P K SARASWATHI AMMAL Vs. P S KRISHNA IYER
HIGH COURT OF KERALA
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(1.) A short but important question relating to the interpretation of Section 14 of the hindu Succession Act of 1958 comes up for consideration in this case.
(2.) A Mithakshara Hindu died leaving his widow and two sons, the respondent and his younger brother Rama lyer, the husband of the appellant. Rama lyer also died leaving his widow, the appellant, and no children. The respondent, his mother and the appellant effected a partition in December 1952, under which some properties were given to the appellant and the other properties were jointly left with the respondent and his mother. A portion of the lands allotted to the appellant was subsequently acquired by the Government towards the end of 1956 after the hindu Succession Act came into force; and the appellant and the respondent both laid claim to the compensation money. The Government referred the matter to the court and both the tower Courts have held that the respondent alone is entitled to the amount and the appellant is not.
(3.) SUB-SECTION (1) of Section 14 of the Act enacts that any property possessed by a female Hindu, whether acquired before or after the commencement of the Act, shall be held by her as full owner and not as a limited owner. An explanation is added to this sub-section, which explains that 'property in the subsection includes both movable and immovable property acquired by a female Hindu by inheritance or devise, or at a partition, or in lieu ot maintenance or arrears of maintenance, or by gift by any person, whether a relative or not, before, at or after her marriage, or by her own skill or exertion, or by purchase or by prescription, or in any manner whatsoever, and also any such property held by her as stridhana immediately before the commencement of the Act. Sub-section (2) then provides that nothing contained in sub-section 1 shall apply to any property acquired by way of gift or under a will or any other instrument or under a decree or order of a civil Court or under an award, where the terms of the gift, will or other instrument or the decree, order or award prescribe a restricted estate in such property.;
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