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VELLIKANNU VS. R. SINGAPERUMAL: A CASE ANALYSIS

By Utkarsh Goel

The case deals with the issue of inheritance rights available with a murdered who was also the heir of the deceased. It was held that if a male Hindu dies after the start of the Hindu Succession Act, 1956, an interest in Mitakshara coparcenary property would flow by survivorship to the remaining members of the coparcenary, rather than in accordance with the Act. As a member of a joint family, the son obtains a vested interest in all coparcenary property through birth or adoption. Coparcenary is owned by the entire group of coparceners. A member of the coparceners’ portion may change from time to time, but his claim to coparcenary property by virtue of survivorship under Mitakshara law is a fixed principle.
The Court ruled against the above-mentioned issues. The murdered shall be considered as non-existent, not as the stock for a new line of descent, as was maintained in Kenchava Kom Sanyellappa Hosmani and Anr. v. Girimallappa Channappa Somasagar (AIR1924 PC 209). The son who has murdered his father is completely disinherited under this concept.
The Case proved to be a landmark judgement and has since been cited numerous times.

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