Grandchildren can’t claim right to grandfather’s self acquired property: HC

Grandchildren cannot claim a share in the self-acquired property of their paternal grandfather if it had been allotted to their father in a family partition in his capacity as legal heir and not as a coparcener under the Hindu Succession Act 1956, the Madras High Court has ruled.

In a judgment reserved in the Principal Seat of the High Court and delivered in its Bench here, Justice P.R. Shivakumar held that neither the sons nor daughters of a person could claim share in a property he had received under the rule of succession provided in the Hindu Succession Act.

The verdict was delivered in an appeal suit filed by Purasawalkam Permanent Fund challenging a civil decree passed by a Chennai City Civil Court on August 6, 2008 in favour of twin sisters who claimed two-fifth share in a property mortgaged by their father, with the appellant, in 1995.

Reversing the civil court decree, Mr. Justice Shivakumar held that the lower court had rendered an “erroneous finding without adverting to the principles of law governing inheritance of coparcenary properties and succession to the property of a male Hindu under the provision of the 1956 Act.” The judge also directed the twin sisters to pay cost of litigation to the appellant after holding them guilty of approaching the court with “unclean hands and with a mala fide intention” of preventing the appellant from auctioning the property to realise the loan availed by their father along with interest.

Pointing out that the twin sisters’ father, brother as well as elder sister had remained ex parte before the city civil court with respect to the property spread over two grounds in Nungambakkam in Chennai, the judge said that it created a doubt that the suit could have been filed in collusion with them.

“The fact that hectic attempts were made not only by the plaintiffs (twin sisters) but also their elder sister, by filing two earlier suits, with a view to getting an injunction restraining the appellant from auctioning the property and the fact that the present suit was filed without even discharging the mortgage debt can even be viewed as an abuse of process of court,” the judge added.

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Printable version | Jan 13, 2021 2:03:44 PM |

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