The Madhya Pradesh High Court, Jabalpur Bench has observed that even if a minuscule part of the cause of action has arisen within the territory of the Court, a petition can be entertained.

A Division Bench comprising Justice Sujoy Paul and Justice Amar Nath asserted, “We find substance in the said argument in the light of Clause-2 of Article 226 of the Constitution which envisages that even if a minuscule part of cause of action has arisen within the territory of this Bench, petition can be entertained. Thus, Office objection is overruled.”

The Bench held that Section 17(1) of the SARFAESI (Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest) Act nowhere talks about the existence of any documentary evidence for that purpose and thus, the application under it cannot be rejected on the basis of lack of documentary evidence.

Advocate Prabhanshu Shukla appeared for the petitioner while none appeared for the respondents.

In this case, the orders passed by Registrar, Debts Recovery Tribunal (DRT), Jabalpur were under challenge which got a stamp of approval in Chamber Appeal by a Presiding Officer. Both the orders were passed by competent officers of DRT, Jabalpur which was within the territorial jurisdiction of the Principle Seat of the Court, thus the office objection was in question.

The Court in the above regard noted, “A conjoint reading of Section 13(4) of Section 17(1) of the SARFAESI Act makes it clear that what is required to be established is that the secured creditor has taken measure under sub-Section(4) of Section 13 in order to invoke the remedy under Section 17 of the said Act. Since no documents were made available to the petitioner, the petitioner categorically pleaded in this regard which was even accepted by learned Presiding Officer that vehicle was repossessed.”

The Court further said that if no document is given to the petitioner, an impossible act to produce the document should not have been expected by the Tribunal.

“… we are unable to countenance the orders passed by the learned Registrar and Presiding Officer of the D.R.T. The petitioner could make out a case deserving registration of his application under Section 17 of the said Act”, said the Court.

The Court directed the DRT to register the application preferred by the petitioner under Section 17 of the Act and proceed therefrom in accordance with the law.

Accordingly, the Court allowed the plea and set aside the orders.

Cause Title- M/s Agrawal Coals and Logistics v. Debts Recovery Tribunal & Ors.

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