In order to constitute an act of denial of title, it must be established that the tenant has, through his express acts, conveyed to the landlord that he is not the owner of the property or that he is disputing his title either by setting up title in himself or in someone else. No such act was committed by the original tenant in issuing Ex.B.2- Notice.= Before parting with this case, it needs to be mentioned that when the case was heard by this Court on 04-10-2012, Mr.M.Chalapathi Rao, learned Counsel appearing for the respondent, brought to the notice of this Court that the petitioners are paying a meagre sum of Rs.300/- per month as rent for over 30 years. Having regard to this admitted fact, this Court has called upon the learned Counsel for the petitioners to advise his clients to enhance the rent to a reasonable extent to obviate the necessity of the respondents to approach the Rent Controller for fixation of fair rent. Today, Sri P.Gangarami Reddy, learned Counsel for the petitioners, on instructions, submitted that his clients are willing for payment of two or three times the existing rent. Even though this aspect is not the subject matter of this Civil Revision Petition, in order to protect the interests of the respondents as the continuance of the petitioners with the same rent, which is being paid for the last 30 years, is unfair and unreasonable, this Court directs the petitioners to pay Rs.1500/- per month from November, 2012, pro tempore subject to the right of the respondent to approach the Rent Controller for fixation of fair rent. This ad hoc rent cannot be construed as this Court expressing final opinion on the precise quantum of rent, which the respondent is entitled to receive from the petitioners.


The Hon'ble Sri Justice C.V.Nagarjuna Reddy

Civil Revision Petition No.2327 of 2012

11-10-2012

Immadisetty Nagaratnamma (died) per LRs Immadisetty Mallikarjuna Rao and 5  
others.

Gostu Prameelamma  

^Counsel for the petitioners: Sri P.Gangarami Reddy

!Counsel for the respondent: Sri M.Chalapathi Rao

<Gist:

>Head Note:

?Cases referred:
                NIL

Order:
        This Civil Revision Petition arises out of Order, dated
30-03-2012, in RCA.No.6 of 2010, on the file of the Court of the learned
Principal Senior Civil Judge, Nellore, whereby she has confirmed Order, dated
20-07-2010, in RCC.No.28 of 1990, on the file of the Court of the learned Rent
Controller-cum-Principal Junior Civil Judge, Nellore.
        The respondent, who is the landlady, filed RCC.No.28 of 1990 against the
husband of late Immadisetty Nagaratnamma, who was the original tenant, in the
Court of the learned Rent Controller-cum- Principal Junior Civil Judge, Nellore,
for his eviction under Sections 10 (2) (i), 10 (2) (v) and 10 (3) (iii) of the
Andhra Pradesh Buildings (Lease, Rent and Eviction) Control Act, 1960 (for short
'the Act').  During the pendency of the Rent Control Case, the original tenant
died and Immadisetty Nagaratnamma, who is the wife of the original tenant, and
the petitioners herein were brought on record in his place.  By Order, dated 07-
11-2001, the Rent Control Case was dismissed by negativing all the pleas of
willful default, the tenant securing alternative accommodation and the landlady
having bona fide requirement.  Feeling aggrieved by the said Order, the
respondent filed CMA.No.2 of 2002 before the learned Principal Senior Civil
Judge, Nellore.  Before the appellate Court, it was pleaded on behalf of the
landlady that as the original tenant has denied the title of the landlady, he
was liable for eviction only on that ground under Section 10 (2) (vi) of the
Act.  This plea was considered by the lower Appellate Court and the case was
remanded to the learned Rent Controller for consideration of the said plea by
its Judgment, dated 01-03-2006.  After remand, the learned Rent Controller
allowed the Rent Control Case by Order, dated 20-07-2010, only on the ground
that the original tenant has denied the title of the landlady and that the same
is not bona fide.  Immadisetty Nagaratnamma and the petitioners herein carried
the mater in appeal, which was taken on file as RCA No.6 of 2010 on the file of
the learned Principal Senior Civil Judge, Nellore.  During the pendency of the
said appeal, Immadisetty Nagaratnamma died.  By Judgment, dated 30-03-2012, the
learned Principal Senior Civil Judge, dismissed the RCA confirming the order of
the learned Rent Controller.  Assailing both these Orders, the present Civil
Revision Petition is filed by the petitioners.
        I have heard Mr.P.Ganga Rami Reddy, learned Counsel for the petitioners,
and Mr.M.Chalapathi Rao, learned Counsel for the respondent.
The only issue that arises for consideration in this Civil Revision Petition is
whether there was denial of title by the original tenant and if so, the same is
bona fide.   The brief background of the case needs to be referred in this
context.   The original tenant has received notice, dated 29-10-1989 (Ex.B.1)
from the Executive Officer of Sri Talpagiri Ranganadha Swamy Temple,
Ranganayakulapet, Nellore Town, wherein he has claimed that the said Temple is
the owner of the premises in occupation of the original tenant and he was,
thereby, called upon to pay the rents to him instead of to the respondent.  On
receipt of the said notice, the original tenant addressed letter, dated 04-11-
1989 (Ex.B.2) to the respondent, informing her that he has received Ex.B.1-
notice from the Temple referred to above on 03-11-1989 whereunder he was asked
to pay rents to its Executive Officer and that he is going to pay the rents
accordingly to the Temple and requested the landlady to send her comments in
that regard.  In reply thereto, the respondent- landlady has sent letter, dated
09-11-1989, (Ex.A.26) asking the original tenant to continue to pay the rents to
her and not to the Temple.  Obviously, caught in this cross fire, the original
tenant has filed an application before the Rent Controller under Section 9(3) of
the Act, which was registered as RCC.No.80 of 1989 on 06-12-1989 for permission
to deposit the rents.  The original tenant impleaded the respondent herein and
the Temple as the respondents in the said case.  After receiving permission from
the Rent Controller, the original tenant started depositing the rents into the
Court. It is in this backdrop that the plea of the respondent that the original
tenant has denied her title needs to be considered.
        Under Section 10 (2) (vi) of the Act, denial of title of the landlord by
the tenant or claiming a right of permanent tenancy, which is not
bona fide, is enumerated as a ground for eviction.
        In Paragraph 8 of the amended petition in RCC.28 of 1990, the respondent
has pleaded as under:
        "The petitioner has been demanding the respondent to vacate the premises
on the ground of personal requirement.  While promising to vacate, he filed
RCC.No.80 of 1989 on the file of the Court for permission to deposit the rents
disputing the title of the petitioner in respect of the petition schedule
premises.  The petitioner had filed a counter to the said petition and the same
is pending.  The respondent had thus denied the title of the petitioner to the
petition schedule premises and the said denial is not bonafide but made with
malafide intentions."

        In the amended counter-affidavit filed by the original tenant, he has
averred as under:
        "This respondent states that the father of the petitioner Chinni
Veeraswamy and of Seshaiah let out the petition schedule premises to this
respondent on a monthly rent of Rs.225/- only in the year 1972 and he has also
paid an advance of Rs.500/- for the due performancy of tenancy.  The landlord
after a period of three years on the paid of termination of tenancy increased
the rent to one of Rs.250/- only.  The petitioner's father died leaving behind
the petitioner as has adopted daughter.  This respondent was paying rents to the
petitioner regularly.  The petitioner is her term during the year 1983 on the
pain or termination of tenancy unilaterally enhanced the rent to one of Rs.300/-
only.  This respondent is paying rent to the petitioner regularly and obtaining
receipts from herself or her sons.
        It is absolutely false to state that this respondent denied the title of
the petitioner and he has bona fide approached the Court to save from the devil
and the deep sea occassioned by the counter-claims of the State and the
landlord."

Both the Courts below have held that by issuing Ex.B.2- notice and approaching
the Rent Controller by way of RCC.No.80 of 1989, the original tenant has denied
the title of the landlady and that the same is not bona fide.  Having given my
earnest consideration to these findings with reference to the above-noted facts,
I am of the opinion that the findings of both the Courts below suffer from
serious infirmity.  The occasion for the original tenant to issue Ex.B.2- Notice
as noted above was Ex.B.1- Notice issued by the Executive Officer of Sri
Talpagiri Ranganadha Swamy Temple, Ranganayakulapet.  As a conscientious person,    
the original tenant has promptly addressed letter to the respondent by bringing
the said fact to her notice and inviting her comments on his proposal to pay the
rents to the Temple.  Stretching this notice to any extent, the same cannot be
construed as the original tenant denying the title of the landlady.  Even after
issuing Ex.B.2- notice, the original tenant has not paid the rent to the Temple.
As soon as he has received Ex.A.26- reply from the respondent, he has approached 
the learned Rent Controller by filing RCC.No.80 of 1989 under Section 9(3) of
the Act.  This, by itself, would indicate that the original tenant, who was
drawn into a deep state of dilemma caught between the devil and the deep sea,
has taken recourse to approaching the Rent Controller as he was unable to decide
as to who was the real owner of the subject premises.  It is really
incomprehensible that both the Courts below have treated this act of the
original tenant as the denial of title of the respondent.  In order to
constitute an act of denial of title, it must be established that the tenant
has, through his express acts, conveyed to the landlord that he is not the owner
of the property or that he is disputing his title either by setting up title in
himself or in someone else.  No such act was committed by the original tenant in
issuing Ex.B.2- Notice.  On a holistic consideration of the case, I am of the
opinion that the conclusion drawn by both the Fora below are based on perverse
appreciation of facts.  Therefore, both the orders under revision are set aside.
        Before parting with this case, it needs to be mentioned that when the case
was heard by this Court on 04-10-2012, Mr.M.Chalapathi Rao, learned Counsel 
appearing for the respondent, brought to the notice of this Court that the
petitioners are paying a meagre sum of Rs.300/- per month as rent for over 30
years.  Having regard to this admitted fact, this Court has called upon the
learned Counsel for the petitioners to advise his clients to enhance the rent to
a reasonable extent to obviate the necessity of the respondents to approach the
Rent Controller for fixation of fair rent.  Today, Sri P.Gangarami Reddy,
learned Counsel for the petitioners, on instructions, submitted that his clients
are willing for payment of two or three times the existing rent.  Even though
this aspect is not the subject matter of this Civil Revision Petition, in order
to protect the interests of the respondents as the continuance of the
petitioners with the same rent, which is being paid for the last 30 years, is
unfair and unreasonable, this Court directs the petitioners to pay Rs.1500/- per
month from November, 2012, pro tempore subject to the right of the respondent to
approach the Rent Controller for fixation of fair rent.  This ad hoc rent cannot
be construed as this Court expressing final opinion on the precise quantum of
rent, which the respondent is entitled to receive from the petitioners.
        Subject to the above direction, the Civil Revision Petition is allowed.
        As a sequel, interim order, dated 11-06-2012, is vacated and
CRPMP.Nos.3102 and 4934 of 2012 are disposed of.  
_________________________  
(C.V.Nagarjuna Reddy, J)
Date: 11-10-2012

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