Rights of female descendants to property

My grand parents who had expired recently held an ancestral property in the district of West Godavari district Andhra Pradesh. They had 4 sons and 5 daughters (2 of them married after 1957) . Now, these 4 sons together conspired to usurp the property without daughter's consent. They had been threatening their sisters to sign on the white and registration papers. They were even successful to force the youngest daughter to sign against her wish. Now, they are planning on visiting registrar office to register the property as well. The daughters had telephoned the registrar and informed him of their situation and their inability to visit the locality. But the registrar mentioned he couldn't hold the registration and will continue providing documents to the 4 sons. please advise on following questions on this premise. Questions: 1) What should the female descendants do at this juncture? 2) Why can't the registrar halt/terminate the registration? 3) will the property become their's if they register it? if no, how long the daughter's have to reverse the registration through court? if yes, Is this lawful and legal on the son's part to do so? Please advise your suggestions Thanks

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Since your grandparents had expired recently, the Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act 2005 will be applicable to their ancestral property and their daughters will have a coparcenary right in the property as well.[1]

If the 4 brothers have been threatening the 5 sisters to sign registration papers and certain other blank documents, an FIR can be filed against them under Sections 503 and 506 of the Indian Penal Code 1860.[2] Two points need to be considered over here-

  1. Since this is an ancestral property, all the daughters have a coparcenary right in it. Thus, signature of just one of the daughters does not take away the rights of all of them, and
  2. Since the signature was taken under coercion, the consent of the youngest daughter will become invalid, per se.[3]

If one of the sisters was forced to sign certain papers against her wish, normally, the first step would have been to inform the Registrar of this situation and request him not to proceed with the procedure. Since the Registrar in your case is non-cooperative, the best you can do is file a civil suit against the brothers.[4] Moreover, it is the duty of the Registrar to ensure that the persons appearing for the registration of any document (including registration of property) are the ones entitled to do it.[5] The brothers, not being the only stake holders and not having the lawful consent of the sisters, cannot register this property in their name; it would be illegal. The Registrar has every power to deny registration under the State rules if he sees any irregularity in the procedure or on the part of the executors.[6] The law is not clear about the default on the part of the registrar, however, in my opinion, it can be one of the issues in the civil suit against the brothers.

As far as the time required for the reversal of the registration is concerned, it really depends upon the adequacy and gravity of your case in the Court. I do not mean to discourage you but property disputes can take anything from months to years. However, this should not stop you from seeking what is rightfully yours. If you are the son of one of the daughters and an adult (18 years of age and above), it is legal for you to institute the suit on behalf of your mother and aunts.



[1] Section 5 of the Act

[2] The two sections pertain to criminal intimidation and its punishment under the Code

[3] Section 15 of the Indian Contract Act, 1872

[4] Vide Section 16 of the Code of Civil Procedure

[5] Section 26 of the Andhra Pradesh Rules under the Registration Act, 1908 and Sections 32 and 40 of the Indian Registration Act, 1908

[6] Chapter XXIV of the Andhra Pradesh Rules under the Registration Act, 1908


Answered on October 24, 2016.
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