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Venkatesh Mannem (Legal consultant)     19 June 2021

Rights of widow over the share of dead husband ancestral pro

Husband of my client died issue-less due to heart ailment within two years from the date of her marriage.  With a view to get rid & avoid share in 25 acres of ancestral property,  in-laws and their relatives thrown out my client forcefully from the matrimonial home and also threatened for dire consequences.

Due to in-laws money and political power police did not file the case of my client.  Seeing all this hurdles and  pains of her widow daughter, my widow client's mother too died due to heart attack within 2 -3 months from the death of her son in law. Father of my widow client is a super senior citizen with 80 plus years of age and no source of income.   With the intervention of elders, In-laws of my widow client signed an agreement to give 2 acre of land (for the time being on the plea that it will take time for partition of 25 acres of ancestral property) and to return 2.50 lakh cash out of the 5.00 lakh taken by them as dowry at the time of marriage, for the purpose of her maintenance.    But later denied to honour their own said agreement.  We filed DVC 2 years back without any relief yet. Opponents not attending to the court not even for once. Please suggest as to how to help my client expeditiously.


 3 Replies

Rama chary Rachakonda (Secunderabad/Highcourt practice watsapp no.9989324294 )     19 June 2021

Regarding query about right on husband property a wife will not have any right over husband self acquired property or his ancestral property.

Venkatesh Mannem (Legal consultant)     19 June 2021

My concern is related to right  of a widow over share of her dead husband, who has a share in his ancestral property. Could you please elucidate.

Vasundhara Singh (Student)     23 June 2021


Under Hindu law, the property is governed under Hindu Succession Act, 1956 which lays down the provisions of distribution and inheritance of a property. It has been mentioned by you that husband died leaving his wife behind and no children. According to the Act, if the husband dies leaving behind his wife, then she will get the share of her husband whenever the ancestral property goes through the partition.   

The widow also has the right to claim maintenance from her father-in-law if she's unable to maintain herself. According to Section 19 of the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act, 1956 states that a widow is legible to get maintenance from her father-in-law if she cannot maintain herself out of her earnings or other property or, where she does not hold any property or, she is not able to obtain the maintenance from the property of her husband, parents, or kids.  

In Ajay Kumar v. Latha @Sharuti, the Supreme Court directed the brother-in-law of the widow to maintain her. In this case, the widow was not allowed to live in her in-laws after the demise of her spouse.  

Therefore, it is advised that your client has the right to share in the property of her deceased husband and her in-laws cannot deny her right and in extreme circumstances, she can also claim maintenance from her father-in-law too.  


Vasundhara Singh  

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