• Widow has complete right over husband’s property bought for her

    March 06, 2017

    A Delhi court in its recent judgement has held that a widow has a right to enjoy the property purchased by her husband in her name in whatever manner she wants and her daughter and son-in-law cannot lay claim over it.

    This judgment came after a 65-year-old woman moved to the court against her daughter and son-in-law’s refusal to vacate a portion of the house and challenging the right of the elderly over the property in northwest Delhi’s Shastri Nagar.

    The aggrieved, Lajwanti Devi, wanted the portion of the property given to her daughter and son-in-law in 1985 for their personal use but they refused to vacate.

    The court, which perused the facts of the case, expressed anguish that the widow who had allowed the couple to use the premises due to the close relationship, was compelled to rush to the court after they declined to vacate it.

    The judge while holding the woman as the owner of the house, noted that the property was purchased by the woman’s husband in 1966 in his wife’s name to “provide her a secure life” after his death and her daughter and son-in-law were only having “permissive possession” of the house and they could not be allowed to defeat her right.

    “Lajwanti Devi, a Hindu widow, has a right to enjoy the property purchased by her husband in her name, in the manner she wants...,” the court said, directing the couple to vacate the house within six months and pay damages to her.

    The couple was asked to pay Rs 10,000 per month to the aged woman from the time of institution of the suit in 2014 and Rs 10,000 per month from the date of the judgement till the handing over of the possession of the property to her along with interest.

    The couple contended in the court that the woman had no right over the property as it was solely purchased by her husband and thus, she had no right to file the suit.


    The judgment of the HC clears the air about a long standing legal issue with regard to widow’s right over husband’s property that was bought in her name. There have been various cases in the past where close relatives try to take undue advantage and adversely possess property of old and dependent people, who because of their infirmities are usually unable to fight for their rights. This judgement shall surely act as a valuable precedent in future matters of similar nature.

Latest News