Court: PUNJAB AND HARYANA HIGH COURT
Bench: JUSTICE M.M.S. BEDI
Mrs. Manju Sharma vs Dr. J.C. Mehta On 29 February 2012
Daughter in Law Does Not Have a Right to Stay in Property in Dispute and Cause a Nuisance to Old Couple (FIL and MIL). Ordered to Vacate the Premises.
The defendant- petitioner is daughter-in-law of plaintiff- respondents No.1 and 2. The plaintiff- respondents have filed a suit for declaration that defendant-petitioner has got no right to reside and use any portion of house No.108, Sector 23-A, Chandigarh as plaintiff- respondent No.1 is the exclusive owner of the said house, besides seeking a mandatory injunction directing the defendant- petitioner to vacate the premises belonging to the plaintiffs on providing of a reasonable and suitable C.R. No. 6895 of 2011 (O&M)  accommodation to the petitioner during the pendency of the suit. The defendant- petitioner is in possession of one bed room which is shown as ABCD in the site plan. Alongwith the suit, an application under Order 39 Rules 1 and 2 CPC for interim mandatory injunction has been filed by the plaintiff- respondents for a direction to the defendant- petitioner to vacate the premises on providing of a reasonable and suitable alternative accommodation to the defendant during the pendency of the case.
The trial Court vide order dated May 27, 2011 passed an ad- interim mandatory injunction order directing the defendant- petitioner to vacate the portion of the house in her possession on their providing alternative reasonable accommodation to her during the pendency of the case, taking into consideration the fact that the defendant- petitioner is none-else but daughter-in-law of the plaintiffs whose son has left for Australia leaving her to live with his parents.
In an appeal filed by defendant- petitioner, the lower Appellate Court vide order dated October 7, 2011 held that it is none of the liabilities of the plaintiff – respondents to provide alternative accommodation to the defendant as defendant is otherwise a working lady and must be possessed of all the means to maintain herself and her residence and that prima facie, the parents-in-law of petitioner have got no liability to provide accommodation to defendant as such allowed the appeal directing the defendant- petitioner to vacate the room marked ABCD in the site plan.
C.R. No. 6895 of 2011 (O&M)  Aggrieved by the order dated October 7, 2011 passed by the lower Appellate Court, the defendant- petitioner has preferred this revision petition under Article 227 of the Constitution of India, claiming that the defendant- petitioner is in possession of her matrimonial home and that her husband has permitted her to set up the matrimonial home in the premises in question. The plaintiffs have not claimed any relief against the petitioner’s husband and that the rights of the petitioner to occupy the premises in question are protected under Sections 18 and 19 of Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act and that she has also got a right of maintenance which includes right of residence. It has been contended that a fraud has been played with the defendant as the son of the plaintiffs was earlier married to one Manu Mehta, who had obtained divorce on the ground of abandonment. The petitioner claims that ad-interim mandatory injunction ought not have been granted to the plaintiff- respondents.
On the other hand, learned counsel for the plaintiff-
respondents Mr. Raman Mahajan, has vehemently contended that the presence of petitioner in the premises in dispute is a continuous threat to the peaceful living of the plaintiffs and that the plaintiffs have in their suit claimed an injunction to restrain the defendant or her relatives from interfering in the peaceful life and liberty of the plaintiffs as well as privacy of the plaintiffs who are senior citizens aged 72 years and 67years, suffering from various ailments. In support of his contention, he has placed on record a complaint filed by the defendant on December 20, 2011 to the Incharge, C.R. No. 6895 of 2011 (O&M)  Police Post, Sector 22, Chandigarh, complaining that the plaintiffs and their elder son Sanjay Mehta had used derogatory remarks and made obscene gesture to out-rage her modesty. He also referred to DDR No. 19 dated January 10, 2012 indicating that the security proceedings under Section 107/150 Cr.P.C. are pending and that the allegations of disconnection of electricity leveled by the defendant were found false. Counsel for the respondents has submitted that the other complaint filed by the defendant was also found to be false. She wanted to involved Sanjay Mehta who had come from Australia to know the welfare of his parents. In an attempt to involve him in a false case, the allegations of out-raging the modesty had been leveled by the defendant. Complaint filed by the defendant on September 26, 2003 seeking action against the plaintiff- respondents has also been placed on record as annexure R-6.
After hearing learned counsel for the defendant- petitioner and learned counsel for the plaintiff- respondents, there is no dispute regarding the fact that the defendant- petitioner’s husband is not residing in India. Her status as daughter-in-law of plaintiff- respondents with a right of residence in the portion of the house owned by them is the point of controversy to be settled in the civil suit but it is apparent that the presence of defendant- petitioner in a portion of the house owned by plaintiff- respondent No. 1 is a cause of repeated nuisance on account of her being on legally higher pedestal as a complainant being a female and daughter-in-law of plaintiff- respondents. It is apparent that she has been indulging in lodging of a C.R. No. 6895 of 2011 (O&M)  complaint over petty matters which are cause of nuisance. No doubt, there are a number of legal provisions available for her protection but the law does not authorize abuse or misuser of the legal provisions. The complaint of outraging her modesty has been found to be false by the police. Prima facie, she does not have a right to stay in the property in dispute and cause a nuisance to the old couple. In order to strike a balance between her legal rights to retain the possession of portion in dispute which is shown as ABCD, a room in House No. 108, Sector 23-A, Chandigarh, and the corresponding right of the plaintiff- respondents to have a peaceful living, in the interest of justice, she can be permitted to retain the possession of the room in question by locking the same with liberty to visit and open the same on Sundays between 10.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m. without causing any sort of interference in the peaceful possession of the remaining portion of the plaintiff- respondents subject to plaintiff- respondents paying a sum of Rs.11000/- as rent of alternative accommodation to be taken by the defendant- petitioner of her own choice. The amount of Rs.11000/- will be payable to the defendant- petitioner w.e.f. the date of order passed by the trial Court. The amount will be tendered before the trial Court on the next date of hearing. The interim mandatory injunction is ordered against the defendant- petitioner to leave the room in dispute ABCD within a period of one month by retaining the key of the room in dispute. This order has been passed taking into consideration all the factors for grant of interim mandatory temporary injunction, taking into consideration the law laid C.R. No. 6895 of 2011 (O&M)  down by the Supreme Court in Palliboyina Bulliyya and others Vs. Dadi Peda Veeraja, 1993 (Suppl.) CCC 654, and Dalpat Kumar and another Vs. Parhlad Singh, 1993 (Suppl.) CCC 507. The comparative possessory title and the peaceful living of both the parties have been taken into consideration and an attempt has been made to strike a balance between the rights of both the parties in the interest of justice. It is further ordered that the trial Court shall make earnest endeavour to conclude the trial within a period of six months after the receipt of a certified copy of this order.
In case of violation of any of the privileges granted to the defendant- petitioner, it will be open to the plaintiff- respondents to seek implementation of the order, in accordance with law.