Kerala High Court: Devan Ramachandran, J. entertained the instant writ petition filed in lieu of the judgment which the petitioner did not comply with, hence, the bank had took the physical possession of the residential property.
The case of the petitioner was that the respondent-bank took the possession of the petitioner’s house as the loan was not repaid in time thus, the petitioner pleaded that due to such act of the petitioner he and his family including two young children had no place to live. He, therefore, pleaded that the respondent – Bank to be directed to regularize the loan account, by allowing him to pay off the over dues in a few installments and that they be further directed to hand over physical possession of the house to him.
On the contrary, the counsel for the respondent K.V Anil submitted that no latitude can normally be shown to the petitioner because, he had willfully disobeyed the directions of the Court. But it was further contended that if the petitioner was ready to pay the overdue immediately, an indulgence, could be shown to him. It was submitted that if the petitioner was ready to pay 50% of the total amount due, the physical possession can be given back of the secured asset. He added that the balance can be allowed to be paid in not more than 10 equal monthly installments, along with the regular EMIs.
Liza P.Cheryan, counsel for the petitioner submitted that the petitioner was not in a position to pay such a large amount in the desired period, but a reasonable amount was ready to be deposited. It was pleaded that on such payment, the possession of the residential house be ordered to be given back to the petitioner. It was assured that the balance overdue, along with all applicable charges and interest, will be paid in 10 equal monthly installments without any default thereafter, and that the account will be serviced satisfactorily in future.
The Court observed that it was aware of the jurisdictional inhibitions but still was necessary to show a limited lenitude to the petitioner because of the family which was also suffering along with him. Hence, the Court ordered the respondent to give back the possession to the petitioner but under the strict condition that he must not default any installment in the future. The petitioner was directed to pay Rs 25,000 and the Bank was directed to hand over the keys of the residential property to him. Further, he was also directed to pay the regular EMIs.
The Court held, “Since I have permitted the petitioner to obtain back possession of the residential property strictly under these orders, it goes without saying that any default of the afore directions, will render him susceptible to an action under the Contempt of Court Act and also that in such event, he will be obligated to give back physical possession of the same to the Bank without any further orders from this Court.”[Chandran S. v. Canara Bank, 2019 SCC OnLine Ker 2392, decided on 24-07-2019]