Delhi High Court Dismisses Lawyer's Plea Against Subscription Fee For Sports Complex Closed Due To Covid
Justice Subramonium Prasad of Delhi High Court has dismissed a writ petition filed by an Advocate challenging the termination of his membership at the DDA Sports Complex, Delhi for non-payment of the membership fee, citing that the authorities had not wrongfully terminated the said membership.
Facts of the Case
The petitioner was a member of DDA Sports Complex, regularly paying the subscription fee. Due to COVID-19 outbreak, in light of the directions by the Government, the Sports Complex was closed. The petitioner could not avail the facilities of the Sports Complex during April – March 2022 as he had contracted COVID. Post recovery, the Petitioner visited the Sports Complex only to find out that his membership was cancelled due to non-payment of subscription fee.
The Petitioner issued a legal notice to the DDA and filed the writ petition before the Delhi High Court.
It was the contention of the Petitioner that his membership was cancelled without following due procedure established by law, as he could not pay subscription fee due to the Sports Complex being shut down due to COVID – 19 outbreak and since he was not informed of the arrears, prior cancellation of the subscription.
The Petitioner appeared in person. Ashim Vacher, Standing Counsel for the DDA submitted that an email was sent, informing the petitioner and other concerned authorities at the DDA of the arrears in subscription fee and a letter was also sent to the Petitioner informing him regarding the dues, and that non-payment would lead to cancellation of membership.
Further, the DDA had not announced a waiver of subscription fee upon closure of the Sports Complex due to COVID–19 outbreak.
The Court referred to the Judgment of the Supreme Court in the matter of Dr. Rai Shivendra Bahadur vs. Governing Body of Nalanda College, Bihar Sharif and Others, AIR 1962 SC 1210 it was held that a writ lies only where there is right, and without a right, a writ petition is not maintainable.
The Court noted that there was no announcement from the Sports Complex for waiver of subscription fees owing to the closure of the facilities in light of the directions issued by the Government from time to time.
In view of the above, and given that the petitioner had not brought on record any substantial material suggesting that the cancellation of his membership was in violation of the rules/bye-laws of the Sports Complex, the petition was dismissed.