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Plea In Supreme Court For Restraining Landlords From Demanding Rent From Students/ Labour Class Tenants [Read Petition]

Akshita Saxena
19 April 2020 12:08 PM GMT
Plea In Supreme Court For Restraining Landlords From Demanding Rent From Students/ Labour Class Tenants [Read Petition]
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A plea has been filed before the Supreme Court raising concerns over the persistent demand for rent by the landlords from their student/ labour class tenants, amid the lockdown. The PIL has been filed by a practicing Advocate of Delhi Pawan Prakash Pathak and a Final Year Law student of Campus Law Centre, Delhi, Abhijeet, seeking enforcement of the Center's advisory restraining...

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A plea has been filed before the Supreme Court raising concerns over the persistent demand for rent by the landlords from their student/ labour class tenants, amid the lockdown.

The PIL has been filed by a practicing Advocate of Delhi Pawan Prakash Pathak and a Final Year Law student of Campus Law Centre, Delhi, Abhijeet, seeking enforcement of the Center's advisory restraining all landlord from forcing labours & student to vacate their premises in case they fail to pay rent during the lockdown period.

The Petitioners pointed out that despite the advisory, various instances have been reported where landlords are forcing the above class citizens to vacate the premises or being threatened to be thrown out of their premises

They submitted,

"various State's in India are hub for students like Delhi, Mumbai, Kota City, Chennai and with mass population is constituted by students & labour's in these cities and they are comparatively lower on income scale as well and with extension of lock-down till 03rd May, 2020 the above class is facing issue of paying rental accommodation as the source of income during this period is Nil and savings with these families are minimal, where as for food they are dependent upon the services extended by the govt in there local area through fair price shops & other NGO Help."

The Petitioners further averred that many students live in Private PG across the city and for food they depend on the meals provided by the PG owners, and for that they pay a fixed amount per month which is in included in the rent. However, during the lockdown the PG owners are not providing food due to restrictions on movement but still PG owners are demanding the same rent which they usually charge when they provide the Meal to the students.

In this context the plea added,

"majority of the parents are self-employed and because this pandemic has also created a dent in their income they are forced to cope up by spending whatever minimum savings they have accumulated. There being high uncertainty as to when this lock down would end and normalcy would be restored so any demand for rent by the landlords would further aggravate the situation but also lead to undue harassment and embarrassment to the students."

In these circumstances, the Petitioners submitted, the students and the labour class are living in constant fear and depressions.

"suffering from financial crisis due to the lockdown, in such situation one is only left with one option i.e opportunity cost of money, either one can pay rent out of same amount or one can buy essential ration/food for family during this period," the plea remarked.

Thus asserting the enforcement of the Fundamental right to life of students and labours under Article 21 of the Constitution, the Petitioners have sought strict enforcement of the government advisory for restraining demand of rent from students and labours and further that quick response be taken on eviction reporting by tenants amid COVID 19.

The said advisory was issued by the Union Ministry of Home Affair last month under the Disaster Management Act 2005.

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