by Gauri Khera


The Hindu Succession Act came into power on 17th June 1956. It brought radical changes in the law of intestate progression among the Hindus. It was particularly in line with the changed socio-financial scenario of Hindu society. There was a need of improving the heaps of Hindu females through a successful enactment and their privilege of legacy at standard with males was completely perceived. An incredible endeavor has been made to bring a few changes of sweeping results in the arrangement of legacy and progression.

The law identifying with property and its progression required total upgrading especially with regards on ladies' right side to property. Subsequent to going of Hindu Women's Right to Property Act, 1937 the Government had set up Rau Committee to propose changes likewise on this part of law.

The Committee in the wake of considering the current standards of Hindu Succession proposed some progressive changes in the framework so as to evacuate disparities and injustice acts to ladies among Hindus and there was a need suggested for the codification of the law identifying with Succession. It additionally proposed for the codification of Hindu law in successive stages.

Based on the proposals and suggestions of the Rau Committee a few enactments were embraced by the council, the most exceptional of which is Hindu Succession Act, 1956, which speak of the greatest reformative viewpoint of present day Indian Society.


The Hindu Succession Act, 1956 was been passed to address the issues of a dynamic culture. The old law notwithstanding[1] a few developments realized in it by stray enactments and legal choices didn't satisfy the ideal closures and remained barely adequate to a unique Hindu society of contemporary time. Subsequently there was a requirement for a uniform arrangement of law of progression which might be adequate to all section of Hindus and be similarly enforceable upon them.[2]

With this The Hindu Succession Act, 1956 appeared. It evacuates disparities among people regarding rights in property and it sets out a typical rundown of beneficiaries qualified for prevail on intestacy. The Act has been passed to alter and classify the whole law of progression.


(1) The Act sets out a uniform arrangement of legacy similarly appropriate to people administered by the Mitakshara and Dayabhaga schools[3] as additionally those in the Southern India who are represented by the Marumakkattayam, Aliyasanthana and Nambudri frameworks of Hindu law. The Act applies to all Hindus and the term Hindu incorporates Buddhists, Jains and Sikhs.

It has additionally been stretched out even to those people whose guardians are Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and Sikh and who are raised as Hindus as mentioned under Section 2. The Act doesn't have any significant bearing to the property of an individual to whom the arrangements of the Special Marriage Act, 1954 apply as under Section 5.

(2) Section 4 of the Act gives abrogating impact to the arrangement of the Act. It revokes all the standards of the law of progression up to this point appropriate to Hindus, regardless of whether by method of any content, traditions or use, having power of law. Some other law contained in the Central or State enactment will stop to have impact to the extent that it is conflicting with any of the arrangements contained in the Act.

(3) The Act has cancelled impartible home and the uncommon method of its progression.

(4) The Act has widely influenced the whole idea of Mitakshara coparcenary[4] which was represented by the standard of survivorship. In this plan female beneficiaries didn't have wherever and the property lapsed uniquely on the male beneficiaries of the coparcenary on the demise of a male part under the Act. The standard of survivorship has a constrained application. It would apply just in those situations where a male part on his demise left coparceners as it were.

In the event that such male individual from a Mitakshara coparcenary kicks the bucket intestate abandoning a female beneficiary referenced in Class I of the Schedule, the property of the expired would decay not as indicated by the standard of survivorship however as per the arrangements of this Act, which accommodates a particular offer to such female beneficiary.


The request for progression given by the Act is extensively founded on the tenet of propinquity or proximity of blood and in like manner prong beneficiaries are partitioned into four classes rather than three, which are as per the following:[5]

(i) Heirs in class I of the Schedule

(ii) Heirs in class II of the Schedule

(iii) Agnates[6]

(iv) Cognates[7]

The property regresses right off the bat upon the twelve particular beneficiaries referenced in class I of the Schedule to the Act and flopping such beneficiaries upon the second, third and fourth class of beneficiaries in a specific order as set down in Section 8 and 9. The extraordinary component of the above division is that the beneficiaries in class I of the Schedule acquire the property at the same time and as per the convention of portrayal if there arises any occurrence of predeceased children or little girl.

Another significant highlight is that class I of the Schedule contained that a rundown of twelve beneficiaries out of which eight are females and four are guys of which one male case through a female. Every one of them acquire in equivalent offers. All the beneficiaries in class II don't succeed at the same time yet the beneficiaries set in one Entry would be qualified for acquire at the same time. On account of third and fourth classifications of beneficiaries, i.e., agnates and cognates, the standards of inclination have been embraced so as to decide the need.

The Act has cancelled Hindu women restricted domain and made her outright proprietor of the property regardless of its wellspring of procurement. Any property obtained by a Hindu female in any legal way at all and controlled by her turned into her outright property and she appreciates total capacity to discard it in a manner she wants as mentioned under section 14 of Hindu Succession Act, 1956. [8]

The Act has likewise furnished uniform request of progression concerning property of female Hindu.

On her withering intestate her property will decline on her childs and spouse and from that point upon her folks and the beneficiaries of guardians. Without any issues to her, the property acquired from her folks would return to the beneficiaries of parent as opposed to regressing upon the spouse or beneficiaries of husband.

The privilege of child in belly at the intestate's demise and along these lines brought into the world alive will relate back to the date of intestate's passing as mentioned under Section 20 of the act.

The Act sets out some broad principles of progression bury alia such that beneficiaries identified with a male or female intestate by full blood are to be liked to those related significantly blood if the idea of relationship is the equivalent in each other regard (Section 18). Another standard is that if at least two beneficiaries prevail to the property of an intestate, they will take their offer per capita and not per stripes. Such beneficiaries accept the property as occupants’ in like manner and not as joint inhabitants as mentioned under section 19.

The Act has altogether amended the law identifying with prohibition from legacy. Section 28 disposes of the considerable number of grounds of avoidance dependent on physical imperfections, distortion or illness. The exclusions are limited to the instance of remarriage of a widow of a predeceased child, widow of a predeceased child of predeceased child and widow of the sibling.

Another preclusion expressed in the Act identifies with a killer who is prohibited on the standards of equity and value. Change is not, at this point a ground to prohibit an individual from acquiring the property however believer’s relatives have been excluded from acquiring the property of their Hindu family members.

The privilege of ill-legitimate child to acquire the property of their mom has been protected however such child are excluded to prevail to their dad's property.[9]


All in all the act has made a female stand equal to that of a male in the family. She shares the same responsibilities same as her brother she has equal share in the property. The act has empowered the women in many ways.

The recent judgement that is passed a couple of days before mentions, that all the females have equal right in the property even if the partition was before 2005. This is a great win for all the females.

[1] Notwithstanding- in spite of. [2] https://lawaspect.com/indian-succession-act/ [3] The Dayabhaga and The Mitakshara are the two schools of law that govern the law of succession of the Hindu Undivided Family under Indian Law. The Dayabhaga School of law is observed in Bengal and Assam. The Mitakshara School of law is subdivided into the Benares, the Mithila, the Maharashtra and the Dravida schools. [4] Coparcenary- term used for a person assumes a legal right in his ancestral property by birth. [5] "HINDU SUCCESSION ACT, 1956" (PDF). [6] Agnates- a person descended from the same male ancestor as another specified or implied person, especially through the male line. [7] Cognates- a blood relative, especially on the mother's side