2. Definitions. –
In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires-
(a) “Basic rent”, in relation to premises let out before the 2nd day of June, 1944, means the basic rent of such premises as determined in accordance with the provisions of the Second Schedule;
(b) “Controller” means a Controller appointed under sub-section (1) of section 35 and includes an additional Controller appointed under sub-section (2) of that section;
(c) “Fair rate” means the fair rate fixed under section 31 and includes the rate as revised under section 32;
(d) “Hotel or lodging house” means a building or part of a building where lodging with or without board or other services is provided for a monetary consideration;
(e) “Landlord” means a person who, for the time being is receiving, or is entitled to receive, the rent of any premises, whether on his own account or on account of or on behalf of, or for the benefit of, any other person or as a trustee, guardian or receiver for any other person or who would so receive the rent ro be entitled to receive the rent, if the premises were let to a tenant;
(f) “Lawful increase” means an increase in rent permitted under the provisions of this Act;
(g) “Manager of a hotel” includes any person in charge of the management of the hotel;
(h) “Owner of a lodging house” means a person who receives or is entitled to receive whether on this own account or on behalf of himself and others or as an agent or a trustee for any other person, any monetary consideration from any person on account of board, and lodging or other services provided in the lodging house;
(i) “premises” means any building or part of a building which is, or is intended to be, let separately for use as a residence or for commercial use or for any other purpose, and includes.-
(i) the garden, grounds and outhouses, if any, appertaining to such building or part of the building;
(ii) any furniture supplied by the landlord for use in such building or par of the building; but does not include a room in a hotel or lodging house;
(j) “prescribed” means prescribed by rules made under this Act;
(k) “standard rent”, in relation to any premises, means the standard rent referred to in section 6 or where the standard rent has been increased under section 7, such increased rent;
[(l) (Note: Subs. by Act 18 of 1976, sec.2, for clause (1) (w.e.f. 1-12-1975)) “tenant” means any person by whom or on whose account or behalf the rent of any premises is, or, but for a special contract, would be, payable, and includes-
(i) a sub-tenant;
(ii) any person continuing in possession after the termination of his tenancy; and
(iii) in the event of the death of the person continuing in possession after the termination of his tenancy, subject to the order of succession and to this clause, such of the aforesaid person’s-
(b) son or daughter, or, where there are both son and daughter, both of them,
(c ) parents,
(d) daughter-in-law, being the widow of his pre-deceased son, as had been ordinarily living in the premises with such person as a member or members of his family up to the date of his death, but does not include,-
(A) any person against whom an order or decree for eviction has been made, except where such decree or order for eviction is liable to be re-opened under the proviso of section 3 of the Delhi Rent Control (Amendment) Act, 1976 (18 of 1976);
(B) any person to whom a licence, as defined by section 52 of the Indian Easements Act, 1882 (5 of 1882), has been granted.
Explanation1.- The order of succession in the event of the death of the person continuing in possession after the termination of his tenancy shall be as follows:-
(a) firstly, his surviving spouse;
(b) secondly, his son or daughter, or both, if there is no surviving spouse, or if the surviving spouse did not ordinarily live with the deceased person as a member of his family up to the date of his death;
(c ) thirdly, his parents, if there is no surviving spouse, son or daughter or any of them, did not ordinarily live in the premises as a member of the family of the deceased person up to the date of his death; and
(d) fourthly, his daughter-in-law, being the widow of his pre-deceased son, if there is no surviving spouse, son, daughter or parents of the deceased person, or if such surviving spouse, son, daughter or parents, or any of them, did not ordinarily live in the premises as a member of the family of the deceased person up to the date of his death.
Explanation II.- If the person, who acquires, by succession, the right to continue in possession after the termination of the tenancy, was not financially dependent on the deceased person on the date of his death, such successor shall acquire such right for a limited period of one year; and on the expiry of that period, or on his death, whichever is earlier, the right of such successor to continue in possession after the termination of the tenancy shall become extinguished.
Explanation III.-For the removal of doubts, it is hereby declared that, –
(a) where, by reason of Explanation II, the right of any successor to continue in possession after the termination of the tenancy becomes extinguished, such extinguished shall not affect the right of any other succession of the same category to continue in possession after the termination of the tenancy; but if there is no other successor of the same category, the right to continue in possession after the termination of the tenancy shall not, on such extinguishments, pass on to any other successor, specified in any lower category or categories, as the case may be;
(b) the right of every successor, referred to in Explanation I, to continue in possession after the termination of the tenancy, shall be personal to him and shall not, on the death of such successor, develop on any of his heirs];
(m). “urban area” has the same meaning as in the Delhi Municipal Corporation Act, 1957 (66 of 1957).
(i) Heirs of statutory tenant are entitled to same protection against eviction as affordable to tenant under the Delhi Rent Control Act. As there is no provision regulating the rights of heirs to intent the tenancy rights of the tenant in respect of the premises, which are of commercial nature, the tenancy right which is heritable devolves on the heirs under the ordinary law of succession; Keshav Dass v.Prem Nath, AIR 1996 Del 47.
(ii) The provisions in section 2(I) (iii) of the act, which seek to restrict or limit the right of the heirs, in so far as the statutory tenants of residential premises are concerned and to the extent provided therein, are noting any way discriminatory and do not offend the guarantee under Article 14 of the Constitution. The residential tenancy and the commercial tenancy are not similarly placed. They belong to two different categories with distinct features and characteristics of their own. No question of discrimination arises; Gauri Shankar v. Union of India, AIR 1995 SC 55.