Thursday, December 16, 2004


Equal Footing

That this bill is even being proposed in India is a very good sign:

NEW DELHI, DECEMBER 15: In a major blow to patriarchy among Hindus, the Union Cabinet today cleared a legislative proposal to introduce equality between men and women in their rights over joint family property.

Amending the Hindu Succession Act 1956, the proposed Bill gives the daughter entry for the first time into the “coparcenary” of her family—which means she will be counted among those members who are entitled to seek partition and get equal shares in the ancestral property. The Bill states that in a joint Hindu family, the daughter of a coparcener shall “by birth become a coparcener” and have “the same rights in the coparcenary property as she would have had if she had been a son.”

As a corollary, the daughter will be bound by the common liabilities and can even become the “karta” (or loosely the head) of the joint family.
Past marriages will not be affected. It looks like they're being grandfathered in under the old rules, presumably because that's what it takes to change the future.