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Right under hindu succession act

Querist : Anonymous (Querist) 03 April 2020 This query is : Resolved 
Unmarried son died without will. Out of his own income he purchase one immovable property. He was staying with his step mother. Step mother is alive. Whether step mother includes in class 1 of Legal Heir defination.
Raj Kumar Makkad (Expert) 03 April 2020
The expression mother under section 6 of Hindu Succession Act, includes Step-mother so she falls within the ambit of mother and is thus entitled for the estate of deceased step son. Refer to Dular Koeri Versus Dwarka Nath (1905) ILR 32Cal 234.
Rajendra K Goyal (Expert) 04 April 2020
From the language seem to be an academic query.
The author has not informed:
1. How he is concerned?
2. Whether, father, mother, brother, sister, any other near relative alive.
3. What is the religion?
4. Whether step mother married his father after death of his mother or during life time of mother?
Rajendra K Goyal (Expert) 04 April 2020
If the author is Hindu succession is as under:

6. General rules of succession in the case of males.—
The property of a male Hindu dying intestate shall devolve according to the provisions of this Chapter—
(a) firstly, upon the heirs, being the relatives specified in Class I of the Schedule ;
(b) secondly, if there is no heir of Class I, then upon the heirs, being the relatives specified in Class II of the Schedule ;
(c) thirdly, if there is no heir of any of the two classes, then upon the agnates of the deceased ; and
(d) lastly, if there is no agnate, then upon the cognates of the deceased.

CLASS I
Son ; daughter ; widow ; mother ; son of pre-deceased son ; daughter of a pre-deceased son ; son of a pre-deceased daughter ; daughter of a pre-deceased daughter ; widow of a pre-deceased son ; son of a predeceased son of a pre-deceased son ; daughter of a pre-deceased son of a pre-deceased son ; widow of a pre-deceased son of a pre-deceased son.

CLASS-II

I. Father.
II. (1) Son’s daughter’s son, (2) Son’s daughter’s daughter, (3) brother, (4) sister.
III. (1) Daughter’s son’s son, (2) daughter’s son’s daughter,
(3) daughter’s daughter’s son, (4) daughter’s daughter’s daughter.
IV. (1) Brother’s son, (2) sister’s son, (3) brother’s daughter, (4) sister’s daughter.
V. Father’s father ; father’s mother.
VI. Father’s widow ; brother’s widow.
VII. Father’s brother ; father’s sister.
VIII.Mother’s father ; mother’s mother.
IX. Mother’s brother ; mother’s sister.
Explanation.—In this Schedule, reference to a brother or sister do not include references to a brother or sister by uterine blood.

Hemant Agarwal (Expert) 04 April 2020
WHILE AGREEING WITH THE ABOVE EXPERTS:
1. IF Step-Mother, was legally & duly married to Father of Deceased Son, THEN irrespective of any criteria, the said Step-Mother, is irrefutably a class-I legal heir and is entitled to claim her unmarried & intestate Step-Son's Property, without any further legal references.

Keep Smiling .... Hemant Agarwal
VISIT: www.chshelpforum.com
P. Venu (Expert) 04 April 2020
In my understanding, step-mother is not among the heirs in Class I; she could only be a Class II heir at item VI, being the Father's widow.

Neither the provisions of Section 6 (even after amendment) or the decision of Calcutta High Court in Dular Koer vs Dwarka Nath Misser is of any relevance or application to the query posted.
Rajendra K Goyal (Expert) 05 April 2020
Since father's widow (VI above) is class II heir, step mother is class II heir.
Hemant Agarwal (Expert) 05 April 2020
INTROSPECT ON THIS TECHNICALITY;
1. Step-Mother would be classified as Class-II Legal Heir, "ONLY" the purpose of Claim on Deceased Husband's Property, in the capacity of "Father's Widow".

2. Here in the case instant Step-Mother is proposed to be claiming Property of her Deceased Step-Son, in Capacity of "Step Mother" and not as "Father's Widow".

INTERESTING QUESTION !
ANY ANSWERS PLEASE ON ABOVE ?

Keep Smiling .... Hemant Agarwal
VISIT: www.chshelpforum.com
T. Kalaiselvan, Advocate (Expert) 06 April 2020
After seeing the controversial opinions of few experts mentioning that the step mother would come under class I legal heir of the deceased male dying intestate, I think the experts who have expressed the step mother as class I legal heir may withdraw their opinion, because the law has not never mentioned anywhere that the step mother is one among the class I legal heirs.
The complete list of class I legal heirs of male Hindu duying intestate is given below for information:


Class I heirs:-

The property of a Hindu Male dying intestate would be given first to heirs within Class I. They are:
i. Mother,
ii. Widow,
iii. Daughter,
iv. Son,
v. Widow of a predeceased son,
vi. Son of a predeceased son,
vii. Daughter of a predeceased son,
viii. Widow of a predeceased son of a predeceased son,
ix. Daughter of a predeceased son of a predeceased son,
x. Son of a predeceased son of a predeceased son,
xi. Daughter of a predeceased daughter, and
xii. Son of a predeceased daughter.

Some new heirs are added by Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act, 2005. They are:

i. Son of a predeceased daughter of a predeceased daughter,
ii. Daughter of a predeceased daughter of a predeceased daughter,
iii. Daughter of a predeceased son of a predeceased daughter, and
iv. Daughter of a predeceased daughter of a predeceased son.

Please note that the adoptive mother can be termed as mother for all the practical purposes and she is one among the legal heirs of the male Hindu.
T. Kalaiselvan, Advocate (Expert) 06 April 2020
Unfortunately the step mother falls under category VI of the Class II legal heirs:
6] Category VI -
a) Father’s widow. [Step mother].
b) Brother’s widow.

Also please note that the Hindu Succession Act 1956 does not apply to the property of a Hindu who is married under the Special Marriage Act to a non -Hindu.


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