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Daughters are Equal to Sons after Sixty Four Years

Daughters have the right to claim equal share in property rules SC.

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The Hindu Succession Act, 1956 stated that only sons had the right to inherit ancestral property while the daughters had no share in accordance with Hindu Law. Moreover, once the daughter was married she was no longer considered a member of the Hindu Undivided Family (HUF) and all her claims to property ceased to exist.

On September 9, 2005, the Hindu Succession Act was amended, and the daughters were recognized as coparceners and their marital status made no difference to their claim in their father’s property. Additionally, a daughter gained equal shares in the property which was accrued to them by birth.

On August 11, 2020, the question that urged the Supreme Court was, “Does the Hindu Succession (Amendment) ACT, 2005 which gave equal rights to daughters in ancestral property, have a retrospective effect?”

The apex court of India ruled that women have an equal right to a share in the HUF property, regardless of their time of birth, thus, clearing a fifteen-year long dispute which led to lower courts making conflicting decisions.

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Credit: leggerhythms.org

Justices Arun Mishra, S. Abdul Nazeer, and M.R. Shah comprised the bench which ruled this landmark judgement.

The bench stated that the provisions made under Section 6 of the Hindu Succession Act, 1956 conferred that the daughter born before or after the amendment is a coparcener in the same way as a son would be with equal rights and liabilities.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta who led the dispute representing the Union Government said that “The Amendment Act, 2005 is not retrospective but retroactive in operation since it enables the daughters to exercise their coparcenary rights on the commencement of the Amendment Act.”

This judgement has settled the long dispute which arose in the daughters’ right to property.

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The bench has requested the courts concerned to resolve the pending cases within six months.

The exclusion of daughters from the property which was rightfully theirs by birth was plain discrimination and resulted in the oppression of women for decades. This historic judgement is surely going to strengthen women and their fundamental rights and gave women the justice that was long overdue.

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