Delhi High Court: A Division Bench comprising of Sanjiv Khanna and Chander Shekhar, JJ. allowed a writ petition filed challenging the order of the Debt Recovery Appellate Tribunal, and remanded the matter back to be heard on merits.

The petitioner filed an application under Section 17(1) of Securitization and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest  Act, 2002 questioning the initiation of action by the respondent bank under Section 13(4). The petitioner had bought the land concerned, the original owner of which was one Vipin Chopra. Subsequently, the petitioner executed a registered sale deed of the said land, in the name of her husband. The respondent bank claimed that the said Vipin Chopra had mortgaged the land with State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur, and the right over the same was transferred to the respondent bank. The Debt Recovery Tribunal held that the respondent bank had a right over the land and not the petitioner. The petitioner preferred an appeal before the Debt Recovery Appellate Tribunal which rejected the appeal in limine holding that the petitioner had no locus to proceed with the matter as she was no more the owner of the land in question and her husband who was a necessary party was not impleaded. Aggrieved thus, the petitioner filed the present petition.

The High Court observed that the petitioner was not properly guided and informed that her husband should have been impleaded as a party. Moreover, the petitioner being a power of attorney holder, who had executed the sale deed, had interest in contending the proceedings. She was also residing in the property. The Court felt that the petitioner and her husband should not be denied a hearing on merits on account of technical lapse and failure to understand the impact and legal effect of executing the sale deed. The petitioner was misguided and did not have benefit of proper legal advice. Accordingly, the order impugned was set aside and the matter was remanded back to the Appellate Tribunal for hearing in merits. [Devender Kaur v. Punjab and Sind Bank,2018 SCC OnLine Del 10441, dated 02-08-2018]

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