Topic: Section 108. Rights and liabilities of lessor and lessee

In the absence of a contract or local usage to the contrary, the lessor and the lessee of immoveable property, as against one another, respectively, possess the rights and are subject to the liabilities mentioned in the rules next following, or such of them as are applicable to the property leased:—

(A) Rights and Liabilities of the Lessor

(a) The lessor is bound to disclose to the lessee any material defect in the property, with reference to its intended use, of which the former is and the latter is not aware, and which the latter could not with ordinary care discover;

(b) the lessor is bound on the lessee’s request to put him in possession of the property;

(c) the lessor shall be deemed to contract with the lessee that, if the latter pays the rent reserved by the lease and performs the contracts binding on the lessee, he may hold the property during the time limited by the lease without interruption.

The benefit of such contract shall be annexed to and go with the lessee’s interest as such, and may be enforced by every person in whom that interest is for the whole or any part thereof from time to time vested.
(B) Rights and Liabilities of the Lessee

(d) If during the continuance of the lease any accession is made to the property, such accession (subject to the law relating to alluvion for the time being in force) shall be deemed to be comprised in the lease;

(e) if by fire, tempest or flood, or violence of an army or of a mob, or other irresistible force, any material part of the property be wholly destroyed or rendered substantially and permanently unfit for the purposes for which it was let, the lease shall, at the option of the lessee, be void:

Provided that, if the injury be occasioned by the wrongful act or default of the lessee, he shall not be entitled to avail himself of the benefit of this provision;

(f) if the lessor neglects to make, within a reasonable time after notice, any repairs which he is bound to make to the property, the lessee may make the same himself, and deduct the expense of such repairs with interest from the rent, or otherwise recover it from the lessor;

(g) if the lessor neglects to make any payment which he is bound to make, and which, if not made by him, is recoverable from the lessee or against the property, the lessee may make such payment himself, and deduct it with interest from the rent, or otherwise recover it from the lessor;

(h) the lessee may 1[even after the determination of the lease] remove, at any time 2[whilst he is in possession of the property leased but not afterwards] all things which he has attached to the earth; provided he leaves the property in the state in which he received it;

(i) when a lease of uncertain duration determines by any means except the fault of the lessee, he or his legal representative is entitled to all the crops planted or sown by the lessee and growing upon the property when the lease determines, and to free ingress and egress to gather and carry them;

(j) the lessee may transfer absolutely or by way of mortgage or sub-lease the whole or any part of his interest in the property, and any transferee of such interest or part may again transfer it. The lessee shall not, by reason only of such transfer, cease to be subject to any of the liabilities attaching to the lease;

Nothing in this clause shall be deemed to authorise a tenant having an untransferable right of occupancy, the farmer of an estate in respect of which default has been made in paying revenue, or the lessee of an estate under the management of a Court of Wards, to assign his interest as such tenant, farmer or lessee;

(k) the lessee is bound to disclose to the lessor any fact as to the nature or extent of the interest which the lessee is about to take, of which the lessee is, and the lessor is not, aware, and which materially increases the value of such interest;

(l) the lessee is bound to pay or tender, at the proper time and place, the premium or rent to the lessor or his agent in this behalf;

(m) the lessee is bound to keep, and on the termination of the lease to restore, the property in as good condition as it was in at the time when he was put in possession, subject only to the changes caused by reasonable wear and tear or irresistible force, and to allow the lessor and his agents, at all reasonable times during the term, to enter upon the property and inspect the condition thereof and give or leave notice of any defect in such condition; and, when such defect has been caused by any act or default on the part of the lessee, his servants or agents, he is bound to make it good within three months after such notice has been given or left;

(n) if the lessee becomes aware of any proceeding to recover the property or any part thereof, or of any encroachment made upon, or any interference with, the lessor’s rights concerning such property, he is bound to give, with reasonable diligence, notice thereof to the lessor;

(o) the lessee may use the property and its products (if any) as a person of ordinary prudence would use them if they were his own; but he must not use, or permit another to use, the property for a purpose other than that for which it was leased, or fell 3[or sell] timber, pull down or damage buildings 3[belonging to the lessor, or] work mines or quarries not open when the lease was granted, or commit any other act which is destructive or permanently injurious thereto;

(p) he must not, without the lessor’s consent, erect on the property any permanent structure, except for agricultural purposes;

(q) on the determination of the lease, the lessee is bound to put the lessor into possession of the property.

COMMENTS
(i) Under clause (o) the lessee must not use or permit another to use the property for a purpose other than that for which it was leased. The premises were let out to the tenant for sugarcane juice business but was using the premises for selling readymade clothes thereby contravening the provisions of the Act; Dashrath Baburao Sangale v. Kashinath Bhaskar Datta, AIR 1993 SC 2646.

(ii) The respondent is liable to be evicted on the ground of wilful denial of title and wilful default in the payment of rent; Kanuthi Madalichamy v. Thangarathina Nadar, AIR 1991 Mad 229.

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1. Ins. by Act 20 of 1929, sec. 56.

2. Subs. by Act 20 of 1929, sec. 56, for “during the continuance of the lease”.

3. Ins. by Act 20 of 1929, sec. 56.