Landlord resorts to ‘Gandhigiri’ to evict tenant from Greater Noida flat

Published on Jul 30, 2022 02:09 AM IST

Greater Noida: The owners of a flat in a high-rise society in Greater Noida West heaved a sigh of relief on Thursday as they finally entered their own home after a week of living on the staircase outside their apartment

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Greater Noida: The owners of a flat in a high-rise society in Greater Noida West heaved a sigh of relief on Thursday as they finally entered their own home after a week of living on the staircase outside their apartment. Since July 21, flat owners Sunil Kumar (61), and his wife Rakhi Gupta (55), had been living on the stairs in front of their house in protest against their tenant who had refused to vacate the flat despite repeated notices and requests.

Kumar, a retired government servant, had let out his flat in Shree Radha Sky Garden Society in Greater Noida West to Priti Gupta (36), on July 11, 2021. On April 19, 2022, they sent a notice to the tenant informing her that she needs to vacate the flat by June 10.

“My husband retired from his job in March 2022 and we planned to return to live in our own flat in Greater Noida West. As we were living in government quarters in Mumbai, we had to leave that house soon after my husband’s retirement,” said Rakhi.

The couple had bought the flat in 2012 and only got possession of the same in April 2021. They rented it out for a year to the tenant at 8,000 per month.

“Since April we had been in touch with the tenant and had made it clear to her that we will be moving to our flat in July and she needs to vacate it by then. While we did not get a positive response from her, we believed she would understand our situation. However, even after missing the deadline of June 10, she continued to stay at the flat,” Rakhi added.

On July 19, the couple reached the society with a truck full of belongings, ready to move into their own flat. However, the tenant allegedly refused to leave.

“My sister lives in the same society so we kept the loaded truck parked inside the society and stayed at my sister’s home for a few days. However, even after two days, the tenant did not show any signs of leaving. This is when we decided to unload the truck and keep our belongings right outside our flat so that the tenant can understand our situation,” Rakhi said.

Finally on July 22, Kumar and Rakhi laid down a sheet on the stairs outside their flat and sat there in protest. “We spent seven days on the stairs to mark our protest against the tenant’s behaviour. On July 27, I had to be admitted to a hospital as my blood pressure went down severely,” Rakhi added.

The residents of the society also held a candlelight march in support of the owners. “The candlelight march was held to show our support to the flat owner. They bought the flat from their hard-earned money and gave ample time to the tenant to leave but to no avail. The march was held so that she knows other residents are supporting the elderly couple,” said a resident of the society, seeking anonymity.

Finally on Thursday, the tenant Priti, who is a property dealer by profession, agreed to leave the flat. “I am a single mother with a young son who is being forced to leave the house. I have now booked a hotel where I will have to stay and look for a flat,” she said.

Priti added that she was unable to find another flat on rent in the area. “I had asked for more time as it is very difficult for a single woman to find a home in Greater Noida. Still, I was forced to leave” she said.

Meanwhile, Kumar and Rakhi are overjoyed to be finally moving into their own house. “Finally, our nightmare is over and we can sleep in peace at our own home,” said Rakhi.

According to legal experts, a landlord has no right to evict a person from the house forcefully and even the police do not have power to interfere in the matter unless directed by a civil court.

“Eviction procedure of a tenant starts when a landlord serves them a notice. If the tenant does not follow the notice, in that situation, the landlord has to move the civil court. If the court rules in favour of the landlord, it will direct the tenant to leave the flat otherwise local police is directed to execute the order,” said advocate Sunil Misha, a senior lawyer who deals with tenancy laws.

When asked why the couple did not move court, Rakhi said, “We wanted to resolve the matter peacefully. However, if the tenant continued to be adamant, we would have surely resorted to going to the court in a few days”.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Ashni Dhaor is a correspondent with Hindustan Times. She covers crime, education, health, politics, civic issues and environment in Ghaziabad city. She graduated from Delhi University in 2015 and has since been working with Hindustan Times since.

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