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Mangama Guruvappa Naicken Vs. Rajama Naicken and ors. - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectFamily
CourtChennai
Decided On
Judge
Reported in14Ind.Cas.148a
AppellantMangama Guruvappa Naicken
RespondentRajama Naicken and ors.
Cases ReferredSeshayya v. Narasamma
Excerpt:
document, construction of - agreement between hindu husband and wife--stipulation that, on death of either, the other was to enjoy with full right--whether confers widow's estate. - - it provides that both should jointly enjoy the property, but neither should alienate it. it is to the effect that in case of the death of either the husband or the wife, the other should enjoy the land with full right. ' the question is, what did the parties mean by the expression with full right'? the appellant contends that it means only that the survivor should enjoy the whole property......her husband, who was suffering from physical deformity. the object of exhibit j was to induce the wife to live with her husband. it provides that both should live together in the husband's house, and contains certain stipulations with respect to the property mentioned therein. it does not appear that that was all the property owned by the husband. in fact, the house in which the two were to live together is not dealt with in the agreement. it provides that both should jointly enjoy the property, but neither should alienate it. then follows the clause whose construction is in dispute. it is to the effect that in case of the death of either the husband or the wife, the other should enjoy the land with full right.' the question is, what did the parties mean by the expression with full.....
Judgment:

1. The question in this second appeal relates to the construction of a compromise entered into between the 1st defendant and her deceased husband, Exhibit J in the case. The 1st defendant had been living apart from her husband, who was suffering from physical deformity. The object of Exhibit J was to induce the wife to live with her husband. It provides that both should live together in the husband's house, and contains certain stipulations with respect to the property mentioned therein. It does not appear that that was all the property owned by the husband. In fact, the house in which the two were to live together is not dealt with in the agreement. It provides that both should jointly enjoy the property, but neither should alienate it. Then follows the clause whose construction is in dispute. It is to the effect that in case of the death of either the husband or the wife, the other should enjoy the land with full right.' The question is, what did the parties mean by the expression with full right'? The appellant contends that it means only that the survivor should enjoy the whole property. That is not the ordinary meaning of the words, apart from anything in the context. They would certainly mean 'absolutely' and import the right to alienate the property. The next stipulation in the document is that if either of the spouses should refuse to live with the other, he or she should forfeit his or her right to the property and the other spouse should be entitled to obtain a declaratory decree to that effect and that till such a decree is obtained, 'neither should alienate the land.' This implies that both would have the right to alienate after the decree is obtained. The right of alienation of both is regarded by the instrument as standing on the same footing. The instrument was evidently drawn up with professional help and the use of the expression 'with full right' cannot be regarded as the result of careless draftsmanship. We cannot say that the Judge was wrong in construing the expression in the sense that the words ordinarily bear, Mr. Anantha Krishna Iyer contends that, ordinarily, a husband should not be taken to intend to confer on his wife more than a woman's estate. We cannot agree with him. The rule applicable to a gift to a widow is not necessarily applicable to a grant to a wife. Seshayya v. Narasamma 22 M.P 357 is inapplicabe to the circumstances of this case. In any event, we are unable to say that the Judge's construction of the document in question in this case is wrong.

2. We dismiss the second appeal with costs.


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