Daughters born before 2005 have rights to the ancestral property. A Supreme Court bench of Justices A K Sikri and Ashok Bhushan have said that the Hindu Succession Act in 2005 made it clear that the law applied to all women born before the year.
They have said that a daughter would be a coparcener. She will be one who shares equally in an inheritance of an undivided property) since birth, and have the same rights and liabilities as a son. The law applies to all property disputes filed before 2005 when the law was framed.
“The law relating to a joint Hindu family governed by the Mitakshara law and has undergone unprecedented changes. The said changes have been brought forward to address the growing need to merit equal treatment to the nearest female relatives, namely daughters,” the bench said.
…This amendment now confers upon the daughter of the coparcener as well the status of coparcener in her own right in the same manner as the son and gives same rights and liabilities in the coparcener properties…,” the bench said.
“These changes have been sought… on the touchstone of equality, thus seeking to remove the perceived disability and prejudice to which a daughter was subjected,” said the judges.
The judgement came after two sisters wanted a share in their father’s property. Their brothers had refused them their share and they filed a case in 2002. The High Court had dismissed their case because they were born before 2005. Now the SC has set aside the HC order.
Hindu Succession Act:
The Hindu Succession Act, 1956, originally did not give daughters inheritance rights in the ancestral property. They could only ask for a right to sustenance from a joint Hindu family. If a partition took place in the coparcenary (joint family) property, then each male coparcener was entitled to a share, and the daughter did not get a share. The daughter could only get a share as one of the heirs on the death of coparcener.