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Karri Venkamma Vs. Karri Venkatareddi and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectFamily;Property
CourtAndhra Pradesh High Court
Decided On
Case NumberAppeal No. 369 of 1951 and C.M.P. No. 4474 of 1956
Judge
Reported inAIR1959AP158
ActsHindu Succession Act, 1956 - Sections 14(2)
AppellantKarri Venkamma
RespondentKarri Venkatareddi and anr.
Appellant AdvocateM.S. Ramachandra Rao and ;M. Krishna Rao, Advs.
Respondent AdvocateE. Venkatesam and ;M.R. Ramachandra Raju, Advs.
DispositionAppeal allowed
Excerpt:
family - will - section 14 (2) of hindu succession act, 1956 - will alleged to be executed by deceased husband in which he bequeathed his property to his wife - will was declared void - appeal against such order - hindu succession act enacted while appeal was pending - court observed that decree did not restrict her estate in property inherited from her husband - decree was subject matter of appeal therefore had not became final - plaintiff not found to be reversionary heir when wife got absolute estate under provision of section 14. - .....husband. but what is contended is that, under the decree, she got only a restricted estate in her husband's property and, therefore, under sub-section (2) her interest so restricted could not be enlarged. the decree does not, in any way restrict her estate in the property inherited from her husband. it was only a declaratory decree whereunder the will alleged to have been executed by her husband was declared to be a forgery. that apart, sub-section (2) cannot gave any application to the present case as the decree on which reliance is placed is now the subject matter of this appeal and, therefore, has not become final. if venkamma got an absolute estate under the provisions of section 14 of the act, the plaintiffs would not be presumptive reversioners to the estate of her husband. if the.....
Judgment:

K. Subbarao, C.J.

1. This is an appeal against the decree and judgment of the Court of the Subordinate Judge of Eluru in a suit filed by the respondents for a declaration that the will dated 9-2-1947 was not executed by late Ramireddi.

2. The facts are simple. One Ramireddi and Chenchureddi were brothers and constituted members of a joint Hindu family. They divided their properties on 8-2-1947. On 9-2-1947, Ramireddi is alleged to have executed a will whereunder he bequeathed his properties absolutely to his wife Venkamma, sub-ject to the direction mat she should give some amount to his only daughter Subbamma at the time of her marriage. On 10-2-1947, Rami Reddi died. Subbamma also passed away on 13-6-1947. The plaintiffs, who are the sons of Chenchureddi, the divided brother of Ramireddi, filed the aforesaid suit for a declaration that the said will was forgery.

3. The learned Subordinate Judge, on a consideration of the evidence held that the will which was marked as Ex. B-1 was not executed by Ramireddi, On that finding, he gave a declaration that Ex. B-l was not executed by late Ramireddi and that it was void. Karri Venkamma, the defendant and the widow of Ramireddi, preferred the above appeal.

4. Pending the appeal, the Hindu Succession Act 1956 was enacted and it came into force on 18-6-1956. Section 14 of that Act reads :

'1. Any property possessed by a female Hindu whether acquired before or after the commencement of this Act shall be held by her as full owner thereof and not as a limited owner.

2. Nothing contained in Sub-section (1) shall apply to any property acquired by way of gift or under a will of any other instrument or under a decree or order of a civil Court or under an award where the terms of the gift, will or other instrument or the decree, order or award prescribe a restricted estate in such property.'

It is not disputed that, Under Section 14(1), Venkamma would acquire an absolute interest in the property inherited by her from her husband. But what is contended is that, under the decree, she got only a restricted estate in her husband's property and, therefore, under Sub-section (2) her interest so restricted could not be enlarged.

The decree does not, in any way restrict her estate in the property inherited from her husband. It was only a declaratory decree whereunder the will alleged to have been executed by her husband was declared to be a forgery. That apart, Sub-section (2) cannot gave any application to the present case as the decree on which reliance is placed is now the subject matter of this appeal and, therefore, has not become final. If Venkamma got an absolute estate under the provisions of Section 14 of the Act, the plaintiffs would not be presumptive reversioners to the estate of her husband.

If the suit had been filed after the Act came into force, it would not be maintainable. In the circumstances the proper course in our view would be to dismiss the suit on the ground that the plaintiffs were not the presumptive reversioners to the estate of Venkamma's husband and to direct the defendant, in the peculiar circumstances of the base, to pay the costs of the suit to the plaintiffs. We according do so. In the appeal, the parties will bear their own costs.


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