Padmanaba v. Jayasekera
1969Present: Sirimane, J.
K.PADMANABA, Appellant, and M. IC. JAYASEKERA,
S. C. 3SJ6S—C, R. Colombo, 91354
Lease of a grass field—Subsequent erection of houses on the land by the lessee—Renewalof lease thereafter in December J0G2—Whether the lessee -is entitled toprotection under the Rent Restriction Act—Meaning of word “ premises ”—Rent Restriction (Amendment} Act ATo. 10 of 1961, s. 13.
Tho dofondant obtainod from tho plaintiff in 1952 tho leaso of a grass fiold,1 rood and 35-SI porchos in oxtont and situatod within tho U. C. limits ofMoratuwa. By 19G1 tho dofondant had constructed four houses on tho land,which thon.coasod to bo a grass fiold. Tho housos woro tonantod by about 15• parsons.-' -Whon tho loaso was ronewod on 23rd Docoir.bor 1902 fora period of3 yoars, it mado no special roforonco to tho buildings and roforrod only to“ tho promisos fully doscribod in tho Schodulo Tho Schedulo sot out thoentire allotmont of land of 1 rood 3S-S1 porchos.
Held, that, according to tho definition of tho term “ promisos ” in section 13of tho Rent Restriction (Amondmont) Act No. 10 of 1961, tho dofondant wasontitlod to protection under tho Rout Restriction Act in respect of tho leasedpromisos, after the period of tho loaso of 23rd Docombor 19G2 had oxpirod.
■ Tho Ront-Rostriction Act applied to each ono of tho buildings constructed ontho land.
Appeal from a judgment of the Court of Requests, Colombo.
IK. D. Gunasekera, with Raja Bandaranayake, for tho defendant-appellant.
J. Fernando, with Gamini Dissanayake, for the plaintiff-respondent.
Cur. adv. vult.
SIRIMAKE, J.— Padmanaba v. Jayasckcra
March 14, 1909. Sikimaxe, J.—-
On lease P2 of 1952, the plaintiff had leased to the defendant anallotment of land, 1 rood 3S*SI perches in extent situated within the
U.C. limits of Moratuwa. The learned Commissioner has taken the viewthat it was a piece of bare land or a grass field with a hut at that time, andone may assume that this view is correct.
Thereafter the defendant had constructed certain buildings on the land.These buildings consisted of four houses, each containing a verandah, aroom and a kitchen. They were constructed about 10 feet apart, andare tenanted by about 15 persons. It was conceded at the argument■that the defendant’s evidence correctly sets out the factual position inregard to the buildings, as the plaintiff apparently knew very littleabout this land. According to the defendant he had come on this landunder the plaintiff’s husband even long before P2. By 1961 thesebuildings were on the land, and it was not used as a grass field thereafter.The evidence of the Assessment Clerk of the Monttuwa Urban Councilshows that the five buildings were separately assessed. They had beenso assessed for the first time in 195S.
On 23rd December 1962, the plaintiff once again on PI leased to thedefendant for a j^eriod of 3 3rears “ the premises fully described in theSchedule together with all and singular the rights, privileges, servitudes
and appurtenances whatsoever to the said premises”, The
Schedule sets out the entire allotment of land of 1 rood 38-SI perches.
This action was brought by the plaintiff to eject the defendant fromthe leased premises, as the period of the lease had expired. She averredin the plaint that the subject matter of this action was not governed byf he Rent Restriction Act.
The main question for decision was whether these were premises towhich the Rent Restriction Act applied.
Section 13 of the Rent Restriction (Amendment) Act No. 10 of 1961enacts that “ Premises mean any building or a part of a buildingtogether with the land appertaining thereto ”. There can be little-doubt, in my view, that the Act applies to each one of the buildingsconstructed on the land.
Before the definition of “premises ” in the amending Act, Gunasekara J.,in a case where the facts were somewhat similar—Paul v. GeverappaReddiar 1—said (at page 404) that the question was whether the propertyleased consisted of a building with appurtenant land or a land withajipurtenant building.
Sinnetamby J. in Nallaihamby v. Leitan 2 expressed the view at page 61that the only rational test was to ascertain whether it was a housethat was let with a garden as an adjunct or whether it was a garderthat was let with a house as an adjunct.
1 (105S) SO N. L. R. 402.
* (1956) 53 N. L. R. 56.
Gooneralne v. Wimalawathie
Even by these tests it would appear that at the time of the lease PI.the premises consisted of buildings in the occupation of tenants with theland appertaining thereto. .
In this view of the matter it is unnecessary to express an opinion onthe further point raised by Mr. Gunasckera for the appellant, viz., that-after the definition in the amending act, the provisions of the RentRestriction Act applied to every building or a part thereof situated in anarea where the Act is in operation, and that the tests in the cases referredto above arc no longer applicable. He contended that Fernando v.Vadivelu 1 was wrongly decided.
The learned Commissioner held in favour of the plaintiff on the groundthat the lease PI made no special reference to buildings and that thedefendant could not claim that the buildings were also included in thaflease.
It is elementary that when an allotment of land which is leased isdescribed by metes and bounds, everything standing within thoseboundaries (unless expressly excluded) are also leased to the lessee.
In my view the defendant is entitled to protection under the RentRestriction Act.
The appeal is allowed, and the plaintiff’s action is dismissed with cost?both here and below.
K. PADMANABA, Appellant, and M.K. JAYASEKERA, Respondent