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Kamala Bai Vs. Bhagirathi Bai - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
SubjectFamily
CourtChennai
Decided On
Judge
Reported in(1915)ILR38Mad45; 16Ind.Cas.939
AppellantKamala Bai
RespondentBhagirathi Bai
Cases ReferredSee Marya Pillai v. Sivabagyathachi
Excerpt:
hindu law - mitakshara--succession--succession to estate of deceased maiden--priority as between stepmother and maternal aunt. - .....jetha appaji 32 b.k 409 : 10 bom. l.r. 522 that, in default of both the mother and the father, a maiden's property goes to the father's sapindas. the same view was accepted by the calcutta high court in dwarka nath roy v. sarat chandra singh roy 39 c.p 319 : 15 c.w.n. 1036 : 15 c.l.j. 23 : 11 ind. cas. 872 though, in that case, there was no contest between the relations of the mother and the father. in the mitakshara, there are no express texts dealing with, the succession to the property of a maiden in default of the mother and of the father; the text stopping with succession to the parents, the word parents' being interpreted to mean the mother and then the father. bat, in the case of the property of a childless married woman, the succession is carried further down. it is stated that.....
Judgment:

1. The plaintiff in this case claims the property sued for as the maternal aunt of a deceased maiden of a Hindu, family. The defendant is the step-mother of the maiden. The question for decision is whether the plaintiff is entitled to preferential rights over the defendant. The Bombay High Court held in Tukaram v. Narayan Ramchandra 36 B.k 339 : 14 Bom. L.R. 89 : 14 Ind. Cas. 438 and Janglubai v. Jetha Appaji 32 B.k 409 : 10 Bom. L.R. 522 that, in default of both the mother and the father, a maiden's property goes to the father's sapindas. The same view was accepted by the Calcutta High Court in Dwarka Nath Roy v. Sarat Chandra Singh Roy 39 C.p 319 : 15 C.W.N. 1036 : 15 C.L.J. 23 : 11 Ind. Cas. 872 though, in that case, there was no contest between the relations of the mother and the father. In the Mitakshara, there are no express texts dealing with, the succession to the property of a maiden in default of the mother and of the father; the text stopping with succession to the parents, the word parents' being interpreted to mean the mother and then the father. Bat, in the case of the property of a childless married woman, the succession is carried further down. It is stated that the property goes to the parents, and, in default * * * * * *, which may be interpreted to mean to their sapindas' as Mr. Sitaram Row contends. The Viramitrodaya does not deal specifically with the succession to a maiden's property at all, but provides for the succession to the property of a childless married girl in terms similar to those used in the Mitakshara. We sea no reason for not accepting the view of the Bombay High Court, that the sapindas, both ot the father and mother, must be understood to mean the same persons as the mother becomes a member of the father's family after the marriage. In this view, the defendant, as the wife of the deceased maiden's father, would be a nearer heir than the plaintiff. But Mr. Sitaram Row contends that the father's widow could not inherit his property as a sapinda. Be relies on the prevalent rule that female gotraja sapindas do not inherit as agnate relations taking the rank which they would be entitled to if their claims were based on sapindas relationship. With regard to the succession to a male's property, this rule, no doubt, has, been enforced in this Court. See Balamma v. Pullaya 18 M.k 168 : M.L.J. 22 and Thayammal v. Annamalai Mudali 19 M.p 35. But, in the case of succession to stridhanam property, a daughter has been held to be entitled to inherit as sapinda, whether the succession has to be traced through the father or the husband. See Marya Pillai v. Sivabagyathachi 21 M.L.J. 850 : (1911) 2 M.W.N. 168 : 10 M.L.T. 494 : 12 Ind. Cas. 128. We see no reason why we should not adopt the same view with, regard to the wife. Moreover, there is much support in the Mitakshara for the view that a widow inherits her husband's property as sapinda, being one half of the husband's body.

2. We, therefore, agree with the District Judge that the plaintiff is not entitled to succeed in preference to the defendant, and we dismiss the second appeal with costs.


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