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Subsequent Eviction Petition Based On Changed Circumstances Not Barred By 'Res Judicata': Punjab & Haryana High Court

Drishti Yadav
2 Aug 2022 9:23 AM GMT
Subsequent Eviction Petition Based On Changed Circumstances Not Barred By Res Judicata: Punjab & Haryana High Court
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Punjab and Haryana High Court recently restored trial Court's finding in eviction petition by the landlord and held that second eviction petition is not barred by the principle of res judicata since it was filed on changed circumstances that were not pleaded earlier in the previous petition. The bench comprising Justice Arvind Singh Sangwan further noted that in the instant...

Punjab and Haryana High Court recently restored trial Court's finding in eviction petition by the landlord and held that second eviction petition is not barred by the principle of res judicata since it was filed on changed circumstances that were not pleaded earlier in the previous petition.

The bench comprising Justice Arvind Singh Sangwan further noted that in the instant case, landlord prayed for eviction on two different grounds, one being bonafide requirement for upgrading the building and second for not being paid the arrears of rent, whereas the earlier petition was only for bona fide necessity.

In the instant case, the petitioner has prayed for eviction on two grounds. Firstly, the premises is required for upgrading the building; and secondly, the tenant is a defaulter and had not paid the arrears of rent, whereas in the earlier petition there was only one requirement of bona fide necessity...the principle of res judicata will not apply in this case as the fresh application is filed on changed circumstances, which were non-existent and not pleaded in the previous case.

Relevant facts that led to the instant petition are, the petitioner/landlord filed a petition under Section 13 of the Haryana Urban (Control of Rent & Eviction) Act, 1973, stating that the respondent is liable to be evicted for not paying arrears of rent and premises being required for the personal necessity. Suit was contested by the respondent/tenant on the ground that earlier rent petition was decided which makes the present petition barred by res judicata under Section 11 CPC.

The Rent Controller decided the issue in favour of the petitioner and held that the petitioner/landlord is entitled for eviction of the respondent.

Accordingly, the Rent Controller decided Issues No.1 and 3 in favour of the petitioner that the petitioner/landlord is entitled for eviction of the respondent.

Regarding the maintainability of the petition, the rent controller decide that the petition is not barred by the principle of res judicata because the earlier judgement did not decide the inter se dispute between the parties and is not binding since it was dismissed for want of evidence.

Under Issue No.2, regarding the maintainability of the petition, it was held that the petition is not barred by the principle of res judicata as on appreciation of the earlier ejectment petition (Ex.P-8) and written statement (Ex.R-9) and on perusal of the judgment dated 08.06.2007 (Ex.R-1) a finding was recorded that the rent petition was dismissed for want of evidence as the petitioner failed to lead any evidence in the said case. It was held by the Rent Controller that the said judgment, which did not decide the inter se dispute between the parties is not binding and therefore, the principle of res judicata does not apply.

Aftermath, the respondent/tenant filed an appeal before the Lower Appellate Court which reversed the findings on Issue No.2 and dismissed the eviction petition filed by the petitioner.

After hearing the counsel for the petitioner and perusal of the record, the court found it appropriate to allow the instant revision petition and accordingly the findings recorded by the Lower Appellate Court were set-aside and that of the trial Court was restored/upheld directing the respondent/tenant to vacate the premises.

Case Title: Shri Jainendra Gurukul Panchkula through its Secretary Versus Dev Raj

Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (PH) 213 

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