Inheritance of Statutory Tenancy: Damadi Lal & Ors. vs Parash Ram & Ors.

The Supreme Court of India has delivered a significant judgment in the case of Damadi Lal & Ors. vs Parash Ram & Ors. regarding the inheritance of statutory tenancy. The case revolved around the heritability of statutory tenancy under the Rent Act. Legal representatives of the statutory tenant were found to be entitled to continue as tenants, as per Section 5(11)(c)(ii) of the Act. The courts examined the evidence to establish the relationship between the parties and grounds for eviction. Stay informed about your legal rights and statutory tenancy laws. #SupremeCourt #LegalRights #StatutoryTenancy


  • Both appeals were taken together for hearing and are being disposed of by this common judgment.
  • Defendants No.1 and 2 claimed to be aggrieved by the concurrent judgments and are before the Court in this appeal.
  • The property in question was purchased by the plaintiff under a Sale Deed dated 08.08.1986.
  • Defendants No.1 and 2 opposed the claim made in the plaint on merits and contended that the suit was barred by limitation.
  • Trial Court decreed the suit and directed defendants No.1 to 7 to hand over physical possession of the property and to pay Rs.162/-.
  • Appellate Court dismissed the appeal filed by the defendants No.1 and 2.
  • High Court at Bombay, Bench at Aurangabad, dismissed the revision application filed by defendants No.1 and 2.
  • Defendants No.1 and 2 failed to pay rent to the plaintiff despite being informed about the purchase of the property.
  • Plaintiff termed defendants No.1 and 2 as defaulters and instituted Regular Civil Suit No.253/1989 against them.
  • For the purpose of disposal of the appeals, the parties would be referred to by the same rank assigned to them in the suit.

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  • Plaintiff needs to prove the existence of a tenant-landlord relationship with the defendants.
  • The plaintiff must establish that the defendants are willful defaulters.
  • Evaluate the legality and validity of the suit notice given by the plaintiff.
  • Determine if the suit premises was unused by the defendants for more than 6 months without reasonable cause before the suit was filed.
  • Proof required regarding whether defendants 1 and 2 sub-let a portion of the premises to defendants 3 to 7.
  • Examine if the suit is time-barred under the Law of Limitation.
  • Check for mis-joinder of necessary parties in the suit.
  • Confirm if the suit is properly valued and stamped.
  • Establish if the court has jurisdiction to adjudicate the suit.
  • Deliberation on the entitlement of the plaintiff to receive the amount mentioned in the plaint.
  • Decide if the plaintiff is entitled to obtain physical possession of the property by evicting defendants 1 to 7 and removing structures.
  • Assess if the plaintiff can claim damages from the defendants from the date of the suit until possession is recovered, and determine the appropriate order and decree.

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  • The contention is that in a circumstance where the predecessor was a statutory tenant, on the death of such statutory tenant the tenancy is inheritable by all the legal heirs and all of them were proper and necessary parties.
  • The learned senior advocate referred to Section 5(11)(c)(ii) of the Act to support the argument that all legal representatives of the statutory tenant are entitled to continue as tenants.
  • Referring to the decisions in the case of Damadi Lal & Ors. vs Parash Ram & Ors. 1976(4) SCC 855, it was established that statutory tenancy under the Rent Act is heritable.
  • The suit was filed seeking eviction of tenants and sub-tenants from the premises due to a ban imposed by the Maharashtra Cotton Act.
  • The trial court, lower appellate court, and the High Court upheld the consideration of the nature of the case amidst different contentions raised by the parties.
  • The suit schedule property was leased to the predecessor of defendants No.1 and 2, who are now parties in the case due to the death of the original tenant.
  • Evidence on record was assessed by the trial and appellate courts to establish the relationship between the parties and the grounds for eviction.
  • The defendant No.1’s grandfather was involved in the cotton ginning factory business when the premises were leased.
  • It was claimed that the original tenant had two sisters who were legal heirs but were not made defendants in the case.

Also Read: Jagdishchandra v. Joint Charity Commissioner & Ors.


  • Defendant No.5 did not file a written statement in the suit.
  • Defendants No.3 to 5 were considered trespassers by the trial court.
  • Defendants No.1 and 2 were considered statutory tenants under the Rent Act.
  • Defendants No.1 and 2 did not raise the issue of their sisters’ rights until later.
  • Defendants No.1 and 2 were informed of the purchase of the property by the plaintiff.
  • Legal representatives of Defendant No.5 raised a belated claim of agricultural tenancy.
  • Civil Court jurisdiction was challenged based on the Maharashtra Tenancy and Agricultural Lands Act.
  • The claim of the sisters of Defendants No.1 and 2 was considered an afterthought.
  • Evidence showed lack of joint business involvement with the sisters of Defendants No.1 and 2.
  • Civil Court had jurisdiction to entertain the suit as per the facts presented.
  • The executing court rightfully dismissed the application considering all aspects.
  • Evidence did not conclusively establish Defendant No.5 as an agricultural tenant.
  • Claim of agricultural tenancy was not raised earlier in the legal proceedings.
  • Failure to pay rent and non-use of the property were grounds for eviction.
  • Notification demanding rent payment was issued to Defendants No.1 and 2.
  • On the tillers’ day, the landlord’s interest in the land gets extinguished.
  • In the case of Gian Devi Anand vs Jeevan Kumar & Ors. 1985 (2) SCC 683, it was established that the moment the tillers’ day is reached, the landlord-tenant relationship under common law or the Transfer of Property Act comes to an end.
  • The title of the land originally vested in the landlord is passed to the tenant on the tillers’ day, and this title can only be voided if the tenant fails to appear, states unwillingness to purchase the land, or defaults in payment as determined by the Tribunal.
  • As per the decision in Sri Ram Ram Narain Medhiv vs. State of Bombay [1959 Supp 1 SCR 489, 518-19 : AIR 1959 SC 459 : 1959 SCJ 679], the title of the land immediately transfers to the tenant on the tillers’ day, constituting a completed purchase or sale between the landlord and the tenant.
  • Referring to the case of Uttam vs Saubagh Singh & Ors. 2016 (4) SCC 68, it was highlighted that under the Hindu Succession Act 1956, if a male Hindu dies leaving behind female relatives specified in class 1 of the schedule, those female relatives would have an interest in the coparcenary property.
  • Based on the heritability of statutory tenancy with attached rights, the sisters of specific defendants are also entitled to such rights as per the cited legal provisions.
  • The claim of defendant No.5 based on the MTAL Act needed to be established for their contention to be accepted.
  • Reliance on 7/12 extract alone was not sufficient in this case.
  • Concurrent findings of fact by all three Courts led to the order of eviction of the defendants.
  • The contentions of the defendants were deemed unsustainable by the Court.
  • The judgments in CRA No.112/2012 and CRA No.157/2018 were upheld with no costs.


  • The pending applications have been disposed of.
  • The parties involved in the pending applications have been notified of the decision.


Case Number: C.A. No.-009834-009834 / 2016

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