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Kundan Lal Vs. Murari Lal and anr. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectFamily
CourtAllahabad
Decided On
Judge
Reported in(1909)ILR31All339
AppellantKundan Lal
RespondentMurari Lal and anr.
Excerpt:
hindu law - construction of will--request to a female and on her death to her adopted on--interpretation of word 'malik'--request not conditional on adoption. - .....for the will. hargu lal had one son named sant lal, who predeceased him leaving a widow, musammat sukhi. musammat sukhi had four daughters, musammat sendho, musammat gendu, musammat chuna and musammat baso. the plaintiff is the son of musammat baso. the will is dated the 12th of april 1898, and it commences by reciting that the testator had made a will in favour of sant lal. it then goes on to say that all his property/moveable and immoveable, is to remain his own during his life and that afterwards musammat sukhi was to be the malik of all property. it then sets out that musammat sukhi has adopted kundan lal with his approval with all due formalities and that on the death of musammat sukbi kundan lal will succeed her. after the death of kundan lal musammat baso was to succeed. the will.....
Judgment:

Richards and Karamat Husain, JJ.

1. This was a suit to recover possession of certain shops. The plaintiff claims under, a will of one Hargu Lal. The defendants are the persons who would have succeeded to the property but for the will. Hargu Lal had one son named Sant Lal, who predeceased him leaving a widow, Musammat Sukhi. Musammat Sukhi had four daughters, Musammat Sendho, Musammat Gendu, Musammat Chuna and Musammat Baso. The plaintiff is the son of Musammat Baso. The will is dated the 12th of April 1898, and it commences by reciting that the testator had made a will in favour of Sant Lal. It then goes on to say that all his property/moveable and immoveable, is to remain his own during his life and that afterwards Musammat Sukhi was to be the malik of all property. It then sets out that Musammat Sukhi has adopted Kundan Lal with his approval with all due formalities and that on the death of Musammat Sukbi Kundan Lal will succeed her. After the death of Kundan Lal Musammat Baso was to succeed. The will then concludes with special directions that neither Musammat Pari, daughter of the testator, nor any of his son's daughters, were to have any right whatever. It is admitted that Kundan Lal being a daughter son could not under the Hindu law be adopted as a son of Saint Lal. The appellants contend that upon a true construction of the will the reason or motive of the gift to Kundan Lal was that he had been adopted. This is the only question that has been seriously pressed in this appeal. We think that the decision of the court below was correct. The testator for reasons which he gives expressly excluded from sharing in his property the persons who would have taken if there had been no will. Kundan Lal was the testator's sole male descendant. A number of cases have been cited to us including the passage from a judgment of Sir Richard Couch in the case of Fanindra Deb Raikat v. Rajeswar Dass (1885) L.R. 12 I.A. 72: 'The distinction between what is description only and what is the reason or motive of a gift or bequest may often be very fine, but it is a distinction which must be diawn from a consideration of the language and the surrounding circumstances.' We think upon a true consideration of the language of the will and the surrounding circumstances that the adoption of Kundan Lal was not the reason or motive of the gift and that the testator wished to make him the object of his bounty irrespective of his having been legally adopted. We accordingly dismiss the appeal with costs.


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