Criminal Trident Pack: IPC, CrPC and IEA by Sr. Adv. G.S Shukla and Adv. Raghav Arora
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Gopal   19 August 2017

Urgent : please kindly help

Hi,

I am a senior citizen in my late sixties & need urgent help, so I would like to Thank everyone for taking time to read my post & I am grateful for it. May God Bless You.

I rented an apartment 18 years ago without any written contract. Landlord insisted on cash payment & did not give any rent receipts even though I had asked for it several times. Couple of times he did take the rent by check & I have entry in my bank passbook. I have the procession for straight 18 years in a row & have been physically living in it.

The electricity bill is in his name & he installed phone for me which is in his wife’s name. The town council tax bill is in someone else’s name all these years & as of now too. I got a copy of (7-12) record of all apartments in my complex from Mamlatdar office & his name is not there as an owner of my apt.

I have been paying all of 3 bills plus maintenance myself. Most electricity bills & phone bills I paid by check & maintenance by cash. I have all the originals bills & receipts.

I am an US citizen as well as an OCI holder so I can lawfully & permanently stay in India. I am also a senior citizen in my late sixties. I am unmarried & live alone.

4 years ago my landlord sent 2 thugs at night saying that they have bought the apt & asked me to open the door & harassed me till I opened the door & demanded that I vacate the apt. I called landlord & he said he has sold the apt. I called a friend & asked him to stay with me. Couple of days later again 2 thugs ( one was a new one ) came late at night & asked my friend to open the door & when he refused, one thug broke the glass window by door so my friend woke me up & I had to open the door. He then came to my bedroom & threatened me if I did not vacate the apt in 2 days. Then my landlord & 2 thugs made me sign a paper stating that I will vacate the apt in one month & notarized it.

I could not find an affordable place so 2-3 days before their demanded deadline I hired a lawyer & he filed a suit + a stay ( injunction ) order in a civil court against both the landlord & his wife. I had disagreement in that regard as well as couple of other points in complaint ( He wrote I got only threatening phone calls ) so I asked him to delete or change them & he just made minor change & when I insisted on other changes he got angry & said no to me. It was few minutes before the court closing & weekend was next day & I had deadline from landlord & thugs so under pressure I filed as he wanted. One month after filing I met with lawyer if he had heard anything & he told me he will call me if needed & not to bother him. I did not hear from him till now which is 4 years later. He called me & told me that I have a deposition date in 30 days & wants the original copies of all documents & notarized copies of my passports.

I have no documents of case at all except the copy of suit I filed & a copy of injunction I filed 4 years ago. So I asked him for a copy of defendant’s response & whether we did get an injunction. He said don’t worry & did not give a copy of any correspondence from court or other lawyer & refused to answer any questions. I pleaded so he said collect a copy of defendant’s answer 15 days later which would be too close to deposition date. Me & my sister pleaded again so he said come tomorrow. When we went next day he said he couldn’t find it & asked us to come next day. Next day when we went he gave us a copy of defendant’s response which was not signed & had one page missing and it was just a draft with no court stamp or his lawyers name. When I showed him he said he will have to get a copy from defendant’s lawyer. So now I am very worried & I have lost sleep. I went back yesterday & pleaded again so he asked for Rs.400/- to get certified copy of response & couple of other documents from court which I gave & he said it will take 2 weeks. So by that time my deposition will be due in few days.

From the few pages of defendant’s response that he gave me, here is what defendant is saying.

Due to suit not filed in proper way according to law and misjoinder of parties it should be dismissed. He has made no agreement, did not rent me the apt, did not take any rent, he paid electricity bills, he needs the apt for himself because he is retiring & will have to & rent a place for himself ( According to address in suit he was living in a luxurious place ), wants Rs.1,00,000.00 ( One Lac ) according to C.P.C.-35(A), accuses me of bad intentions to get money & take over the property.

I am scared of my own lawyer because he is not giving me any case related documents and refuses to answer any questions & not knowing what will be my fate, I can’t sleep & have lost my appetite. I am all alone & in my late sixties, have very limited resources & too frail to get into further litigation besides the one I have & running out of time and have no place to go if I get evicted.

I will be very grateful if kind lawyers on this forum will guide me & answer few questions.

Can I ask my lawyer to postpone the deposition which give me some time to get good advice & if yes, what if he refuses or says yes but does not do so ?

Am I lawfully required to give the original copies of documents ( electricity bills, tax bills etc ) to my lawyer before deposition or can I say that I will bring them with me wherever & whenever he needs to show them ? I am afraid of falling them into wrong hands.

Can any changes be made to suit? It clearly does not state that thugs came into my apt. several times & threatened me & made me sign papers to vacate. It just states threatening phone calls and some kind of writing to submit to police. Would that change require me to file a criminal suit separately? Also suit should be against only landlord & not both him & his wife, right ?

How long after deposition the case comes to trial ?

Even with overwhelming evidence, If I lose, how much time do I have to vacate ?

Would my length of tenancy & age would play any part or get any mercy from judge?

If I lose, can I appeal & how long after appeal the next trial would come ?

Is my losing the case means vacating OR does my landlord have to go thru legal process to evict me ?

Not having tax bill in his name & no record in (7-12) in city records, collecting rent in cash, not spending a penny taking care of his own apt. etc. raises doubts as to whether he owns the apt. Could this be brought up in trial or would that mean that I cannot claim to be a tenant if he does not own the apt & thus not a landlord ?

He has done no maintenance of property in 18 years despite my several requests. He had just given me a box with no color job, no closets in kitchen or anywhere else & now lots of repair work is needed. Could this be brought up in deposition or trial ?

I feel my lawyer is not acting in my best interest. Is it wise to change a lawyer at this stage which will take time & being in small town could make it difficult & would not stay secret. Would court postpone deposition to hire another lawyer & if yes I will have to hire someone outside of my town making it a costly proposition. My lawyer has already taken 70% of fees upfront.

I would be very grateful to all lawyers for guiding me in right direction & helping me in any way they can in my old age.

Thank you for taking time to read my post.

Gopal



Learning

 2 Replies

Siddharth Srivastava (Advocate)     19 August 2017

If you are not happy with your present lawyer then you have the option to change. The duty of a lawyer is merely to assist and guide his client so the behaviour of your lawyer is strange. Apply for a certified copy of all the court file papers relating to your case. For rest relating to merits of the case the court papers are required to be examined and be enable to give advise relating to your case.You can ask adjournment on the coming day on any ground. Sidharth 9811776422

pankaj verma   29 August 2017

u can find a free counsel through the legal services authority by moving an application or directly with judge to defend ur case free and he honestly..... 9816374011

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