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Parvati Devanna Jagadal Vs. Shrinivas Ramchandra Patil - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectProperty
CourtMumbai
Decided On
Case Number Second Appeal No. 654 of 1918
Judge
Reported in(1920)22BOMLR110; 55Ind.Cas.531
AppellantParvati Devanna Jagadal
RespondentShrinivas Ramchandra Patil
DispositionAppeal dismissed
Excerpt:
hindu law - widow-maintenance-personal claim and not a charge on property- decree or arrangement an create charge-liability of heirs for maintenance.;a claim for maintenance by a female member of a joint family is a personal claim against members of the family. it can only be made a charge on the family property by an order of the court or by a properly executed document.;the transferee of joint property from am the properly authorised member of a joint family takes that property free of any claims to maintenance by female members of the family.;where a person, who is personally bound as heir to maintain a widow, is allowed by the court to recover property from the widow, he must in equity secure the widow's right to maintenance. - .....by the 1st defendant. it is settled law now that a claim for maintenance by a female member of a joint family is a personal claim against members of the family, and can only be made a charge on the family property by an order of the court or by a properly executed document. generally speaking the transferee of joint property from the properly authorised member of a joint family takes that property free of any claims to maintenance by female members of the family. the case referred to by the learned appellate judge, yellawa v. bhimangavda ilr (1893) 18 bom. 452, lays down an equitable principle that a court will not allow the heir to recover the family property from the widow, entitled to be maintained out of it, before securing proper maintenance for her. that decision is founded on.....
Judgment:

Norman Macleod, Kt., C.J.

1. This second appeal includes little else except questions of fact. The defendants claim as transferees from Bhagawa, the widow of Ramappaj alleging that she relinquished absolutely her life-estate in her husband's property in favour of the 1st defendant, her mother-in-law. Admittedly there is no transfer of the widow's interest in writing. An attempt has been made to prove it by oral evidence. But even supposing that this evidence were admissible to prove a transfer, the Court has held as a matter of fact that the relinquishment is not proved. I myself should very much doubt whether it could be held that the widow could entirely relinquish her life-estate in her husband's property merely by making an oral statement before the Mamlatdar, or agreeing to the transfer of the Khata to the transferee's name. Then it has been proved that although Bhagawa gave her age as twenty when she made the statement before the Mamlatdar, as a matter of fact she was a minor at the time. Therefore it seems obvious, that even if as a matter of fact there was a relinquishment, if it was done by a widow who was a minor, the decision of both Courts was correct. The appeal must be dismissed with costs.

2. The respondent-plaintiff filed cross-objections to that part of the decree of the learned appellate Judge which laid down that the plaintiff took the property awarded to him subject to the obligation to provide sufficient maintenance to the 1st defendant, and directed that the Subordinate Judge should determine what was proper and sufficient maintenance for the defendant, and should secure the same for her benefit. I think that Mr. Desai is right when he says that the plaintiff-purchaser from defendant No. 6, the adopted son of Bhagawa, took the property free of all claim for maintenance by the 1st defendant. It is settled law now that a claim for maintenance by a female member of a joint family is a personal claim against members of the family, and can only be made a charge on the family property by an order of the Court or by a properly executed document. Generally speaking the transferee of joint property from the properly authorised member of a joint family takes that property free of any claims to maintenance by female members of the family. The case referred to by the learned appellate Judge, Yellawa v. Bhimangavda ILR (1893) 18 Bom. 452, lays down an equitable principle that a Court will not allow the heir to recover the family property from the widow, entitled to be maintained out of it, before securing proper maintenance for her. That decision is founded on the equity that the heir is personally bound to maintain the widow, and if the Court allows him to recover the property from the widow, he must in. equity secure the widow's rights to maintenance. But it is an entirely different question when a person entitled to dispose of family property not charged with any maintenance disposes of that property in favour of an innocent purchaser without notice of any personal claims imposed on the transferor. Even if he had such notice, I apprehend there would be no obligation upon' him to fulfil the personal obligations of his vendor. Therefore in my opinion the decree of the lower appellate Court must be amended and the order of the trial Court restored. It is open of course to the 1st defendant to claim maintenance from the 6th defendant who holds the family property now in the shape of cash instead of land. The appellants must pay the respondents' costs of the appeal and the costs of the 1st respondent's cross-objections.


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