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Ancestral property

If father died before 1956 intestate leaving ancestral property. which law will be applied hindu sucession act 1956 or old hindu law.


what are the daughter rights in ancestral property if father died before 1956.

whether daughter can get same share as her brother

in the recent supreme court judgement in ARUNACHALA GOUNDER (DEAD) BY LRS. .....

father died in 1949 and he has a self acquired property and supreme court applied old hindu law to decide

 whether property belongs to daughter or father's brother son.

so if father died before 1956 which law applicable to ancestral property. hindu sucession act 1956 or old hindu law.





 8 Replies

kavksatyanarayana (subregistrar/supdt.(retired))     29 March 2022

Old Hindu Law...................................................................................................  .

Dr J C Vashista (Advocate)     30 March 2022

The Act / Law applicable to the property at the time of submitting claim shall apply.

Shashi Dhara   30 March 2022

File suit opposite advocate will argue about  it who knows fate,it takes atleast 20years to decide in court .the court will decide it.

Palak batra   31 March 2022

Dear Querist,


It does not matter whether the father was alive or not when the Hindu Succession Act 1956 was amended to give equal rights to the daughter in her father’s property. Since your father died without a will, the property will be divided equally among all legal heirs. As you are a legal heir, you can make a claim over your father’s property since you have the same right over it as your brother.


The SC had in August 2020 ruled that daughters will have inheritance rights equal to those of sons in the properties of fathers, grandfathers and great-grandfathers right from the codification of the Hindu laws in 1956.




Shweta   02 April 2022

Hey Palak

Could you please elaborate?


Palak batra   02 April 2022

Dear Querist,


As per the latest judgement of  Vineeta Sharma vs Rakesh Sharma on 11 August, 2020 passed by the supreme court of India the daughters have equal rights to father’s property even prior to the enactment of the Hindu Succession Act in 1956 and also stated that inheritance would apply even if the father has died intestate before 1956. 





S reddy   04 April 2022

In your case it is old Hindu law applies, Hindu succession amendment doesn't applicable as Hindu succession act enacted in 1956. Supreme Court in catena of decisions said that if succession opened prior to 1956,Hindu succession act1956 not applicable and old uncodified Hindu law applicable. If 1956 act not applicable, amendment made to it not applicable.

Dr J C Vashista (Advocate)     05 April 2022

In the instant case (as mentioned by the author) 

Whether a sole daughter could inherit her father’s separate property dying intestate? And if so, what would be the order of succession after the death of such daughter?

What did the Supreme Court conclude?

A two-judge bench of Justices S Abdul Nazeer and Krishna Murari which went into ancient Hindu commentaries on inheritance as well as previous decisions by courts, said “from the above discussions, it is abundantly clear that a daughter was in fact capable of inheriting the father’s separate estate…From the… discussions, it is clear that ancient text as also the Smritis, the Commentaries written by various renowned learned persons and even judicial pronouncements have recognised the rights of several female heirs, the wives and the daughter’s being the foremost of them”.

It said “right of a widow or daughter to inherit the self-acquired property or share received in partition of a coparcenary property of a Hindu male dying intestate is well recognised not only under the old customary Hindu Law”, and added “if a property of a male Hindu dying intestate is a self-acquired property or obtained in partition of a co-parcenery or a family property, the same would devolve by inheritance and not by survivorship, and a daughter of such a male Hindu would be entitled to inherit such property in preference to other collaterals”.

The court also said that if a female Hindu dies intestate without leaving any issue, then the property inherited by her from her father or mother would go to the heirs of her father whereas the property inherited from her husband or father-in-law would go to the heirs of the husband. In case a female Hindu dies leaving behind her husband or any issue, then Section 15(1)(a) of the Hindu Succession Act will come into operation and the properties left behind including the properties which she inherited from her parents would devolve simultaneously upon her husband and her issues.

Applying this to the facts of the case, the court said the succession of the suit properties opened in 1967 upon death of Kupayee Ammal and therefore, the 1956 Act shall apply. Thereby Ramasamy Gounder’s daughter’s being Class-I heirs of their father too shall also be heirs and entitled to 1/5th Share in each of the suit properties.

How did the court reach the conclusion?

Tracing the sources of customary Hindu law on inheritance, the court discussed Mitakshara law and looked into among others to ‘Vyavastha Chandrika’, a digest of Hindu Law by Shyama Charan Sarkar Vidya Bhushan which quoted ‘Vrihaspati’ as saying ‘the wife is pronounced successor to the wealth of her husband; in her default, the daughter. As a son, so does the daughter of a man proceed from his several limbs. How then, should any other person (b) take her father’s wealth?”.

The SC also noted that the book quoted Manu as saying “the son of a man is even as himself, and the daughter is equal to the son. How then can any other inherit his property, notwithstanding the survival of her, who is, as it were, himself.”

The top court also examined privy council judgments.

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