona fide. But the learned Appellate Tribunal failed to consider the case of the Petitioners.

In cases where the order passed by the Appellate Tribunal is perverse, which had resulted in miscarriage of justice, the High Court is empowered to exercise its power conferred under the said Act. The findings of the Appellate Tribunal are not in proper appreciation of evidence. On erroneous application of principles, the Appellate Tribunal reversed the order of eviction passed by the Rent Controller. Therefore, the order of Appellate Authority suffers from wrong approach and perversity calling for interference. The impugned order of the Appellate Tribunal is set aside and present Civil Revision Petition is allowed. The order of Rent Controller is confirmed.


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