The Supreme Court has held that in the absence of any negative covenant in the lease agreement restricting the tenant to run business only relating to the purpose for which the premises were let out, the use of the lease premises for other purposes does not amount to ‘user for the purpose other than for which the premises was leased’.
The Apex Court held the above in the matter of Ravi Chand Mangla vs. Dimpal Solania [Civil Appeal No.9598 of 2018 (Arising out of S.L.P. (Civil) No.19594 of 2008)], decided on 18.09.2018
In the instant suit for eviction filed under Section 13 of the Haryana Urban (Control of Rent and Eviction) Act 1973, one of the grounds for eviction was that the tenants have changed the user of the property in dispute.
According to the landlord, the property was let out for the purpose of a sawmill and now the tenant has closed down the sawmill and the work of manufacturing of grills was going on. The Rent Control Court rejected the contention of the landlord that this amounts to change of user. The appellate authority and the high court affirmed this finding observing that tenant has liberty to run any other business activity apart from the saw mill as per the rent agreement.
The Division Bench of the Apex Court rejecting the ‘change of user’ argument observed that there is no restriction placed on the tenant to run business only relating to saw mill. The tenant was given the liberty to carry on any other business as well. In the absence of any negative covenant in the lease agreement, the usage does not amount to user for the purpose other than for which the premises were leased.
The Bench relied upon the judgment of Dashrath Baburao Sangale and Ors. v. Kashimath Bhaskar Data.