Alias Mewajannessa Vs. Shaikh Mohamad Alias & Ors  INSC 140 (21 February 1995)
K. Ramaswamy, K. Hansaria B.L. (J)
1996 AIR 702 1995 SCC Supl. (2) 529 JT 1995 (2) 652 1995 SCALE (2)243
This appeal by special leave arises from the judgment of the Division Bench of
the Calcutta High Court in appeal from original decree No.652/61 and cross
objections dated June
8, 1973. This Court
while granting leave limited the appeal to the questions raised in ground Nos.II
and VI dealing with inheritance of property belonging to Sabul, Liaquat and Mahujammusa.
Therefore, untrammeled by the controversy which hinged in the trial court and
the High Court, we confined our consideration only to these two questions.
This appeal arises out of a partition suit. The genealogy table before us has
not been disputed. It would show that Haji Ishan Ali died in 1955 leaving
behind his widow Samudanusa, plaintiff No.1 (P-1), who also died pending suit
in 1966; his two daughters, plaintiff No.2 (P- 2) Bibi Mewannesa and Bibi Mahujammusa,
defendant No.5 (D-5) and three sons Jabar Ali, Isabul Ali and Sabul Hassan.
Ali left behind defendant No.1 (D-1), a son and defendant No.2 (D-2), a
daughter. Isabul Ali left behind him defendant No.3 (D-3), a daughter. D-3 was
married to D- 1. Sabul Hassan pre-deceased Isabul Ali, leaving behind defendant
No.4 (D-4). a son and Liaquat also a son, who too died 653 before the death of Isabul
Ali. The trial court granted preliminary decree which was affirmed in appeal.
The shares and extent are in controversy. The High Court found that the
property purchased by Haji Ishan Ali in the name of his son Sabul Hassan belong
to the latter alone. Since Sabul Hassan had pre-deceased-Isabul Ali, the
question arose whether Haji Ishan Ali was a sharer in the estate of Sabul Hassan.
Section 61 in Chapter VII of the Mulla's Principles of Mohammedan Law, edited
by M. Hidayatullah, former Chief Justice of this Court, postulates three
classes of heirs, namely,
are those who are entitled to a prescribed share in inheritance, residuaries
are those who take no prescribed share, but succeed to the 'residue' after the
claims of the sharers are satisfied; and distant kindred are all those
relations by blood who are neither sharers nor residuaries. The Table at page
72-A of the 18th Edition prescribes that a father who is under Item No. 1, gets
1/6th share, where there is child or children of a son; and when there is no
child or children of a son, the father inherits as residuary. Since Sabul Hassan
left behind D-4 son, Isabul Ali got 1/6th share. Out of this 1/6th share got
from the estate of Sabul Hassan, his widow (P1) and P-2 the daughter would get
equal respective share under law, which would be determined by the Trial Court.
next question is whether P-2 is entitled to a share in the estate of Bibi Mahujammusa,
D-5, who died pending suit. Section 65 dealing with residuaries, read with the
Table at page 72A, indicates that if there are no sharers, or if there sharers
but there is residue left after satis- fying their claim, residuaries also
inherit in the order set forth in the Table. D-5 left behind two daughters and
as per the sharers two daughters are, entitled to 1/3rd share each i.e. 2/3rd
share. In other words, 1/3rd remained as residue. Table at page 72A dealing
with residuaries indicates that where descendants like son, son's son, and
ascendants like father and grand father arc not available, then the descendants
of the. father takes in the order mentioned. The first is full brother. then
sister; in default, a daughter or son's daughter or daughter's son. In this
case since only two daughters were left behind by D-5, the full sister, namely
P-2, takes the entire residue, which is 1/3rd share.
is next contended that since D-1 died in March 1990, steps were not taken to
bring the legal representatives on record until 27th January, 1995 despite notice given to the appellant by a letter dated November 14, 1990 and no proper explanation has been
given for the inordinate delay.
the appeal as a whole should be dismissed as having been abated. We, find no
force in the Contention.
the third defendant is already on representing all the heirs of the first
defendant widow, the question of abatement does not arise. Even otherwise we
find that substitution should be allowed, since no injustice would be done in
bring the legal representatives on record. Thus the objection is over-ruled.
The application for substitution is allowed.
appeal is accordingly allowed. The matter is remitted to the Trial Court for
determining the shares of all the contesting parties and for distribution of
the estate in proportion to shares. This would be done according to the law
declared hereinbefore. No costs.