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CONTENTS

CHAPTERS
PAGE NO.

1.INTRODUCTION AND
HISTORICAL BACKGROUND……………………….……………….5

2. GENERAL RULES OF SUCCESSION
FOR MALES AND FEMALES…………………………………………8

3.GENERAL PROVISIONS RELATING
TO SUCCESSION(S.18-28)…………………………………………….12

4.CONCLUSION………………………………………………………...20

BIBLIOGRAPHY………………………………………………………...22

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INTRODUCTION & HISTORICAL
BACKGROUND
There are certain general provisions relating to the succession, as laid down from section 18
to 28 of the Hindu Succession Act, 1956. These provisions apply to all the properties
irrespective of the fact whether it is left by a male or a female Hindu dying intestate. These
provisions are supplementary to the provisions in section 5 to 17 of the Act. Moreover, the
provisions are not only explanatory but some of them lay down substantive rules involving
legal principles.
Before 17 June 1956 the succession of Hindus was regulated by classic Hindu law. 1 The
Hindu Succession Act2 is a codification of the Hindu law of intestate succession and came
into operation on 17 June 1956. It introduced key changes to classic Hindu law of intestate
succession. The Hindu Succession Act is, to a large extent, a codification of the Hindu law of
succession.3 It makes provision for certain changes to the classic Hindu law of succession,
and although it is in essence a codification of the Mitakshara law of succession, it is
uniformly applicable to all the schools of Hindu law in India.4
Classic Hindu law allows two modes of devolution, namely survivorship of coparcenary
property, and succession of separate property. Only males are entitled to a share in the
coparcenary property. Upon the death of the male coparcener his share in the coparcenary
property falls back into the coparcenary and the rest of the surviving coparceners’ shares are

1 Mulla’s principles of Hindu law vol I (19ed 2005) 101–363 and C Rautenbach ‘Hindu law of
succession’(2ed 2006) 269–287.
2 Act 30 of 1956.
3 It does not make provision for the survivorship as a mode of devolution regarding the joint
family property.
4 Desai Mulla’s principles of Hindu law vol II (19ed 2005) 283–284.
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She has equal rights and responsibilities in the coparcenary property and is allotted the same share as a son. The wife or other female heirs of the deceased coparcener. introduced the first revolutionary change to the Hindu law of succession by affording a female heir. section 6 as discussed above.6 If a coparcener dies leaving a female heir. a share in the coparcenary property. was replaced by a new section 6. have no right to the coparcener’s in the coparcenary property. The abolition of the limited woman’s estate was the second most important inroad into the classic Hindu law of succession. 7 In terms of Explanation 2 of s 6 a partitioned coparcener who has separated himself from the coparcenary before the death of the deceased is excluded from taking a share in succession.adjusted accordingly. 3 | Page . 8 In 2005. 9which removed the gender discriminatory provisions in the ‘old’ section 6. 10 Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Government of India Hindu law reform (1965) 32. The Act is not retroactive and partitions before 9 September 2005 have to conform to the ‘old’ section 6. his share in the coparcenary property will devolve by means of succession and not survivorship. if a female inherited property from a male or stridhana from another female. she received only a limited woman’s estate which meant that she was the owner of the property for as long as she lived.10 In terms of classic Hindu law. 6 M Shastri Status of Hindu women: a study of legislative trends and juridical behaviour (1999) 123. 9 In terms of the Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act 39 of 2005 which came into operation on 9 September 2005. In terms of the new provisions. a daughter of a coparcenar in a joint Hindu family becomes a coparcener in her own right. Section 14(1) of the Act abolished the limited woman’s 5 As specified in Class I of the Schedule. is calculated by taking his share immediately before the time of his death into consideration.7 The share of the deceased coparcener. her ownership was restricted in all other respects. 130–136. before its amendment in 2005. Section 6 of the Act. 8 Explanation 1 of s 6. 5 and the son of a daughter of a deceased Hindu. but although she had full and exclusive ownership of the property during that time. who succeeds.

13 S Yadav ‘Women. 11 Vidya v Nand Ram 2001 10 SCC 747. Such a right was only available to the male beneficiaries.12 Section 23 used to limit the right of a female regarding the dwelling house to a right of residence only. Although these changes have been applauded by Indian scholars. Although female beneficiaries became owners of the dwelling house left by the deceased in equal shares with the male beneficiaries. section 14(1) is retroactive and applies to limited woman’s estates and property acquired before the commencement of the Act. it could be disruptive to the families living in it. they were not allowed to have the house partitioned. 12 GCV Subba Rao. Section 23 was repealed by the Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act of 2005 and it is nowadays possible for a female to claim partition of the dwelling house. Law and Judiciary in India’ in Sharma (ed) Justice and social order in India (1994) 309. she becomes the full owner of such property without any limitations. some are of the opinion that the changes are not comprehensive enough to remove all gender discriminatory provisions in the Hindu law of succession. 13 The purpose of section 23 was to protect the rights of the sons of the deceased who act as the providers of the joint family. 11If a female acquires property in any way whatsoever. Such an argument can equally be applied to the right of the male beneficiaries of the deceased. Under classic Hindu law. Furthermore. 4 | Page . stridhana was classified in various categories. Section 15 of the Act abolishes this classification and provides for only one uniform scheme of succession of stridhana. They have the right to claim partition regardless of whether such partition would be disruptive to the female beneficiaries having a share in the dwelling house.estate and converted existing limited woman’s estates into full estates. Family law in India: Hindu law and Mohammedan law (1995) 314. If a female had the right to claim partition of the dwelling house. and who rely on their right to reside with their families in the dwelling house.

GENERAL RULES OF SUCCESSION FOR MALES AND FEMALES General Rules of Succession to the property of a Hindu male – The Hindu Succession Act. still retains the dictionary of the old Hindu law where succession to the property of a Hindu male and a Hindu female was dealt with separately. 5 | Page . The persons included in these categories are mentioned in the Schedule to the Act. failing which to agnates and thereafter to cognates. Sections 8 to 13 deal with succession to the property of a Hindu male. agnates and cognates. Section 8 lays down the order of priority among these classes of heirs by laying down that the property will first go to the Class I heirs and in their default to Class II heirs. The heirs of a Hindu male are broadly of four types – Class I. 1856. Class II.

Section 13 provides the modes of computation of degrees among the agnates and cognates for the purpose of determining their order of succession. however proximate. The act by section 14 confers absolute ownership on all females in respect of all properties in their possession. it went to her heirs and if it was the later.e. If it was the former. however proximate and all the legal heirs of the deceased were excluded. whether acquired before or after the commencement of the Act. General Rules of succession in the case of females: Under the law. prior to the Act. i. etc. will always be preferred over a cognate. married or unmarried. It also varied according as she was married or unmarried.Section 9 lays down that Class I heirs are simultaneous heirs. no one excludes the other. Section 10 lays down rules of distribution of property among Class I heirs. however remote. This Act ignores all such distinction for the succession to female’s property and provides a uniform law for all female Hindus. This is a divergence from classical Hindu law. etc. or was acquired by her by inheritance or by partition. 6 | Page . it went to the heirs of a person from whom she had inherited it from whose share it was taken out on partition. And section 15 lays down the rules for the devolution of such property on the death of the female in the event she has not made a testamentary disposition of the same under section 30. succession to a female’s property varied according as the property was her Stridhan technically so called. while Class II heirs. Section 11 lays down rules of distribution of property among a category of Class II heirs. The rules of descent again were different in different schools.. belonging to one school or another. and according as shewas married in an approved or in an unapproved form. the heirs in the previous category are preferred to later categories. who are listed in nine categories in the Schedule. Section 12 lays down that agnates. all take simultaneously in accordance with the rules of distribution of property among them. where all the coparceners succeeded to the property of the deceased and all other relations.

In order that properties which may have been inherited by a female Hindu and which on her death may not got to be in families who should not reasonably have any expectations in respect thereof. dies intestate and leaves behind children from her previous husband. and (e) Lastly. upon the mother and father. In view of the proviso to the definition of “related” in section 3 (j). which provides that the property would devolve in the same order and according to the same rules as would have applied if the property had been the father’s or the husband’s as the case may be. who had inherited property from her husband. sub-section (2) makes a very important exception in respect of such property. such children along with the children of the second husband will succeed simultaneously to her. Besides the above order of devolution. upon the sons and daughters (including the children of any predeceased son or daughter) and the husband: (b) Secondly. Reference may also be made to the general provisions relating to order of succession and manner of distribution among heirs of a female provided for in section 16. (d) Fourthly. It provides that where a female Hindu had inherited property from her father or mother and she died leaving behind neither children nor grand children.Devolution of property: The property of a female Hindu dying intestate shall devolve according to the rules set out in Section 16: (a) Firstly. upon the heirs of the father. Similarly. It appears that the heirs of a female Hindu will include her illegitimate children born from another husband also. any property inherited by a female Hindu from her husband or from her father-in. will be determined in accordance with Rule 3 laid down in section 16. and such person had died intestate in respect thereof immediately after intestate’s death. 7 | Page . Thus. though she might have left behind her husband the property would not go to her husband but revert to the heirs of the father.. upon the heirs of the husband. upon the heirs of the mother. upon the heirs of the husband. it appears that in case a female Hindu. (c) Thirdly.law would devolve in the absence of any children or grandchildren of the deceased. As to who will be the heirs in such cases.

16. the chances of a property possessed by a female. the children of each predeceased son of a daughter will take between them such share which they said predeceased son or daughter would have inherited had he or she been alive at the time of the intestate’s death. rule 1. the father or the mother. Another important point worth noting is that unlike the textual law in the absence of the son or daughters and the husband. as the case may be. Thus. the father or the mother in the same manner. have been removed. and therefore. 15 Sec.16 This principle of property inherited by a female devolving on her death on the heirs of the person from whom she had inherited is governed by the devolution of inherited property of a female under the original Hindu Law also. and the husband.15 In the case of a property held by the intestate by inheritance it will devolve on the heirs of a person from whom she had inherited that property in such a manner as if the devolution is to take place of the property of that person and that person had died immediately on the death of the intestate. the father or the mother. (d) and (e) mentioned above. 16 Sec. 8 | Page . while the Act seeks to change the law of devolution in respect of all property passed by a female it maintains that with regard to property acquired by her by inheritance.other rules of succession are that all the heirs of any one of the above classes will take the property simultaneously14. the father or the mother had died immediately after the death of the intestate. the heirs of the husband have been given preference to the mother. 16. The same principle will apply to the cases where property other than inherited property is to devolve and the heirs are of classes (b). 16. the father and their heirs. per stripes and as tenant-in-common and where an intestate leaves the children from a predeceased son or daughter of her. In these cases the property will devolve upon the heirs of the husband. as if property devolving is the property of the said husband. that is they are the heirs of the husband. rule 3. rule 2. 14 Sec. being lost to the family to which she comes to belong after her marriage.

Section 18 talks about half blood and full blood relations and succession among them. Moreover. Section 20 is about succession regarding posthumous child. deal with presumption in cases of simultaneous death and preferential right or right of pre-emption respectively. 1956. as laid down from section 18 to 28 of the Hindu Succession Act. These provisions apply to all the properties irrespective of the fact whether it is left by a male or a female Hindu dying intestate. Concept of Escheat. the 9 | Page . wherein absence of any legal heirs. property passes to the government and other rules till section 28 of the act are expressly dealt under the chapter of general rules of succession.GENERAL PROVISIONS IN RELATION TO SUCCESSION (section 18 to 28) There are certain general provisions relating to the succession. whereas section 19 deals with per stripes and per capita rules. Section 21 and 22.

JOINT TENANCY AND TENANCY-IN-COMMON. Full blood preferred to half-blood. But the rule cannot be invoked when a particular heir is preferred to another by operation of any rule affecting the order of succession. It says that when two or more heirs succeed to the property of an intestate. etc. if the nature of the relationship is same in every other respect.— Section 18 states that. Two persons are said to be related to each other by full blood when they are descended from a common ancestor by the same wife. Instances of exceptions to the general rule about distribution per capita are laid down under Rules 1.” From the provisions of the section it is clear that a full-blood relation is preferred to half-blood relation. The section lays down a general rule of distribution of the property. On the death of one of 10 | P a g e . and by half-blood when they are descended from a common ancestor but by different wives.—Joint tenancy is the ownership of property in common by several persons having a right of survivorship. The words ‘full-blood’ and ‘half-blood’ have been explained in section 2 (e) of the Act.Section 19— Section 19 of the act provides that. “If two or more heirs succeed together to the property of an intestate they shall take the property— (a) Save as otherwise expressly provided in this Act. the full sister’s daughter shall be preferred to half brother’s son. Similarly a full sister excludes a half sister. provided the nature of relationship is same in every other respect.provisions are not only explanatory but some of them lay down substantive rules involving legal principles.blood shall be preferred to heirs related by half-blood. “Heirs related to an intestate by full. 3 and 4 of section 10 and Rule 2 of section 16.” Section 18 lays down a rule of general applicability to male and female heirs alike but the applicability is subject to the words. Section 18 makes it clear that the heirs related by full-blood shall be preferred to heirs related by half-blood. per capita and not per stripes. and (b) As tenants-in-common and not as joint tenants.Section 18. Thus. “if the nature of the relationship is the same in every other respect. they take the property per capita and as tenants-in-common unless there is an express provision to the contrary. Mode of succession to two or more heirs.

XVI (reprint.the joint tenants. In short.Section 20—Section 20 provides that.F. The child in embryo is treated as in esse for various purposes when it is for his benefit to be so treated. the property vests in the survivor or survivors to the exclusion of the heirs of the deceased joint tenant. This section recognizes that rule of beneficient indulgence and the child in utero although subsequently born is to be deemed to be born before the death of the intestate and inheritance is to be deemed to vest in the child with effect from the date of the death of the intestate. his heirs succeed to the property left by the deceased. 192. “It is by fiction or indulgence of the law that the rights of a child born in justo matrimonio are regarded by reference to the moment of conception and not of birth and the unborn child in the womb. 841. To quote Mulla. 1994) p. 11 | P a g e . This operates only in cases where persons die in circumstances rendering it uncertain as to who died first. Principles of Hindu Law. The section lays down a presumption in case of simultaneous deaths that the younger person survived the older. D. if born alive is treated as actually born for the purpose of conferring on him benefits of inheritance. joint tenancy means joint ownership with the right of survivorship. AIR 2002 Ker.17 Right of Child in Womb.. The view is not peculiar to the ancient Hindu Law but one which as adopted by all mature systems of jurisprudence.”18 But for the purposes of the application of the provisions of section 17 Madambath Rohini v. although subsequently born. On the death of any of them.” A child in the mother’s womb is presumed to be born before the death of the intestate. No one of them is entitled to the exclusive possession of any part of the property. 18 Mulla. each being entitled to whole in common with the others. and the inheritance shall be deemed to vest in such a case with effect from the date of the death of the intestate. until the contrary is proved. The tenancy in common arises where two or more persons are entitled to property in such manner that they have an undivided possession but distinct estate in equal or unequal shares either by the same or different title. Ed. “a child who was in the womb at the time of the death of an intestate and who is subsequently born alive shall have the same right to inherit to the intestate as if he or she had been born before the death of the intestate. Devi. and tenancy-in-common means joint possession with separate ownership without the right of survivorship.

the balance of probabilities was considered to be in the favour of the younger. Lakshmibai. ‘younger’ means younger in status not in age and only when the status is the same. then. it is essential that child must be in womb at the time of the death of the propositus and the child must be born alive. This is a peculiar feature of this Act. AIR 1944 Cal 132. there was no answer to such questions. survived the other. it shall be presumed. 20 Yeknath v. the presumption of survivorship applies. Preferential right to acquire property in certain cases—Section 22. In this Section. younger in age. and if so which. as it was altogether not provided for at all in the classical law or the previous legislations regarding Hindu succession.20 According to this Section. for all purposes affecting succession to property. AIR 1922 Bom 347. Thus if an uncle aged thirty years and a nephew aged thirty five years. it will be presumed that the nephew died later. The burden of proof was on the party who asserted the affirmative. 12 | P a g e . There may be controversy regarding inheritance in such situations as to who will succeed to who’s property.--- 19 Digendra Kumar Roy v. by which the younger is presumed to have survived the older. Presumption in cases of simultaneous death—Section 21. even though he is older in terms of actual age. if two brother die simultaneously in any accident or calamity. until the contrary is proved. 19 If the evidence before the Court was balanced. that the younger survived the elder.” It may happen that two persons die in an accident or calamity under such circumstances that it is impossible to ascertain which of them died first. “Where two persons have died in circumstances rendering it uncertain whether either of them. it may be presumed that both of them died simultaneously or that one of them succeeded the other. Kuti Mian. On the other hand. die in a plane crash or a ship wreck.Before the enactment of this Section.20. the brother younger in age is presumed to have died later. In such a situation.-- Section 21 provides that.

The provisions of the section were necessary in order to safeguard the interests of the co-heirs. an interest in any immovable property of an intestate. and includes any other court which the State Government may. the other heirs shall have a preferential right to acquire the interest proposed to be transferred. (3) If there are two or more heirs specified in class I of the Schedule proposing to acquire any interest under this section. by notification in the Official Gazette. Section 22 runs as follows: (1) Where. Explanation. (2) The consideration for which any interest in the property of the deceased may be transferred under this section shall.In this section. such person shall be liable to pay all costs of or incident to the application. and if any person proposing to acquire the interest is not willing to acquire it for the consideration so determined. otherwise the very foundations of the Hindu family would have been shattered. specify in this behalf. after the commencement of this Act. But the rule of preferential right to acquire property or business in certain cases is subject to certain rules laid down under this section. that heir who offers the highest consideration for the transfer shall be preferred. devolves upon two or more heirs specified in class I of the Schedule. 13 | P a g e . or in any business carried on by him or her.. and any one of such heirs proposes to transfer his or her interest in the property or business. in the absence of any agreement between the parties." court" means the court within the limits of whose jurisdiction the immovable property is situate or the business is carried on.Section 22 provides a preferential right to other heir or heirs to acquire property when one of them desires to transfer his or her interest in the property inherited. be determined by the court on application being made to it in this behalf. Section 22 recognises the rules of pre-emption which has the tendency to raise clogs on the full sale and purchase of property. whether solely or in conjunction with others. The preferential right to acquire property in certain cases as is provided under this section is limited only to those cases where the property has devolved upon two or more heirs specified in class I of the schedule.

23 S Yadav ‘Women. They have the right to claim partition regardless of whether such partition would be disruptive to the female beneficiaries having a share in the dwelling house. 2005. it could be disruptive to the families living in it. Such a right was only available to the male beneficiaries. Section 23 was repealed by the Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act of 2005 and it is nowadays possible for a female to claim partition of the dwelling house. 2008 S. the strangers can be prevented from stepping into the joint business or estate. 1956. if a Hindu widow remarried. certain female heirs if they had remarried after the death of their spouses. before the succession opened were disqualified from inheriting the property of the deceased intestate. for being unfaithful to their obligations widows. they were not allowed to have the house partitioned. 2171.22 By exercising the preferential right to purchase the share of a co-heir in the business or estate. 23 The purpose of section 23 was to protect the rights of the sons of the deceased who act as the providers of the joint family. 1999 P&H 254. 14 | P a g e . Such an argument can equally be applied to the right of the male beneficiaries of the deceased. and who rely on their right to reside with their families in the dwelling house. Section 23 used to limit the right of a female regarding the dwelling house to a right of residence only.The preferential right can be claimed within 1 year of alienation and not after 13 years. she could not inherit the property of her 21 Aushutosh Chaturvedi v. 22 Kamak Goel v. Purshottam Das. Law and Judiciary in India’ in Sharma (ed) Justice and social order in India (1994) 309. Although female beneficiaries became owners of the dwelling house left by the deceased in equal shares with the male beneficiaries. Under the Hindu Widow Remarriage Act. Prano Devi.C. Section 24 repealed: Certain widows remarrying may not inherit as a widow – In classical Hindu law. Section 23 Has Been Deleted From The Act By Virtue Of Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act. 21 The right of co-heir to seek transfer of property proposed to be sold is only a personal right which is neither transferable nor heritable. If a female had the right to claim partition of the dwelling house.

existent. Under this Section of the Act. 97.” Under section 25 the murderer as well as the abettor of murder is disqualified. 15 | P a g e . even in the Dayabhaga school. Furthermore. which is a great diversion from Hindu traditional law. Such provision however. It is a general policy of practically all the systems of law that no one should be allowed to reap the benefits of his crime. Act 39 of 2005. But if he is acquitted on the basis of benefit of doubt. Section 25: Murderer disqualified – A person who commits murder or abets the commission of murder shall be disqualified from inheriting the property of the person murdered. only three female heirs were disqualified on such grounds. 1977 Del.” In the case of Kenchava v. but not provided for in the Mitakshara school. The Joint Select Committee on the Hindu Succession Bill observed: “A murderer even if not disqualified under the traditional Hindu law from succeeding to the estate of the person whom he has murdered is so disqualified upon the principles of justice.deceased husband.25 the Privy Council held that “the murderer is not to be regarded as the stock for a fresh line of descent but should be regarded as non. namely:    Son’s widow Son’s son’s widow Brother’s widow Now. this Section has been omitted 24. Mohanlal. This Section however.26 24 Omiitted by Section 5. equity and good conscience. not the abettor of the murder. or any other property in furtherance of the succession to which he or she committed or abetted the commission of the murder. 25 (1924) 51 IA 368. the disqualification does not attach to him. 26 Chamanlal v. was not specifically provided for in traditional Hindu law. It was a disqualification in the Dayabhaga school. disqualifies both a murderer and an abettor to murder. only the murderer himself was disqualified. Girimallappa. rendering such disqualification null and void.

children born to him or her after such conversion and their descendants shall be disqualified from inheriting the property of any of their Hindu relatives. it shall devolve as if such person had died before the intestate. The property. defect. a disqualified person cannot be a fresh stock of descent and a person claiming as an heir of the disqualified person cannot inherit. although conversion does not disqualify a person form succeeding to the property of an intestate under this Act. 16 | P a g e . and he or she had thereafter immediately died. For. through him or her.26. However. etc. This means that no title or right to succeed can be traced through the disqualified person. 1956. But if at the time of death of the intestate. a Hindu has ceased or ceases to be a Hindu by conversion to another religion. before or after the commencement of this Act. the children of a convert and their descendants are disqualified.28 Section 28 runs: 27 S.Section 26: Convert’s descendants disqualified – “Where. As the disqualified person is deemed to have died before intestate. not to disqualify – Disease.” Under the old Hindu law. it follows that no person can claim a right of inheritance to such property. they are no longer disqualified. never vests in the disqualified person. Therefore.27 Thus. unless such children or descendants are Hindus at the time when the succession opens. Hindu Succession Act. Section 28: Disease. deformity and unchastity are no longer disqualifications. conversion of any Hindu person into another religion was a disqualification which was later removed by the Caste Disabilities Removal Act of 1850 and upheld by this Act. any of them are Hindu. this can only happen if the property had vested in the disqualified person. his descendants are disqualified from inheriting such property unless such children or descendants are Hindus at the time when the succession opens. in fact. Effect of Disqualifications—Section 27-- If any person is disqualified from inheriting any property under this Act.

2595. 2001 Pat. lunacy. on any other ground whatsoever. 422. 1976 S. her second marriage is void and therefore she would not be considered to have remarried.29 If she has remarried during the lifetime of her husband. Madhava. Deputy Div. According to the Dayabhaga law. deformities and unchastity were disqualifications of heirs. though they were not the same in both Dayabhaga and Mitakshara law.“No person shall be disqualified from succeeding to any property on the ground of any disease. any virulent and incurable form of leprosy rendering one unfit for intercourse.e. If she has remarried after divorcing her husband. and therefore has ceased to be his wife so. Commr. 2005 Kant. want of any limb or organ since birth. deafness. Gyanwati Devi.” Under the old Hindu law dome diseases. unchastity of widows and.30 28 Girija Singh v. But the subsequent marriage of the widow is no disqualification. she will not be his widow when propositus dies. According to the Mitakshara law. the disqualifications were: blindness. some disqualifications were: congenial lunacy or idiocy. idiocy. dumbness. 30 Aruna v. 17 | P a g e .. 29 Kasturi Devi v. The widowed mother and widowed stepmother are not disqualified from inheritance even if they have remarried. taking a sanyas) and unchastity of widows. adoption of a religious order (i. or save as provided in this Act.C. defect or deformity. 20.

the disqualifications under the Dayabhaga and the Mitakshara schools were different. several disqualifications were recognized which prevented an heir from inheriting property. but he or she also did not transmit any interest to his or her own heirs. The former contained a longer list. The Hindu Succession Act. Under both the schools. unchastitity was a disqualifications for all women but under Mitakshara law. the mother of the deceased is a Class I heir and the father a Class II heir. only propositus’s own widow was disqualified. The fact that there are two different schemes of succession for males and females may be seen as unequal treatment. Section 23 of the Hindu Succession Act. Before 1956. Some disqualifications were common. Under the pre-1956 Hindu Law of succession. lame or deaf and dumb. which prohibited a female heir to claim partition of the house she inherited. 1956. congenital idiots and lunatics were excluded from inheritance. The result is that the father of the deceased only inherits if there are no Class I heirs. lepers and impotents were also excluded. or persons born blind. Not only the disqualified heir could not take property in inheritance. and its amendments have gone a long way in simplifying the rules regulating succession among the Hindus. was repealed in 2005.CONCLUSION Before 17 June 1956 the classic Hindu law of succession applied to the estates of deceased Hindus. an heir who was criminally responsible for the death of the propositus was disqualified. Major changes to the classic rules have been introduced by means of legislation. has simplified the law and reduced such disqualifications to the barest minimum. insane persons. This may also be seen as discriminatory. Under Mitakshara law. Since then the classic rules have been modified and codified to a large extent. it is not free of discrimination. Under Dayabhaga school. In terms of the schedule to the Act. 1956. Although the Hindu Succession Act. The most important legislation regarding the Hindu law of succession is the Hindu Succession Act that came into operation on 17 June 1956. there are various discrepancies 18 | P a g e . Although the Hindu Succession Act is a clear break with the classic Hindu law of succession. as a disqualified person was treated as having predeceased the propositus. Under Dayabhaga law.

Apart from some discrimination in the Hindu law of succession. There is an urgent need for the proper propagation and popularization of their rights so that they can be exercised effectively. It has been a huge relief for females who were devoid of property rights under the traditional Hindu law. However. It clearly shows that rules of personal law based on religion are not above reform in order to bring them into conformity with social and legal change. the law as it is applied in India today shows a positive reform with regard to the position of females. The women in India are not properly informed of their rights in terms of the Hindu Succession Act. especially for female Hindus. There is scope of change in the amended Act also.still to be solved. it cannot be argued that The Hindu Succession Act has not made any revolutionary change in the law relating to succession. 19 | P a g e .

Nagpur: LexisNexis Butterworths Wadhwa. 2013. 2012. INTERNET SITES  http://www.php http://www. 2012. 2013.Allahabad: Central Law Agency.com/117221/general-rules-of-succession-in-the-case-of-  a-female-hindu-in-the-hindu-succession-act http://www.legalserviceindia.: Handbook on Hindu Succession: Universal Law Publishing.BIBLIOGRAPHY BOOKS     Das.net/indian-law/essays/gender-justice-in-hindu-succession-   laws.mightylaws.ac.shareyouressays. K.jlp. P.bham. Diwan. Agarwala.lawteacher.uk/volumes/50/bates-art. R.in/878/succession-hindu-law-analysis-hindu-succession-act-  1956 http://www.com/articles/gehsa.Family Law II. Professor Kusum: Family Law Lectures.htm http://www.: Hindu Law. Faridabad: Allahabad Law Agency.K.pdf 20 | P a g e . Paras : Family Law.