Calcutta High Court Judgments on Tenancy Issues

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  1. The Civil Judge exercising jurisdiction under Section 7 of the l997 Act does not have the jurisdiction to entertain any application for extension of time to deposit the amount  adjudicated by the original order passed under sub-section 7(2) after expiry of the period stipulated by the original order (Also available at [2016 (1) CLJ (Cal) 551])
  2. A close scrutiny of Section 7 of the West Bengal Premises Tenancy Act, 1997 would reveal that there is nothing in the section providing extension of time or condonation of default. Of course under the proviso to subsection (2) of Section 7, the Court is vested with power to allow an extension of time only once and “the period of such extension shall not exceed two months”. Thus the time-limits specified in clauses (b) and (c) of sub-section (1) as well as in sub-section (2) and the proviso to the said sub-section are conclusive and mandatory. Such time-limits cannot be extended or delay in default cannot be condoned (Also available at [2016(1) CLJ (Cal)202])
  3. In our view, even availability of accommodation in the flat held by the landlord’s son cannot be regarded as an alternative suitable accommodation for the plaintiff as the plaintiff cannot be compelled to move to his son’s flat when he has his own flat in the suit house [Also available at AIR 2015 (NOC) 1203 (Cal.)]
  4. The prayers in the plaint filed by the appellant indicate that the appellant is seeking a declaration of his title vis-à-vis the suit property. Such a declaration can obviously not be granted by the Controller who is only empowered to ascertain which part of the premises are tenanted and which part is in occupation of the sub-tenant [Also available at 2016(1) CLJ (CAL) 300]
  5. It would be more appropriate that the right of a landlord to recover possession of the tenanted premises from the trespasser who has forcibly dispossessed the tenant be seen as a right conferred by the expression “he or any person claiming through him may, by suit, recover possession thereof” appearing in Section 6(1) of the said Act. The dispossession has to be of the person in possession, but the action may be instituted by a person who has been dispossessed or by any person claiming through the person who has been dispossessed. The landlord of the dispossessed tenant can, in such circumstances and by virtue of the locus recognised in the relevant expression, be entitled to recover possession from the trespasser who has forcibly dispossessed the tenant otherwise than in due course of law [Also available at AIR 2015 (NOC) 662 (CAL)]
  6. Section 6 of the West Bengal Premises Tenancy Act, 1997 does not contemplate any notice to be given to the tenant when the tenancy has been extinguished in the above manner. Notice is required when eviction is sought on one or more of the grounds mentioned in section 6 of the said Act [Also available at (2013) 2 WBLR (Cal) 264]
  7. None of these judgments have laid down the contrary proposition so far as the power of the Appellate Court to direct the Appellant to pay the higher amount as occupational charges for enjoying an order of stay of the execution proceeding pending the appeal. The quantum of occupational charges is not static but depends upon the various factors which could be reasonably ascertained from the aforesaid decisions. Though, the Appellate Court is within its power and jurisdiction to direct the Appellant to pay the occupational charges at the prevalent market rent but at the same time the Court should not arbitrarily fix the quantum which in other way operate harshly upon the Appellant and the order appears to be punitive and in terrorem. In absence of any material before the Appellate Court on the prevalent market rent, the Appellate Court can apply robust common sense, the common knowledge of human affairs and events gained by the judicial experience and judicially noticeable facts [Also available at 2016 (2) CLJ (Cal) 166]
  8. As such, the tenancy of the sub-tenant under his landlord comes to an end with the passing of the eviction decree against him. As such, the said benefit which was extended only to the existing subtenant who is in possession as subtenant in the portion let out to him, cannot be extended to the petitioner after passing of an eviction decree against him [Also available at 2015 (2) CLJ (Cal) 181]
  9. The landlord of the dispossessed tenant can, in such circumstances and by virtue of the locus recognised in the relevant expression, be entitled to recover possession from the trespasser who has forcibly dispossessed the tenant otherwise than in due course of law [Also available at  2015 (2) CLJ (Cal) 293]
  10. In my view, Section 44 of the 1997 Act should be read to mean that a Civil Court shall not have the jurisdiction to entertain an original or independent suit or proceeding by the tenant for effecting repairs to the premises in question. However if a civil suit is already pending between the landlord and the tenant, it is the Civil Court in seisin of that suit which alone will have jurisdiction in the matter of repairs to the premises [Also available at 2015 (2) CLJ (Cal) 337]
  11. The law on the issue can be summarized to the effect that where a case has been presented in the court beyond limitation, the applicant has to explain the court as to what was the “sufficient cause” which means an adequate and enough reason which prevented him to approach the court within limitation. In case a party is found to be negligent, or for what of bona fide on his part in the facts and circumstances of the case, or found to have not acted diligently or remained inactive, there cannot be a justified ground to condone the delay. No court could be justified in condoning such an inordinate delay by imposing any condition whatsoever. The application is to be decided only within the parameters laid down by this court in regard to the condonation of delay. In case there was no sufficient cause to prevent a litigant to approach the court on time condoning the delay without any justification, putting any condition whatsoever, amounts to passing an order in violation of the statutory provisions and it tantamounts to showing utter disregard to the legislature.[Also available at 2016(2) CLJ (Cal)  641]
  12. From the bare reading of Section 83 (1) and Section 85 of the Waqf Act, 2013 it is crystal clear that nowhere it is mentioned that the Civil Court jurisdiction has been waived, excluded or barred by those sections. In my considered view if it is an ejectment/eviction suit of the Waqf property and no dispute raised which are specified in Section 6 and 7 of the Act, then the suit for eviction against the tenant relating to a Waqf property is very much within the domain of Civil Court and not within the jurisdiction of Waqf Tribunal [Also available at 2016 (3) CLJ (Cal) 69]

Source: Official Website of WBJA, Last Updated on 14-11-2017

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