A widow has a right to enjoy the property purchased by her husband in her name, in the manner she wants and her daughter and son-in-law cannot lay claim over it, a Delhi court has held. The observation was made, while deciding the case in favour of a 65-year-old woman, who had moved 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 north-west Delhi’s Shastri Nagar.
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. Additional District Judge Kamini Lau, 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.
It asked them 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 claimed in the court that the woman has no right over the property, as it was solely purchased by her husband and as she was not the owner of the house, she had no right to file the suit.