B.R. Gavai, J.
1. Rule. Rule made returnable forthwith.
Heard, by consent.
2. The Petition arises out of the peculiar facts and circumstances. A one time settlement was arrived at between the Petitioners and the Respondent-Bank vide the terms and conditions dated 20 January 2017. As per the said settlement, an amount of Rs.40,00,000/- (Rupees Forty Lacs only) was to be paid by the Petitioners to the Respondent-Bank.
3. It is not in dispute that when the Petitioners had approached this Court, an amount of Rs.35,00,000/- (Rupees Thirty Five lacs only) had already been paid by the Petitioners to the Respondent-Bank. However, the Petitioners were required to approach this Court since the bank sought revocation of settlement on the ground that the post dated cheques are not deposited.
4. When the matter was listed before us on 19 June 2017, the learned counsel appearing for the Petitioners made a categorical statement that the Petitioners are willing to pay the remaining amount of Rs.5,00,000/- (Rupees Five Lacs only) along with the interest as agreed much prior to 20 July 2017, which was the agreed date. It is not in dispute that the agreed interest comes to an amount of Rs.71,750/- (Rupees Seventy One Thousand Seven Hundred Fifty only).
5. During the pendency of the Petition, an amount of Rs.5,00,000/- (Rupees Five Lacs only) has already been paid by the Petitioners to the Respondent-Bank totalling to agreed Rs.40,00,000/- (Rupees Forty Lacs only). The Petitioners have brought along with them a Demand Draft of an amount of Rs. 71,750/- (Rupees Seventy One Thousand Seven Hundred Fifty only) drawn in favour of the Respondent-Bank.
6. Shri Cama, the learned counsel appearing on behalf of the Respondent-Bank submits that, the matter is purely contractual between the parties. He submits that when the terms between the parties are reduced into writing, the parties are bound to comply with the same and any deviation therefrom, is not permissible. He further submits that since the Petitioners have not provided Post dated cheques, on non-fulfilment of the said conditions, the Respondent- Bank is justified in revoking the settlement.
7. The Respondent-Bank is a nationalized bank and as such the State within a meaning of Article 12 of the Constitution of India. It is settled law that every organ of the State is required to adhere the principles of reasonableness, equity, fairness and good conscience. A very essence of the settlement is that an amount of Rs.40,000/- (Rupees Forty Lacs only) along with the interest, has to be paid by the Petitioners to the Respondent-Bank. When the Petitioners have in essence complied with the terms and conditions, merely because the mode is different, in our considered view, cannot be a ground for the bank to revoke the settlement unilaterally. In that view of the matter, we find that the stand taken by the Bank would not stand the touchstone of the parameters laid down by the Apex Court under Article 14 of the Constitution of India. We therefore, find that the action of the bank is not justified in law.
8. Rule is therefore, made absolute in the following terms-
a) The Respondent-Bank is directed to act upon the terms and conditions of the settlement as agreed vide communication dated 20 January 2017, at Annexure-A, without insisting upon the condition of deposit of Post dated cheques.
b) We hold that, since as on date the entire amount of Rs.40,00,000/- (Forty Lacs only) as per the said settlement stands paid by the Petitioners and since the Petitioners have now handed over a Demand Draft of Rs.71,750/- (Rupees Seventy One Thousand Seven Hundred Fifty only) towards the interest, the terms and conditi
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ons as agreed vide communication dated 20 January 2017, stands completely fulfilled. c) We direct the learned counsel appearing on behalf of Respondent-Bank to accept the said Demand Draft towards the interest dues. d) The Respondent-Bank shall do all that is necessary in terms of the settlement, so as to release the Petitioners from the liability of the loan. e) No order as to costs.