If Amin breaks the lock without a specific order: HC

A tenant could approach the lower court for re-delivery of property if an Amin (official in-charge of executing court orders) broke the lock put up on the premises without obtaining a specific order, at the time of executing a court order to deliver the property to the landlord, the Madras High Court Bench here said.

Justice G. Rajasuria disposed of a civil revision petition by a tenant to set aside an order of delivery passed by the Additional District Munsif-cum-Rent Controller here on July 21, 2012.

Refusing to quash the delivery order, the judge said that it would suffice to direct the Munsif to dispose of the petition for re-delivery at the earliest.

“This is a case involving factual appreciation. Already, the tenant has petitioned the very same Executing Court for re-delivery by invoking Section 144 of the Code of Civil Procedure.

In my opinion, that is the proper course open for the tenant/judgement debtor if at all what he said is true or correct,” the judge said and ordered the lower court to dispose of the case within a month.

Ex-parte order

The judge pointed out that the petitioner, M. Hakeem Maideen of Madurai, had taken a shop on rent from G. Murugesan who filed a Rent Control Original Application in 2009 and obtained an ex-parte order in his favour. Thereafter, the tenant filed an application before the same court for condoning a delay of 110 days in filing a petition to get the ex-parte order set aside.

The condone delay petition was dismissed. The tenant filed an appeal against it before the Rent Control Appellate Authority with a delay of 12 days. The authority condoned the delay subject to payment of Rs. 200 as costs. As there was delay in payment of costs, another application was filed to condone this delay.

Landlord files petition

Even as those proceedings were pending, the landlord filed a petition before the Munsif in 2010 with a plea to execute the ex-parte order. The petition was allowed and an order passed for delivery of property with the assistance of the amin.

It was this order which had been challenged by the tenant in the present petition before the High Court.

Closure of shop alleged

Though the petitioner alleged that the shop was closed when the Amin visited the premises for delivering the property and that the latter broke the lock without a specific court order, the landlord denied such allegations and claimed that the shop was very much open but the tenant refused to sign the delivery note prepared by the Amin.

The landlord also claimed that a petition filed by the tenant seeking re-delivery of property was returned by the Munsif only because the High Court was seized of the present case.

Stating that the issue could be resolved only by the lower court, the judge directed the Munsif to number the petition for re-delivery and dispose it of without being influenced by observations made by the High Court.

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