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PUNJAB NATIONAL BANK v. RAJ KUMAR GUPTA & Ors - CR-5800-2005  RD-P&H 96 (10 August 2005)
Civil Revision No.5800 of 2005
Date of decision:8.11.2005
Punjab National Bank
Raj Kumar Gupta and others
Present: Mr. Jagdish Marwaha, Advocate for the petitioner.
S.S. Saron, J.
The petitioner Punjab National Bank has filed this revision petition under Article 227 of the Constitution of India assailing the order dated 21.9.2005 (Annexure-P.1) passed by the learned Civil Judge (Senior Division), Chandigarh whereby the application filed by the C.R. No.5800/2005
defendant-petitioner under Section 10 of the Code of Civil Procedure (`CPC' for short) for staying the proceedings during the pendency of Regular Second Appeal No.2900 of 1996 titled Punjab National Bank v.
R.K. Gupta pending in this Court has been dismissed.
The plaintiffs-respondents filed suit for recovery of Rs.14,40,000/- as damages for the unauthorized use and occupation of SCO No.54, Sector 26, Chandigarh for the period from 1.8.1990 to 31.7.1993. During the pendency of the suit the defendant-petitioner filed an application (Annexure-P.2) under Section 10 C.P.C. for staying further proceedings in the pending suit. Reply (Annexure-P.3) was filed to the said application. The ground on which stay of the pending proceedings was sought was that RSA No.2900 of 1996 titled Punjab National Bank v.
Raj Kumar Gupta is pending in this Court and was admitted on 13.11.1997. The said regular second appeal relates to claim for arrears of damages for the unauthorized use and occupation of the building in question for the period from 17.12.1984 to 16.12.1987. The earlier civil suit was decided by the learned Sub Judge Ist Class, Chandigarh vide his judgment and decree dated 14.6.1993 (Annexure-P.4). The plaintiffs- respondents claimed arrears of damages to the extent of twice the agreed rate of rent of Rs.9500/- only. The suit was decreed by the trial Court and C.R. No.5800/2005
appeal against the same filed by the defendant-petitioner/Bank was also dismissed and aforesaid RSA No.2900 of 1996 is pending. As such, it was claimed that the controversy which was raised for the first time by the plaintiffs-respondents now is subject matter of the regular second appeal in this Court. The ground of appeal dated 30.10.1996 (Annexure-P.5) have been placed on record. The application having been declined by the learned trial Court, the defendant-petitioner has approached this Court.
Learned counsel for the petitioner contends that the impugned order has been passed without appreciating the facts and circumstances of the case and in view of the pending RSA No.2900 of 1996, the proceedings in the present suit out of which this petition arises are liable to be stayed. It is contended that in fact the proceedings can even be stayed in exercise of the inherent powers of the Court under Section 151 C.P.C.
I have given my thoughtful consideration to the contentions of the learned counsel for the petitioner. The primary ground that has been taken for staying further proceedings in the case before the trial Court is that RSA No.2900 of 1996 is pending in this Court. In order to appreciate the contentions the order admitting the said R.S.A. on 13.11.1997 may be noticed. The same reads as under:- C.R. No.5800/2005
"Admitted. No stay.
Appeal be listed for hearing within a year.
Respondent-landlord would, however, be paid arrears of rent/damages after furnishing adequate security to the satisfaction of trial Judge and in the event the present appeal succeeds, the same shall be returned with 12% interest." A perusal of the above shows that during the pendency of the appeal, no stay has been granted. Rather, a direction has been given that the plaintiffs-respondents would be paid arrears of rent/damages after furnishing adequate security to the satisfaction of the trial Judge and in the event the present appeal succeeds the same would be returned with 12% interest. In the case in hand, the decree for payment of the amount has not been passed and the matter is still pending. The provisions of Section 10 C.P.C. envisages that no Court is to proceed with the trial of any suit in which the matter in issue is also directly and substantially in issue in a previously instituted suit between the same parties. Therefore, generally where a matter in issue is directly and substantially in issue in a previously instituted suit the proceedings in the subsequent suit would be barred. However, in the case in hand, as already noticed, in respect of the substantive relief granted to the plaintiffs-respondents in the previously C.R. No.5800/2005
instituted suit, this Court vide order dated 13.11.1997 passed in RSA No.2900 of 1996 has not granted any stay. Rather, the defendant- petitioner is to pay the arrears of rent/damages after furnishing adequate security. Besides, it is also appropriate to note that cause of action in both the suits is substantially different. In the earlier suit in respect of which RSA is pending in this Court, the plaintiffs-respondents claimed damages for unauthorized use and occupation of the premises in question for the period from 17.12.1984 to 16.12.1987. However, in the present suit in respect of which stay has been sought, the arrears of damages has been claimed for the period from 1.8.1990 to 31.7.1993. Therefore, even though the matter in issue in the previously instituted suit and the present suit are substantially the same, however, the relief claimed in the present suit is founded on a different cause of action. Therefore, where the relief claimed is founded on a different cause of action, the provisions of Section 10 C.P.C. are inapplicable. Even otherwise the impugned order dated 21.9.2005 passed by the learned Civil Judge (Senior Division), Chandigarh does not finally dispose of the matter against which interference of this Court in exercise of its supervisory jurisdiction under Article 227 of the Constitution of India is necessitated. The same is merely an interlocutory order passed during the pendency of the C.R. No.5800/2005
proceedings in the suit and declining to stay further proceedings.
Therefore, the order as passed is not shown to be in any manner illegal or perverse which can be said to have resulted in grave or manifest injustice to the petitioner in which case the exercise of jurisdiction may have been warranted. In the circumstances, there is no error of jurisdiction committed by the learned trial Court in not staying further proceedings in the suit filed by the plaintiffs-respondents which would warrant interference of this Court in exercise of its revisional jurisdiction.
For the foregoing reasons there is no merit in this petition and the same is accordingly dismissed.
November 8, 2005. (S.S. Saron)
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