A full bench of the High Court of Rajasthan has ruled that orders made by the Rent Tribunal are not subject to the judicial jurisdiction of the High Court under Article 226 of the Constitution. They can only be challenged by invoking the superintendent power of the High Court under Article 227 of the Constitution.
Since rent court orders can only be challenged under section 227, no intra-court appeal is admissible against them, the court added.
A bench of three judges Judges Sangeet Lodha, Inderjeet Singh and Mahendra Kumar Goyal noted that the Rent Tribunal and the Appeals Tribunal, when adjudicating disputes, exercise the judicial power of the state by performing judicial functions, akin to the judicial functions of civil courts.
The Court relied on the Supreme Court’s decision in Radhey Shyam & Ors. Vs. Chhabi Nath & Ors (2015), in which it was categorically held that the judicial orders of the civil court are not subject to subpoena jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India.
The bench was examining two questions that were put to it:
I) If the appeal against the judgment of the Single Court, reversing / upholding the judgment of the Rent Appeal Tribunal and / or the Rent Tribunal, would be admissible in the divisional bench of that court under rule 134 of the rules of the High Court of Rajasthan 1952?
II) If the motion for brief filed against the judgment of the Rent Appeal Tribunal and the Rent Tribunal, by the very nature of the dispute, would be considered to have been filed under article 227 of the Constitution of the India, regardless of the invocation of Article 226 of the Constitution of India in the pleadings?
The appellant-tenant had been in possession of a commercial space since October 2001 belonging to the respondents-tenants. The landlord-respondents brought a petition under section 9 of the Rajasthan Rent Control Act 2001 to the Ajmer Rent Tribunal, seeking the eviction of the appellant-tenant from the leased premises, on the grounds of non-payment of rent for three months in 2005.
The Rent Tribunal found that the Appellant Tenant had defaulted on rent and therefore ordered to be evicted from the premises in question. The appellant-tenant appealed under section 19 (6) of the Act to the Rental Appeals Tribunal, Ajmer, which was also dismissed.
Thus attacking the legality of the judgments of the Rents Tribunal and the Rents Appeal Tribunal, the appellant brought an action allegedly under Articles 226 and 227 of the Constitution of India in this Court, which was rejected.
The appellant-respondent now challenges the legality of the judgment rendered by the Single Judge of this Court by way of intra-court appeal under Rule 134 of the Rules of the High Court of Rajasthan, 1952.
Lawyer Puru Malik, appearing for the owners-respondents, opposes the continuation of an appeal challenging a High Court order made in the exercise of its superintendent power. Therefore, an appeal to the Bench of High Court Division of the judgment of the single judge is not admissible, they argued.
On the contrary, the argument advanced by Senior Advocate Ajeet Kumar Bhandari, representing the appellant-tenant, is threefold:
(a) The power conferred on the High Courts under Article 226 may only be impeded on the basis of a provision of the Constitution, and the Constitution does not impose any constraint on the exercise of this extraordinary discretionary jurisdiction and fair ;
(b) A High Court may exercise its certiorari jurisdiction over all lower courts or judicial and quasi-judicial tribunals where the court or subordinate tribunal is found to have acted without or beyond its jurisdiction or with flagrant disregard. of the law or the rules of procedure or violation of the principles of natural justice.
(c) If the facts justify the filing of a petition under article 226 or 227 of the Constitution and the party chooses to file the petition for both provisions; the court must deal with the petition as presented under article 226, and an injured party cannot be deprived of the right of recourse in court.
The Court has categorically established that it is not in dispute that all lower, quasi-judicial and judicial courts are subject to the certiorari writ of jurisdiction of the High Court where the subordinate Court has acted without jurisdiction, in excess of jurisdiction or in violation of the principles of natural justice. . She also noted that the High Court’s supervisory power over the aforementioned subordinate courts could be exercised to keep them within the limits of their authority.
Referring to a plethora of judgments, he ruled on two important legal questions: (a) Whether an intra-court right of appeal consists in challenging the decision of a single chamber of the High Court to the Bench Division? and (b) whether the Rent Tribunal and the Rent Appeal Tribunal are akin to civil courts and the court orders made by them are not subject to the written jurisdiction of the High Court under section 226 .
Maintainability of intra-judicial appeals:
On the question of the right of recourse intra-tribunal, the Court considered that the judicial decisions of the civil jurisdictions are not susceptible to a writ of certiorari under article 226 of the Constitution. The same can only be challenged under Article 227 of the Constitution. Therefore, no intra-court would be sustainable against the order made by the single judge of the High Court in the proceedings challenging court orders made by the civil court. It relied on the Supreme Court ruling in the case Radhey Shyam & Ors. Vs. Chhabi Nath & Ors (2015) where it took place as under:
“There is no precedent in India for the High Courts to issue subordinate courts. The supervision of the functioning of the subordinate courts in the processing of their court orders is exercised through powers of appeal or review or supervisory power under section 227. Orders of the Civil Court stand on a different footing from orders of authorities or courts or courts other than judicial / civil courts. be governed by the statutes, the power of superintendent under article 227 is constitutional. 26 and 27 cited above. “
Are the Rent Tribunal and the Rent Appeal Tribunal akin to civil courts?
To answer the second question, the Court considered the statutory scheme of the Rajasthan Rent Control Act 2001, including the appeal provision, the prohibition of the second appeal, the scope of review , the constitution of the court of rents and the court of appeal and the procedure for deciding claims. He concluded that the Rent Tribunal and the Rent Tribunal Appeal share the judicial power inherent in the state and have all the attributes / attributes of a civil court. The judicial functions they exercise are similar to the judicial functions exercised by civil courts.
In conclusion, the Court rejected the appellant’s argument that the Rent Tribunal and the Appeal Tribunal are mandated to be presided over by a designated officer with the rank of Civil Judge (Main Division) and District Judge. framework, respectively and, therefore, they are the designated persons not conferring the jurisdiction of any pre-existing court, not to be interpreted as civil courts. He relied on the Life Insurance Corporation of India vs. Nandini J. Shah and others (2018) where it took place,
“Threade Constitution of India can avail itself of the issues described; for the exercise of this competence.
Title: Mahendra Kumar Jain c. Appellate Rent Tribunal & Ors.
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