Renewals of Expired Leave & Licence Agreements ?


SHOULD ONE SIGN THE “RENEWALS” OF EXPIRED LEAVE & LICENCE AGREEMENTS AS DEMANDED BY THE BPP?

The trustees of the Bombay Parsi Panchayat (BPP) are trying to browbeat the residents of Parsi Baugs under their control to “renew” leave and licence agreement which have expired years ago. Should the residents accede to the request and sign the agreement? No. Here’s why.

Before I come to the legal aspect, I would be worth recalling that some of the Trustees had stated in their election manifesto that they would convert the licencees to tenancies. They have forgotten their assurance on being elected to power. They only hold that the trustees have over the community is by virtue of their control over the vast housing properties of the BPP. Most of our unworthy BPP Trustee “Sahebs” have poured in good money on election campaigns, holding entertainment programmes and dinners, organizing transport, etc. etc., considering it a capital investment to reap the profits after becoming trustees – such profits being available only from the housing sector. Would any person who had honest intentions to serve the community pour in such money on elections campaign……?

Most of the present Trustees have not done anything for the community, except put it in poor light by their rowdy behaviour and fighting in public. They forget that they are there in a fiduciary capacity to serve the community by fulfilling the wishes of the founder trustees as embodied in the Trust Deed. They consider themselves trustee “sahebs” and demi gods and abuse their position by trying to brow beat the community and milk the trust. The trust deeds do not have any concept of giving accommodation on leave and licence basis; the objective is to provide accommodation to Parsis who cannot afford to buy their own accommodation. The pugree system and the huge deposits running into more than Rs.50 lakhs to crores goes against the very objective of the trust. Although the Parsi poplulation is dwindling, the housing shortage is becoming more acute, which makes it evident that something is wrong somewhere.

Now, adverting to the legal and moral aspects of “renewal” of expired leave and licence agreements. Firstly, a dead licence cannot be renewed; it would be a fresh licence on new terms and conditions. It would be unilateral and heavily loaded in favour of the BPP, jeopardizing the interests of the residents of the various baugs.

What is the present status of the resident who were originally given accommodation under leave and licence agreement? The licence period stated in the agreement has expired, but the allottee continues to reside in the flat and pay licence fees which are accepted by the BPP. Since the licensor continues to let the licencee occupy the premises after the expiry of the licence period and also accept the licence fee, what would it imply? It would mean that the intent of the licensor was to create the tenancy but by-pass the rent control legislation. The acceptance of the licence fees after the expiry of the licence period would act as an estoppel against the licensor, and hence the licensor would not be entitled to claim that the premises were given on leave and licence after the expiry of the licence period.

Supreme Court ruling on tenancy camouflaged under a Leave & Licence Agreement: It is to be noted that there is a Supreme Court judgement on the issue of camouflaging a tenancy under a Leave & Licence Agreement. (A copy of the judgement is attached hereto). In this judgement, the Supreme Court has come down heavily on licensors / landlords who attempt to scuttle the provisions of the Rent Control Legislation by camouflaging tenancies as licences. This judgement lays down that regardless of the nomenclature used, the court would see the true and real intent of the document to determine whether it is a genuine licence agreement or a camouflaged tenancy. If it is found that the Leave & Licence agreement has been executed merely to by-pass the Rent Control Act, the Court would consider it a tenancy disregarding the terminology used in the agreement.
[Judgement dated 22.03.2004 in Civil Appeal No.1548 of 1999 delivered by the Bench of Hon’ble Mr. Justice R.C. Lahoti and Hon’ble Dr. Justice AR. Lakshmanan  in the case of C.M. Beena & Anr.  (Appellants) versus P.N. Ramachandra Rao (Respondent) – 
AIR 2004 SC 2103 = 2004 (3) ALD 108 SC = 2004 (3) SCC 595 = 2004 SCCL.COM 29]

Since the Trustees know that they are doing something that is not justified, they adopt the unethical modus operandi of “summoning” the resident to the BPP office without giving an inkling as to why he / she is being called; then take the person wait for hours together to exhaust him physically and mentally; and thereafter call in him into the committee room where he is surrounded and over-awed by the presence of all the trustees and other officials, who frighten and browbeat him to do what he is ordered to do. HENCE, ANYBODY BEING “SUMMONED” MUST SIMPLY NOT ATTEND THE BPP OFFICE.

– Jehangir Gai
  Wadia Building,
  598-A, Girgaon Road,
  Mumbai – 400002.

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29 thoughts on “Renewals of Expired Leave & Licence Agreements ?

  1. Jimmy says:

    Fantastic Jehangir, it is high time someone stands up to the diktats of the BPP. I happen to read your articles in the TOI regularly. Please carry on the noble work you are doing.

    God Bless You.

  2. Piloo Mani says:

    Excellent piece of information for all licensees. Similar, practice is being carried out by Parsi Central Association, Parsi Colony, Dadar, Mumbai 400 014 which is forcing old licencees (more than 20 year old licencees) to sign fresh Monthly Licensee Agreements wherein the rights of the original licensee are denied and the Agreements are totally biased in favour of the Association. No nomination is allowed. By this the powers to be of the PCA are minting money. They are using charity funds to blackmail the licensees and file unnecessary legal cases.

    • Jehangir Gai says:

      There is no provision in law for nomination in respect of premises given on leave and licence. The old licencees must simply refuse to sign fresh leave and licence agreements.

  3. Jehangir Gai says:

    The affect persons must resist the pressure tactics. If push comes to shove, they must file RAD (Rent Act Declaratory) case in the Small Causes Court to declare them to be tenants. It is sad that even though we are such a small miniscule community, and dwindling day by day, the Trustees of our Trusts are not supportive, but go to the extent of harassing the community members by abusing their power and the positions they hold.

  4. rustom says:

    Its a doble edged sword…..the powers of tenancy , the renter changes the demography and the reason for building the colonies. The will and reason of the donors is also negated by the power a renter has.

    Im not going to get into a debate on why a parsi colony should be maintained as one..just like muslim, jain, bohri and catholic colonies are maintained as such….and change in demography is highly objected and restricted in all such other

    The demography of a parsi colony is being changed when the family renting the flat forgets that the grandfather, great grand father or father or this generation itself got the flat as they were parsis. Many instances are found when the trustees, landlords etc, cannot enforce the will of the donors when non parsis come in due to intermariage. On a occasion it was found out that the parsi member died and the family practising the faith of the foreign ( diff faith) took shelter in the rent act/control. Thus in a parsi baug, given for parsis, the demograpgy began to drift.
    Many a times the flats are kept in maiden surnames, but the family residing there is not a parsi,apart from the parsi spouce…..and shelter taken misusing the rent control, the parsi spouce’s maiden name and zarathushtra’s photograph on a wall.
    Members of other faith also BUY property in their respective colonies, and demography and culture, ritualistic following of that baug is maintained and restricted to the faith of the colony. Any attempt to change it even a bit or start changing it is not only repelled, restricted but also challenged, legally and by other means.
    No other community celebrate zoroastrian functions, preach zoroastrianism, nor make it a zoroastrian environment, apart from a zoroastrian colony. With demographics of the zoroastrians being very little, from tv channels to the impact of social gathering and society at large, many zoroastrians especially the young get a lot of propaganda for other faiths, babas, gurus etc etc, and the other faiths make it a point that thru their own baugs their own are inculcated in their faith’s environment…whilst Parsi colonies are being also turned towards other faiths due tio a demographical change allowed to creep in, dismissing the will of the donors, dismissing the future generation’s right to a parsi colony instead it being turned cosmopolitan due to taking advantage of the rent act..

    A severe thought should be given before passing judgement for the future of colonies being maintained as a Parsi colony..after all everyone wants to come into a Parsi colony but not take the extra step of maintaining it as one.

  5. Rustom says:

    Persons who want to pay less than what an aayah pays for a slum but want to stay in palatial houses like khushro baug also can take refuge in RAD..people who want to pay outgoings as low as their servants pay for a 100sq slum….but want the trustees to maintain the building as good as the taj itself , also can take refuge in RAD..
    Such articles that aggravate the trustee- renter relationship are not only detrimental to zoroastrian society but any society as it creates a divide and aggravates it more instead of bridging the gap. It is for scoring a political brownie whilst blaming the others for doing nothing..
    If the author was sincere in agenda, then perhaps the divide would have been narrowed by putting across, points from both ends, the worries of the renter and the trustee/owner.
    A recent case of a slab collapsing..everyone blamed the trustee…bit what were the renters paying or contributing for the upkeep….same if not LESS than what one pays for a slum in Bombay.

    Zoroastrians , especially due to their demographics rose like phoenix due to network, communication within the community….which was made do with by the generation that took all for free and gave back chaos and divisions. The same generation wants free medical treatement for Parsi General but will not add in the coffers as if the mones donated by the ancestors will last for ever, the same generation writes about articles in which demographics of a parsi colony can be done away with…..
    The truth is that some of the renters are as bad as some of the trustees and some of the trustees as good as their trust deeds and the renters.

    Instead of giving a boost to those who stay in rented houses meant for a purpose but go against the donors wishes or the basic reason for a colony, and cheat by keeping maiden surnames whilst raising a family whose colonies would not accept a zoroastrian in theirs, we should analyse how to get a trustee/owner- renter partnership strenghtened. Instea dof furthering the divide, the community should find ways and give more importance to articles that bridge gaps.

    • Jehangir Gai says:

      Rustom is trying to deviate from the main subject – viz. the trustees acting contrary to the trust deed and the law of the land as laid down by the highest court in the country.

      • rustom says:

        No Im not deviating from the Topic. If the topic is as stated by Mr Gai that ‘ trustees acting contrary to the trust deed and the law of the land’. In fact the topic is deviated by himself when the rent act is proposed and promoted to be taken advantage of by those and even when the will of the donor and reason for making of Parsi colonies is negated.The main reason being sustenance and promotion of zoroastrian culture within zoroastrians especially the younger generation and help to the needy zoroastrians.
        Of course those generations that park a BMW outside their houses can also take shelter under the garb of trust deed of renting and not leasing just as well as those who change the demography of a Parsi colony as under the RAD it becomes virtually impossible for the trustees to enforce the will of the donor..especially when thru cheating the flat is kept under the name of a Parsi but a tukaram, Mehta/ Shah/ Ismaili / D’costa families and their culture is promoted within.

        I once again state that there are good trustees just as there are good tenants and bad trustee as well as bad tenants. To paint any one as bad as done by the note above is far from truth and doesn’t solve the problem because it offers no answers but enhances problems by promoting excuses that enables those who are going contrary to the philosophy of making the baugs and contrary to aiding zoroastrians and zoroastrian society.

        If the problem has to be addressed then, the problem in totality has to be taken. One can write about the problems of the owners/trustees of the building or any building. where in rent act doesnt make it possible to increase or substantiate the rent with the actual maintainence cost leave alone improvement cost…that again will not help the needy zoroastrian.

    • Jimmy Kapadia says:

      Mr Rustom,

      Please let me bring to your notice that each block of Cusrow Baug has its own management committee who manage a sinking fund from which maintenance of the buildings is carried out. In case the cost is too high the Trustees pay half the amount of the work cost. The relations between the tenants and the trustees are good and matters are sorted out amicably. This sinking fund amount is over and above the rent and maintenance charges the tenants pay the trustees.

  6. rustom says:

    Mr Kapadia. You only strengthen what I say. That not all trustees are bad and just because they give out flats on leave n license , the system is not detrimental to sustaining but aids in sustaining what the donors had in mind and their will.

    Howe can one paint an entire segment with the same brush…if so then one can paint all tenants as bad and non coperative. Such promotions go against solving but only instigates further..for whatever motive. If ‘A’ renter is not paying his dues, the entire renters segment cannot be blamed and renting cannot be abolished nor abhored, same way just because A’ trustee is bad the entire population should not be instigated against trustees/owners and the leave n lease licensee system should not be termed bad.

    If one wants to close eyes to the fact that rent act has its own demerits and not only zoroastrian societies but many other have suffered due to it when the tenants do not want to cooperate , one can do so as the cat drinking milk, but it wont change facts.
    I had given an example of khusrow baug ..just as an example , though problems therein of a demogrpahical change is also known as well as other problems including parking space and fees for the same challenged. Yet i do not want to digress this into whats happening or not happening in any 1 particular baug and will not do so.

    One of the many reasons Parsis sold their properties was that it became virtually impossible to upkeep a property they have rented out, impossible to evict someone or increase the rent vis a vis inflation and maintenance cost, let alone make a profit. Many non parsis bought over properties and old structures were brought down and new ones came and there is also an example of then Parsis not being allowed a flat therein including the earlier residents as the building wants to maintain a “Jain’ culture!!!

    There are many instances wherein the trustee cannot enforce the will of the donor as the resident takes shelter in the rent control act.
    There are instances where a young family practicing Zoroastrianism has to buy flats outside whilst a non zoroastrian family is brought up in a parsi colony taking shelter in the rent act.

    Instances such as
    1) A parsi having signed a conversion form upon marrying, but keeping the flat in the maiden name or parent’s name, bringing up the children according to the foreign spouses culture.
    2) In cases of Parsis marrying catholics, an undertaking is taken in a church wedding ( which is generally showcased as just a formality) that if the parsi does not wish to convert the children will be brought up the catholic way. Thus again demography is slowly shifting, taking advantage of parsi donations, yet again practising something else.

    Also due to general void of zoroastrian religious education apart from ‘ “We came to india from Iran; and the religious knowledge of the foreign spouce mainly, a fused culture is practised with a bias towards the culture that is often taught, like saying grace before meals, sunday mass etc.

    3) Islamic traditions make it necessary to convert the foreign spouce. An example was that the Parsi husband died, the flat then goes to the practising muslim who has a right to bring up her kids in her own way, has a right to invite and give away the flat to whomever she desires irrespective of faith or donors wishes…a lengthy legal battle will mainly go in favor of the renter.

    4) Another example of a man having slept with his servant and left the flat to her, this happened in a parsi colony in central bombay. The rest of the society garnered funds and gave a huge sum to not let the demography change as the family of the lady moved in could not be evicted according to rent act and passing over the legal rights,and ofcourse they respect their faith more just like anyone else except the parsis.

    5) In dadar Parsi colonby itself there are bakts of a baba, whose meditation classes were so loud than one could not pray in the agiary but could hear the satsangs in the adjoining building. Again a rent act will not empower the owner to tell the family that he has the right to give the flat to a poor parsi or a zoroastrian practicing couple….due to the rent act

    6) Again a babi with a snake symbol was very active and promotion of the cult was promoted from a parsi colony, but the owner/trustee could not evict the same.

    7) Recent instance of slab collapsing in a parsi colony as the residents were paying less than what one plays to maintain a slum.

    There are instances where in a parsi has passed on her flat to a niece whose children are not parsis, and the rent act comes into play

    In all these instances a family especially a young family practising the faith of our ancestors are denied a flat when someone who goes against the wishes of the donors takes refuge in the rent act, changes the demography, enhances a foreign culture and even promotes it in parsi colonies.
    If the trustee wants to enforce the donors will, he has tp have some sort of power

    The above does not mean that a poor parsi family is subjected to high lease….but it also means that a parsi family of moderate means cannot and should not take shelter in the rent act and pay rent which would not constitute replacing a tap leave alone maintain the water lines and challenge in its increase taking shelter in the rent act nor change the demography just because his love for his/her spouse is more than the respect and responsibility of maintaining a colony as a parsi colony.

    One can instigate the parsi population that it is their right to free treatment in parsi general hospital and trustees are bad whereas the truth is that Parsi general hospital is the ONLY hospital that is doing charity ( read recent report in news papers) and many parsis like tenants want to take advantage of it whilst donating nothing for future generations.

    To solve the problem of a trustee applying the lease act wrongly on a poor parsi, is wrong and should be challenged, just as a leasse who changes the demography or not paying maintenance viz a viz flat owned and inflation should be evicted, but for that power shoudl also rest in the trustees hand.

    In the rent act the power balance TOTALLY SHITFS into the renter, making it impossible to enforce the will of the donors

    The trustee/renters should bridge the gap and any instigation in the community enhancing gaps should be thwarted, otherwise there wil be no hope for future generation Parsis….but then the generation that got all for free, has left behind chaos, gaps and segmentations on all fronts

    • Jimmy Kapadia says:

      Mr Rustom,

      In the times we live in its the money that matters. What can you expect a landlord to do if he cannot find a Parsi who wants to occupy a vacant premise for whatever reason ? When good offers come his way from non-Parsis it is too tempting for him to refuse. One cannot compare an individual Parsee landlord to the baugs as these colonies are specifically meant for Parsees only and the BPP is entrusted, unfortunately, by the original trustees to manage allotment of flats.

      The question now is that when the great philanthropic souls who built the baugs with the intention that poor Parsees could get an affordable dwelling at very affordable rent, why should the trustees today sell the same at over a crore and that too on a leave & license basis ? This is just the question Jehangir Gai is asking, I suppose.

      Whenever asked the above question to a BPP trustee and you get a standard reply that the money they earn from the rich who buy flats in Cusrow Baug goes into building other properties in North Mumbai for the poor. Now that’s a big joke.

      A poor widow with modest savings approached a trustee for a flat in Thana. She was told that the price was 19 lakhs and the rent was Rs. 5,000 per month. Affordable rent, Mr. Rustom, for a widow who sustains herself only on her late husband’s meager investments ?

      Try asking them for accounts, and you will be thrown out of their office. Ask Mr. Noshir Dadrawala.

      • Jehangir Gai says:

        Jimmy Kapadia is absolutely right. I entirely agree with him. Today, a car may be purchased for a few lakhs, but a house is not affordable. Saying that a Parsi owning a car should not reside in a Parsi Baug is meaningless. I repeat, the present Trustees have not done anything for the community; what has been done is by philanthropic and benevolent Parsees of yore, and instead of honouring their wishes, these Trustees are abusing their position by not fulfilling the mandate of those who founded the trusts and properties. The readers are intelligent enough to understand the ground realities.

  7. rustom says:

    Dear Mr Jimmy
    On your
    1)”What can you expect a landlord to do if he cannot find a Parsi who wants to occupy a vacant premise for whatever reason”
    Are you serious…..what makes you think that young parsis do not want to or are not there to come in to our baugs> What makes you think so..and if this was true then why are there so many queues.

    If you are stating that when Parsi building go in cosmopolitan hands and then in becomes out of parsi control and very expensive then we go back to what i am stating that due to the rent act control it becomes impossible for the trustee/ owner to maintain a building when the outgoings are still maintained that of the 1960s….also the same problem applkies when the trustee/owner wants to enforce the will of the donor..and when he becomes powerless and the property unmaintainable due to the maintaincence not being condusive to the cost of maintaining, he is forced to sell the property and then business men from other communities/builders who balance off profits and money spent thru other projects buy the property, parsis are forced to vacate and then problems like the new society maintaining a jain culture or a swimming pool and new taxes applicable make it impossible for a young family to afford such high outgoings.
    Well then again my point of not instigating one section of zoroastrians against the other holds true especially when its done to score political brownie points. Also instead of painting an entire segment as bad, each case should be analysed and giving the property on leave n license which empowers the trustees to enforce the will of the donors should be propogated as it aids in maintaining a colony as a parsi colony..unless of course this and ‘zoroastrianism’ is not ure agenda!

    on ure
    2) “When good offers come his way from non-Parsis it is too tempting for him to refuse”

    Well why make it a situation where in one feels the desperation to sell the property> Now again this is mainly done when the tenants do not coperate or there is a tenant /trustee problem. The article by mr gai only instigates such problems , making trustee/owner sell the property to a non parsi making it even worse in the later stages for the parsi tenants..and they would have all lived peacefully if instead of instigations, bridging the gap solutions are provided.Or is it that ure generation had forgotten to brdge gaps, and listen to each other’s problem and work things out…..in any case why instigate a whole section against the other…..with tenancy rights, the demography of the colony can be changed….building maintainence has a huge potential to slope downwards….whilst with lease, the enforcement of donors will can be made to prevail, maintainence can be charged according to cost of living and thus no need for parsi property to go in other hands..This is not rocket science Mr Jimmy

    on ure pOINT 3)
    The question now is that when the great philanthropic souls who built the baugs with the intention that poor Parsees could get an affordable dwelling at very affordable rent, why should the trustees today sell the same at over a crore and that too on a leave & license basis.

    Ok there is a deficiency in your argument here.1) The baugs were built for Parsis, many of them poor and many normal. There was no restriction on non poor zoroastrians from accuring flats but the intention of aiding the poor was also foremost.
    Now see the contradiction in your point.
    If no profit is made from anything , how can one help a poor?The sums donated 100 years back cannot go on forever and if no money collected was the theme , then how would you support the poor?
    ‘Its like saying Parsi General should not charge any money from any parsi but treat the poor patients free!!!!!! I dont need to go on about the absurdity of the same

    Your argument also goes contrary to advise given by some expats of Parsi charity. Too much charity makes one become negligent.The term poor should not be applied to those who do not want to work. Employment from within the colony can be given to those who say they cant find jobs….this will help sustain the charity bill.
    Lets take khusrow baug..how many are poor people therein relative terms to India. You say a crore of ruppes, if the baug is opened up it will go in excess of 5 crores….do u want each n every resident there owning multiple cars to be subsidised in such a way that the maintaincence also cannot be done nor the will of the donors of khusrow baug be enforced due to rent act, so let it demographicaly slide….like the dadar parsi colony….let there be jain societies inside or whatever demographicaly stronger or even cosmopolitan and then lets see if let alone the poor parsi gets a flat but a upper meddle class who are staying therein then can afford one there.

    Again it is not rocket science to maintain a check of misuse by ‘A’ trustee and from monies collected to help the poor too.

    Today the time has come for each and every parsi to realise that to continue to enjoy the assets of our forefathers, there comes a responsibility towards it.To maintain it physically and also for the core reason of making it, that is sustaining it as a Parsi colony only.

    3)on your ” Whenever asked the above question to a BPP trustee and you get a standard reply that the money they earn from the rich who buy flats in Cusrow Baug goes into building other properties in North Mumbai for the poor. Now that’s a big joke.
    A poor widow with modest savings approached a trustee for a flat in Thana. She was told that the price was 19 lakhs and the rent was Rs. 5,000 per month. Affordable rent, Mr. Rustom, for a widow who sustains herself only on her late husband’s meager investments ?”

    Any system can be misused..Cars can be misused ,. if a trustee was to murder someone by driving rashly would you term the whole transportation industry hopeless and uselss and ban all car drivers and paint them as murderers?

    If some one misuses power, then that should be curbed and can be curbed. There is no use cutting the nose to spite the face.
    Now about the rs 5000. Like it or not, people in slums are paying that. Again i agree it becomes difficult for a person to pay that…..but if some trustee has to [ay for the upkeep, wither the community pays or the trustee pays from the pocket. As u have said that lofty philanthropists had paid earlier , again a mistake on your part, each and every zoroastrian contributed in a way and that how coffers were built up thru the years. its time for the nON TRustess also to take up the responsibility of the community. Remenber Dadar jashan trust,young rathestars etc etc etc are now old functionaries built by people a 100 years ago but no one from your generation contributed towards it..and thus the trust diminishes in value. If each and every parsi contributed even 500 rs a month for upkeep of say 1000 poor parsis it might become easy…..after all the notion that ‘trustees’ alone is a parsi responsible for the upkeep without any responsibility from other community members is a faulty one..again i give the example of parsi general..say no parsi feels responsible for contributing towards it…..and feels that only trustees are responsible for doing charity and upkeep and treating the poor and that money given 100 years ago will last forever…..do u really think that is possible.

    It is each and every zoroastrains duty and responsibility, tenant, leasse, truste, poor , rich young , old to sustain this small netwrok with huge assets…and huge assets need huge maintainence..there is no use parking a audi outside, wanting to live in a pasri colony but not being responsible enough to sustain it a parsi colony. And wuth the pressure from the intermarried to do away wth all such under pseudo secularism, and the divide instigated instead of it being bridged, you would have snatched away the right of the next generation zoroastrians from enjoyoing what ure generation has destroyed.

    About asking mr Dadrewalla and the politics and divide, i do hang my head in shame that a generation before mine has put all and everything above the agenda of ‘sustaining zoroastrianism and zoroastrian assets as it was left to them ‘ due to their void of zoroastrian history, legacy which is filled inn with egos and politics including Mr Dadrewalla.

    Let us not cut the nose to spite the face. Instead lets bridge the gap

  8. rustom says:

    @ Mr Gai
    From where did you get “Saying that a Parsi owning a car should not reside in a Parsi Baug is meaningless.”

    Unless you have taken my writing of ” people with multiple cars challenge increase in rent vis a vis cost to maintain/upkeep a property’.

    Its a very big difference unless of course you want to confuse the readers

    About the philanthropy of the parsees of the yore..well then are the ‘trustees’ only termed Parsis today according to you? I mean the monies donated was not only from trustees but lay parsis who formed trusts , today you claim only ‘Trustees/owners’ are solely patented to cary out responsibilities. Tomorrow under the same guise you will state that no one should contribute to parsi Genaral hospital, Parekh dharamshala etc etc as parsis of the yore donated and it is the responsibility of the trustees ALONE to fulfill the charitable needs even though no one else fill in the coffers!!! as if by a majic wand the trustees will get money to fill in the coffers.

    Secondly anohther major damage you promote is very dangerous. Using the garb of poverty and the few poor, you enforce the right to charity to those who park multiple cars outside their homes and are averse of the responsibility to maintain the property they themselves stay in and use for generations.

    Then you talk of the will of the donors. Was it not the will of the donors that the charity os exclusive to the parsis ( practising zoroastrian faith) like charities exclusive for islam, christianity, jains, bohris etc etc. Now can you tell me

    that when a renter thoigh can afford under the guise of pverty takes advantage of the rent act and challenges the upkeep of maintainence vis a vis cost of it nullifying the power bestwoed upon the trustees/owners to enforce this , is going or not going against the will of the donor
    Also can you tell me
    when a renter takes advantage of the rent act and changes the demography of a parsi colony into a cosmopolitan building/society by intermarriage/conversion/following a baba/guru or raising his/her child according the the faith of a foreign spouce or fusing zoroastrian values, gathas with the gita,yasnas with the yagna, geh with the namaz, wherein gathas, bundaishns, yasnas will not be permiteed in other exclusive societies, and when a renter keeps the flat in maiden name, or names of parents even deceased whilst maintaing the faith of a khana, sheikh, or vaz. does the will of the donor get negated too? or not

    As i said that the concept shoudl not be banished and any segment should not be painted with the same brush. The agenda should be the same as the donor’s//zoroastrainism and sustainence first….All of us are the takers of charity and none of us should due to time think ownbers of charity including the renter, and the trustee. The trustee should keep in mind the values of the makers of trusts and the takers should realise they have a responsibility whilst staying in a parsi colony and foremost is that of keeping it as only a Parsi colony.

    If the renters had not taken advantage of the rent act in changing demography, if the renter had not taken advantage of the rent act whilst not paying maintainence vis a vis upkeep of cost….the problem would have not arised and also from the money collected the poor would also be looked after.

    The modfalities will need to be worked on,looked at and the gap bridged….you probably are blaming all trustees for murder and the transportation industry as bad if and when a trustee gets someone killed in the car, someone else can only look at the same way but with another segment ..of the renter….and the blind men will never know about the elephant whilst arguing about it in the legendary story…
    Solutions can be worked on

    1) Look at the problem community is facing.Identify them

    Problems 1) .Main which small communities, states,and even countries fear is demography change due to being small in number . Nations like Japan, UAE, Qatar and our own Himachal, Ladhak, Jammu Kashmir, Andamans have taken actions for not allwoing a demographical change…same steps our forfathers took
    So identify and stop a demographical change…because if we dont, there wont be anything to look after, enjoy and debate..especially when aruments to instugate and segment further are promoted for political reasons

    2) Huge assets..but no responsibility to look after. This specially in the past generation who having got EVERYTHING NOW THINK ITS THEIR right to everything n thus never inculcated the responsibility to look after the agiary, dakhma, colonies, dharamshalas, and the property they themselves stay in.. No responsibility towards filling in coffers..and this was never passed on.

    Thus a need to work on it…people with divisive ideas to be left alone but people with ideas to solve the problem promoted and promotion of the fact that our assets lie in danger of dissolving due to apathy from all of us…as Parsis not on lines od divisions, renter, owner,this and that all of which is created …and the youngsters will not shy away from lookjing after and contributing.

    3) Poverty. Take a real stock. Not on lines of flats wanted, rent not be be increased, want to intermarry and follow something else..but claim poverty to DEMAND a flat. Take a stock of dharamshals for the elderly and poor.Take the stock of what indiciduals and average community member earns and can afford to give charity. Parsis are few and have fewer poor in real terms, it can be eradicated..but first the misuse of the term should be stopped..even I am poor compared to some one else

    4) Number crunching….come to a figure wherein the trust can sustain itself and also help the middle class and poor, once the middle class can afford repay in some way…for example lease deposit amount. it should not be that less that a leasse does not mind letting it go when he wants to challenge the primary will of the donor…maintaining the asset for and as ONLY Parsi or if he wants to default in its maintenance. Also it should nt be that high that a young parsi family cannot afford it.

    There might be more problems but as many answers if the agenda is ‘ for zoroastrianism”….but definately divisiveness that to for pulling down the other’s pants be it other trustee , other faction, other renter etc etc will dissolve all of us…

    • Jimmy Kapadia says:

      Mr Rustom,

      Where have the funds evaporated from the trusts formed by the benefactors who built the baugs ? The upkeep of the baugs were supposed to come from these funds provided.

      • rustom says:

        Mr Kapadia.
        First of all no one said that all funds have evaporated.
        Second, does your wisdom really make you feel that the funds given in the 18th and 19th century will last for ever. Do you not paint your house, or maintain it or save money from you earnings or do you not the these just because you parents , grandparents etc painted your home, maintained it or saved their money, are their savings lasting your life time?

        My god, I pity the young generation and the next generation because the thought you promote is demand ” free medical treatment from say Parsi General hospital as trustees had given the money but not add to the coffers as according to you, money soent is still in the coffers.
        or Charities for athornan schools…because someone in the 19th century made an athornan school we now dont pay for the upkeep and teaching mobedi…because money spent last year and years before that magically comes back into the coffers.
        or would demand to have free sukar /kathi at an agiary because our ancestors donated centurieS ago and since you do not want to either contribute to the fund you close your eyes that with time the funds dwindle, expenses increase and since you do not want to have the responsibility to maintain the core reason of the donor i.e to sustain Zoroastrianism thru our baugs, you do not mind changing the demography or non maintenance of the same by the users. Also just to remind you that the people who are termed ‘ trustee’ are not the only Parsis who have the responsibility to respect the donor’s wishes.

        Also misusing the term poverty to not maintain what one uses,taking refuge in the RAD to change demography of a colony goes against the core principle of the donors.

        Dont you realise, that there will be no ‘Parsi’ colony for the next generation due to the irresponsibility , apathy shown by the thoughts you portray if we under the sheter of RAD allow the change of demography of a parsi colony or if it is no maintained, again the chances of the residents and trustees suffering and if it is bought over by builderrs again the asset we have will no longer exist , also if your wisdom allows you to think that the trusts funds are not in an endless money pit but coffers have to be refiled ,and if we do n ot fill in the coffers misusing poverty, then first the real poor zoroastrians will suffer and then the effect will slowly eat up all community properties.

        This same negligent attitude makes our agiaries, dakhmas,baugs and the thinking of the next generation suffer.

        I shall once again put the solutions…
        Look at the problem community is facing.Identify them

        Problems 1) Demographical change.
        This problem is shared by other communities, states and even Countries. Even countries fear the problem.
        If a demographical change is allowed not only it will go against the prime principle of the donors i.e sustenance of zoroastrianism thru our baugs,we will also not be able to pass the same features you and your previous generation has enjoyed for nearly free without giving back, you will rob the same next generation zoroastrian because of masquerading under poverty when most have cars parked outside their flats or because of intermarriage, and cheating as done by many be keeping flat names under Parsi names whilst a non Parsi family is using the same.

        The same problem has been addressed by other communities, states and countries… Nations like Japan, UAE, Qatar and our own Himachal, Ladhak, Jammu Kashmir, Andamans have taken actions for not allwoing a demographical change…same steps our forfathers took

        So identify and stop a demographical change…because if we dont, there wont be anything to look after, enjoy and debate..especially when arguments to instugate and segment further are promoted for political reasons

        2) Huge assets..but no responsibility to look after.
        Statements like’ where have the funds disappeared.? Do you really think funds given in the 18th, 19th and 20th century will last for ever.

        This specially in the past generation who having got EVERYTHING NOW THINK ITS THEIR right to everything n thus never inculcated the responsibility to look after the agiary, dakhma, colonies, dharamshalas, and the property they themselves stay in..

        No responsibility towards filling in coffers..and this was never passed on.
        Thus a need to work on it…people with divisive ideas to be left alone but people with ideas to solve the problem promoted and promotion of the fact that our assets lie in danger of dissolving due to apathy from all of us…as Parsis not on lines od divisions, renter, owner,this and that all of which is created …and the youngsters will not shy away from lookjing after and contributing.

        3) Poverty. Take a real stock. Not on lines of flats wanted, rent not be be increased, want to intermarry and follow something else..but claim poverty to DEMAND a flat. Take a stock of dharamshals for the elderly and poor.Take the stock of what indiciduals and average community member earns and can afford to give charity. Parsis are few and have fewer poor in real terms, it can be eradicated..but first the misuse of the term should be stopped..even I am poor compared to some one else

        4) Number crunching….come to a figure wherein the trust can sustain itself and also help the middle class and poor, once the middle class can afford repay in some way…for example lease deposit amount. it should not be that less that a leasse does not mind letting it go when he wants to challenge the primary will of the donor…maintaining the asset for and as ONLY Parsi or if he wants to default in its maintenance. Also it should nt be that high that a young parsi family cannot afford it.

        There might be more problems but as many answers if the agenda is ‘ for zoroastrianism”….but definately divisiveness that to for pulling down the other’s pants be it other trustee , other faction, other renter etc etc will dissolve all of us…

      • Jehangir Gai says:

        Dear Jimmy Kapadia,
        By now I believe that Rustom is a stooge of the Trustees who has nothing better to do that write lengthy responses in a futile attempt to “defend” the trustees. The community know what the truth is; so why bother to counter what Rustom says. He deserves to be ignored. Best wishes to you,

      • rustom says:

        Mr Ghai. on your accusation of me being a stooge of the trustees, you can shelter yourself and close yourself to issues that endanger the survival of the community and its maintenance and it not being drifted demographically in the hands of others like many Parsi assets have.

        It is really sad that you make this accusation yet not one intellectual debate against the dangers of a demographical shift which is happening in Parsi colonies. It just shows that the sustenance of Zoroastrianism and the assets being maintained as ‘Zoroastrian assets’ and the same being passed on to coming generation is not in your agenda!

        Like wise you can instigate Parsis to demand free medical treatment from parsi general and other institutions without any one filling in the coffers, only pushing such to closure due to apathy, and greediness !

  9. Mr. Percy N. Elavia says:

    Thank you Sir, a very open minded and guiding parses for those who face such difficult situation in Parsi baug, and now they have stopped accepting Cheques and one has to gather Cash to the tune of 2.5 to 3 thousand Rupees to pay their rents every month ? is this right ??
    Hence pl. guide us time and again as and when it comes in our favour. Thank you Sir and God Bless.
    From A tenent from Godrej Baug.

    • Jehangir Gai says:

      It is not correct. The trustees cannot refused to accept a cheque; they may recover the bank charges in case the cheque gets dishonoured. The resident must can courier the cheque along with a covering note after retaining a photocopy thereof, or ask the Custodian put an endorsement refusing to accept cheque payment. The BPP trustees are a law unto themselves; they want respect but do not understand that respect has to be commanded by one’s own conduct and cannot be demanded.

    • Jehangir Gai says:

      Absolutely. Unfortunately, there are people who, instead of answering the legal issue, are trying to deviate by trying to justify why the law should not be followed!!! Sad indeed that such scant respect is shown for the law.

      • rustom says:

        Yes Mr Ghai

        …..the issue of zoroastrian property going into other hands due to demographical change and being sold due to non maintenance by the renter or the rent act snatching away powers from trustees/owners to enforce the donors will may not be the core issue to you, but in fact it is when we talk of properties built to being sustained as Parsi’ properties.

        Once it changes hands, the argument of less rent, no rent , divisiveness between trustee/renter and looking after the poor all goes for the toss as it will not be one due to demographical change which is not being brought on by trustees but by the renters.

        Ironically’ calling me a stooge of the BPP ‘ is not calling names according to you…yet I only await an intellectual debate against the questions put up…

        1)is stoppage of a demographical change of Zoroastrian assets into something else due to renters taking shelter in rent act acting against the core principle/will of the donors?

        2) Is not appropriation of dues by the renter according to actual maintenance not destroying the property donated by our forefathers

        3) Can trusts and monies given centuries ago and not re-filled by the parsis under the guise that only trustees are responsible ( like saying that only the PM of Sweden or any other country is responsible for contributing towards the roads, maintenance of armed forces , country etc)last for generations?

        4) Isnt it a duty of every Parsi to see that Zoroastrian property do not go in different hands ,,again mainly due to intermarriage…

        5) According to you can a solution be chalked out with real legal eagles who are without any other agenda than sustaining of properties as Zoroastrian Properties’ without dividing the community on lines of trustees v/s renters/ .

        6) Does the RAD give powers to owners/ trustees to enforce the will of the donors

  10. rustom says:

    Yes Yezdi I agree, it diminishes the value of a sincere debate which will impact the future, yet is stoppage of a demographical change viz a viz Zoroastrian , assets, core principle/will of the donors?
    As accused of being a BPP trustee stooge though i have given examples of Parsi Hospital and other institutions sloping southwards due to the non responsibility towards not only building up but sustaining coffers, and countered the logic that donations given centuries ago cannot last thru life times of generations. Even if the accusations are true which I state openly that they are not, can anyone intellectually debate that a demographical change due to intermarriage, due to flats kept in Parsi names yet families of non parsis being raised, due to conversions mainly due to intermarriage, dangers of properties going into other hands due to wills again examples given, and lastly trusts not being able to cope up the maintainance expenditure cause the parsis not only dont want to add or maintain the coffers but dont even want to pay the dues that goes hand in hand with actual maintainence.
    Is the rent act giving any powers to the trustees to maintain and sustain the donors will and principle and act against encroachment?

    Lets do a proper survey of the real poor zoroastrians. Then lets number crunch. Lets build in policies to curtail erring Trustees too. If a zoroastrian family parctising zoroastrianism is evicted the whole community will stand against the erring trustee , but due to the fear of ‘all trustees being bad’ and greediness that showcases pseudo poverty and a shoulder that cannot carry the responsibility though want the benefits for free, closing eyes to dangers and to tenants that create havoc due to greediness and no responsibility, one cannot endanger all the assets especially when the track record of Parsi property being demographically shifted is quite visible.
    Why not have a proper intellectual debate without creating divisions and hatred and propaganda against the divisions created.

  11. Jimmy Kapadia says:

    Rustom,

    The funds left by the benefactors were supposed to be invested wisely by the trustees and the income earned from those investments were to be used for maintenance of the properties. No maintenance of the building was required for at least 20 years after they were built. The salaries of the staff (sweepers, gardeners, etc) were covered by the rent collected from the tenants. So what happened to the interest of 20 years ? The figure is enormous.

    I was referring to private parsee landlords who own buildings and cannot find parsee tenants and not baug landlords.

    Anyways I agree with Jehangir that you could be a stooge of the trustee and have no intent to carry this argument any further. I put the matter to rest.

  12. Jimmy Kapadia says:

    Rustom,

    Don’t harp on the demography of Parsees of Mumbai as most youngsters are migrating abroad and the ones left here have women who require a male with a six figure salary with a separate accommodation….both not possible to comply by each and every parsee male.

    End result ? The women get married outside our community and so does the male. In another 30 years there might not be a baug wholly occupied by ‘Pure Parsees”…..and 70 years from now Zoroastrians anyways will be considered an extinct tribe.

    • rustom says:

      Now that’s digressing.yes parsis r getting married outside n so one more step to encourage to remain within the fold. In any case calling someone a stooge just because of different opinion ,u can brush there problem under d cArpet, especially wen non of you have either addressed d issues mentioned by me.also u cankeep ure eyes closed to the fact of the renters usurping powers under the RAD n to my saying that trustees also can be curbed for misusing powers n instead of creating division,we shud promote working together just as the generations did before urs.

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