Her Marital Home: His Inherited Property

22 Jul

Her Marital Home: His Inherited Property


Whenever there is a mention of women’s rights and any proposal of legal protection for women especially desi women everyone becomes an expert and filth starts flying from all directions thanks to internet and its anonymity. It is a sad story just like the anti stalking bill in the parliament few months ago where democratically elected lampoons were jumping up and down to the extent that one even went ahead and said, “who amongst us hasn’t chased women? We are men that is what we do?” With such a sense of entitlement it is hard to expect any good coming by for women.

Last evening, IHM sent DG one line email asking what are DG’s views regarding the wife being given a share from the house a couple was living in, even if it is inherited or inheritable (like in Joint Families I suppose). She was referring to her latest post about the new bill in the parliament. We have done this in the past in-boxing co-bloggers to clarify concepts and issues. What DG wrote back IHM suggested she post here for everyone to read, hence this post. Along with that response DG has also included few comments she had made at IHM’s current post.

DG has spent most of her activist life working in the grassroots working with women and children  experiencing domestic abuse while she was still in des and then abroad. The organization she is affiliated with has actively contributed to drafting of this bill over the decades. In future posts DG will post few examples both from her personal and professional experience how the concept of marital home actually works in real life, here she’ll stick to technical stuff related to marital home and inherited property of the male spouse.

Colonial roots of current problems

Going back to 1858 when India came under the rule of crown and the white man’s burden set out on the project of taming the native male beast who brutalized native women, rather emasculating the native male for crown deemed it incapable of taking care of their own women. The native male elite in order to resist this emasculation gloated in the distant past that he called “golden age of ancient India.” It was like a blind man searching for a black cat in a dark room that never was there. Coming back to the topic, the natives did not have a singular rule of inheritance though they were patriarchal like the colonizer but they had too many customary laws governing the actual practice of property succession depending on the locale and community. For the purposes of uniform administration and tax collection colonizer selectively chose areas of reform, land restructuring and reform being the primary then selectively leaving the family laws for native elite to feel in control. New land revenue systems included landlord systems, individual cultivator-based systems, and village-based systems the latter two allowed individuals and families to maintain the de facto structure of property rights that previously existed; patriarchal and male coparcener neither benefiting nor disinheriting women all together.

The Indian Succession Act of 1925 did not include Hindus who were majority and were governed under the Mitakshara system of succession. The Hindu Women’s Rights to Property Act, 1937 for the first time made a Hindu widow a party (possession not ownership as coparcener) to deceased husband’s estate along with her son (coparcener) not daughter. It was only in 1956 with the advent of Hindu Succession Act 1956 that women’s right to property is spoken of. In their over zealousness the law makers actually harmed the interests of women by tweaking the Mitakshara succession system. By definition:

1. coparcenary (unity of ownership) is the essence of this system.

2. son was a coparcener by virtue of birth in the joint family property, as an adult he could demand partition of this property during the life time of his father.

3. son could prevent (both in action and word) his father from unauthorised alienation of ancestral property.

4. a coparcener has no right to alienate his undivided share in the joint family property. On his death without male offspring, his share goes to his brother.

5. The widow of deceased coparcener has a right to maintenance but she cannot enforce partition.

With Hindu Succession Act 1956, Section 6, a daughter was added as an coparcener but mother, wife and widow were left out. The father could dispose his share in undivided joint family property and could alienate another coparcener both son and daughter by making a will, this also applied to residence as question of agricultural property for women was never asked. In Mitakshara system if daughters had no coparcenary rights at least they still could reside under their father’s roof and a father could not throw away a son who refused to tow the line be it disagreeing to an arranged marriage or marrying outside the caste. When one law gives women access to something the other competes to disempower them at the same time. Not many fathers treated daughters as coparceners but many chose to will them out of natal family’s residential property. It is this statute men on electronic media are making much hue and cry about that women as daughters should ask for their share from fathers and not claim a share in husband’s inherited property. There is yet no law that makes wife a coparcener in her husband’s undivided joint family property. It is a long road ahead.

It is Hindu Succession (Amendment) Act 2005(HSAA) which deleted the gender discriminatory clause on agricultural land for just Hindu women not all Indian women. The Punjab Haryana examples given about women denouncing their right to father’s property in favor of their brothers actually never existed until HSAA 2005. Married daughters were just making a promissory note that they’ll not file a suit as a coparcener to the natal home, thus only an unmarried daughter had a right to remain in her father’s home but not own it.

English Marriage vs Desi Marriage

Now coming back to the primary question what happens to the roof over woman’s head if she lived her marital life in her husband’s undivided joint family. It is not surprising if the legal meaning of marriage differed in England and India in colonial times it continues even today. The British, once married  the couple is considered as a single legal independent unit that set up a household together and neither their parents nor their children had any control over the assets they acquired together. Whereas, in India the new bride “joined” man’s family in his natal home where people of two or more generations in vertical (by blood) and horizontal (by marriage) hierarchy lived together under one roof and only coparceners had the right to residential property during the life time of the primary coparcener (husband). Now from this understanding we can draw number of hypothetical scenarios that are generating so much paranoia in Indian men about their emasculation by Indian legal system and women.

Breaking up while under the joint roof

In case of marital discord women have been thrown out of joint families in the middle of night and when they ask for spousal or child support men wash their hands of the responsibility by saying the house belonged to the family and he like her was just living there thus has nothing to give her. If she insists the man seek his coparcenary rights and take his share of property and then give her what is rightfully her due be it a room or an amount that would be half of what his share amounted to. The “karta” the head of the family, father of the man can immediately alienate/disinherit the man from his coparcener rights thanks to HSA 1956  in order to prevent the daughter-in-law from begetting anything. It is more complex than it is visible to our eyes. It is basically about primary residence of the married couple during the entire duration of the marital union no matter where it is, in the extended family or ancestral house they live in and other family members may be living abroad.
The share will be calculated according to the duration of marriage and it will be subtracted from  what ever is man’s share with respect to other share holders in the joint family so that woman can have a roof over her head or be provided with money so that she can buy a place or pay the deposit for a rented home (deposit often runs in lakhs). A woman who was married for three years cannot have same percentage of share as the one who was married for twenty years. Use some common sense.

What about other women under the joint roof

Some people are worried about the other women living under the same roof who will be rendered roofless in compensating one woman. There are ways to work this out the one who is leaving the joint household need not be paid lump sum at one time she can be provided with easy monthly payments that will give her rent money and living expenses. It is not a rocket science.

Joint Family Business

There is a big section of middle class men that works in family owned businesses and no one knows who is earning what. It is here the court has to decide what the primary earner (usually man) earned during the life time of marriage so that wife can be compensated and child care can be assured.

At the name of woman walking out of a bad marriage man’s family immediately declare him absconding or lampoon who doesn’t contribute an iota to family business whom they have disinherited quite some time ago. Thus woman is rendered penniless and roofless in a minute.

For example: For example: If Sr. Ambani was still alive and one of the brothers were to seek divorce even though they lived in separate homes but still earned from the family business. The man’s share can be calculated from the day he got married divided by three (if only father and 2 sons were working together, but it is here the problem arises coz’ they have Sons-in-law working for them too) so it will be divided by joint business owners and then divided by 50% between man and the woman for the duration they were married.

Same way if the woman is married to a marginal farmer (someone with a very small holding but is also a peasant in other people’s fields to make ends meet), it will be what they made together, even if it is a hutment and little earning they brought from that one field.

The minute you talk about giving something to the woman the number of shareholders go up and her share is reduced to nothing or families go ahead and declare their son or brother is not contributing to the business or has cheated or is alcoholic or lampoon. Hamare kahane mein nahin hai…

A woman asked:

Ansestral property is handed down thru family and why would I split that??

And DG’s answer is:

for exactly the same reasons you’ll uproot a woman from her natal home and force her live in an almost stranger’s home with his natal family.
This is exactly the reason used for centuries why would you split ancestral property by giving a share to female child who is going to leave at marriage (paraya dhan).

The idea of community property/joint property, the property and assets acquired by the couple during the entire duration of the marital union is pretty alien to Indians given the free ride men have in patriarchy. In rural Rajasthan there is a saying, the children belong to man and his family for the woman did not bring them from her natal home, like wise she can leave with what he brought with her. If a woman stays home and does the status production work (making it possible for man to work outside home while she makes sure he has clean clothes for work and his guests are taken care of when they visit and so on…) along with care giving and upbringing of children according to the caste and class position etiquette. Even if she was working outside home for income why should there be any doubt about dividing the assets and the savings they acquired  together during the total duration of this playing house?

Another smart elk asked:

also if the mans a liability in terms of financial loans acquired before and after marriage, will the wife gets a 50% share of that too on divorce.why not ??

Yes, woman and her children suffer more than the idiot who gambles away family assets and his earnings. When you talk about equal division of joint marital property losses are included by default for the duration of marital union not for what debt one acquired before marriage, be it for building his parents a house or paying for his sister’s dowry or capital fee for his brother’s admission.
Same way a woman may bring her student loans into marriage she is responsible for them not him. It is student loans that become a bone of contention with man and his family coz’ they expect her parents to pay for it and she should just hand over her salary to them as is spend it in the marital home. As more women are marrying late and are also marrying for second time they are going to bring assets into marriage, some will bring student loans too. What man or woman brings into the marriage; assets and income they had acquired before they got married remains their sole property, they can choose to keep it as it is or dissolve it according to their volition the spouse or kin should have no covert or overt right to it.

There is another bunch of monkeys jumping up and down screaming women will marry only for man’s property and in one night/month of marriage they’ll file for no fault divorce and beget 50% of his property that his forefathers worked hard to beget. They forget it takes minute to wed in India and it takes years to dissolve that marriage. No person can file for divorce prior to 365 days from the day of solemnization of a wedding no matter what the reason is, one has to be married for a year before they can file for divorce. In the case of no fault the stipulated period is three years.

In a country where registration of marriage is still an alien concept and only 3% pay taxes because they don’t have many options of not paying to imagine a bitter spouse will let a woman rest her hands on anything extra is sheer paranoia than realistic fear.

If anyone wants to make any corrections in the HSA 1956, HSAA 2005 please feel free DG has tried to put it in very simple words, it’s almost 3am DG has to sleep.

Good Night.

21 Responses to “Her Marital Home: His Inherited Property”

  1. Ash September 28, 2013 at p09 #

    Our views about others tell more about our mental makeup than about others.


    welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Yes, definitely our views about others (not just other but even about issues that affect humanity) tell more about our mental makeup than others. Like victim blaming tells us how humane we are, stereotyping shows how blind we are to discrimination.

    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
    Desi Girl


  2. In a nutshell August 19, 2013 at p08 #

    Dear DG, is there any way to contact you on email? You will probably get my mail ID through this comment. Kindly reply. I need to ask you your permission. Thanks!
    I loved your blog, btw!

    @In a nutshell,
    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Glad, you like GGTS. Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
    Desi Girl


  3. anotherindiangirl July 28, 2013 at p07 #

    Hi DG,

    I have been following your blog for some time now.
    This is a great article. Though people say that there are laws regarding women which can help them and thus women should not cry foul, the reality is very different.
    As always, its easy to preach. If staying in a joint family was an option or a decision you could easily make, things would have been so much better. And this is just one of the many issues.

    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
    Desi Girl


  4. anotherindiangirl July 28, 2013 at p07 #

    Hi DG,

    I have been following your blog for some time now.
    This is a great article. Though people say that there are laws regarding women which can help them and thus women should not cry foul, the reality is very different.
    As always, its easy to preach. If staying in a joint family was an option or a decision you could make that easily, things would have been so much better. and this is just one of the many issues.


    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
    Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
    Desi Girl


  5. Gautam July 26, 2013 at p07 #

    To say that all evil befell on Indian women with the so called Muslim invasion, it is the reclamation tale of nationalist cultural elite who wanted to gloat in the glory of golden age of ancient India…………….

    Just like the ‘secular’ historians and politicians of modern India who deleted chapters from the Indian history textbooks like infamous Portuguese Inquisition of Goa so to play popular vote bank politics.

    Several hundreds of Hindus were peresecuted during the murderous Christian Portuguese occupation of Goa in the last millenium but it never found mention in the school textbooks for these greedy politicians and secular historians wanted to propagate a popular myth that Christian missionaries were and remain a benign lot who can’t hurt anyone.

    That’s one history chapter you should read.

    I would have gladly responded to your comment at your ‘friend’ ih..’s blog; however it seems that she has a problem with accepting disagreement/diversity of opinion and hence several of my comments weren’t allowed to stay/appear though they were quite polite in contrast to ones made over here in response to your shockingly outrageous digs & barbs at men which appeared to jump out of the blogpage.


  6. Pranesh July 25, 2013 at p07 #

    I think this is a very well researched and documented write up. In my opinion it holds meaning to see that the man and the woman become equals in all aspects of life. If a woman lives with a man she has a right to all that he has and similarly the man has a right to what the woman has. This is an ideal life spent together in a husband wife relationship.
    Abuse, Physical or mental has no place in a relationship. And if it happens it mostly happens with a male abusing the female generally more.
    What ever a man builds in terms of wealth during the course of being in a marital relationship is decidedly built only because the wife has participated in one way or the other in building the wealth. At no stage should it be believed that it was the solitary effort of the man only, because it can not be. May be the woman’s participation is a case of disguised labour (A fine example being the agri based labour in India where the contribution of the woman and a person with disability is not taken in to account as it is a case of disguised labour.) but she constructively contributes to creation of wealth in the family. And thus at every stage of division by any chance she has a right to claim an equal share.
    DG your write up is well understood, and nothing in it is abusive or vulgar or any thing of that nature. Truth must prevail.


    Thank you for comment that further expounds the current post. Your comment is very encourage in the wake of comments and accusations made by young men against DG and GGTS.
    Your support is appreciated.
    Desi Girl


  7. Clueless July 24, 2013 at p07 #

    My only question regarding all of this is – how can we ever hope to achieve equality between the sexes if there are laws made specifically for one gender? Yes, men enjoyed a privileged status for centuries. But thats not the fault of my son who is being raised responsibly. He should not have to bear the burden on this ancestors’ mistakes.

    Take the stalking law for example. It does not have to be “man following woman”, but the law can be for stalker of any gender stalking someone of any gender. This will then ofcourse cover man stalking woman, but it will also cover man stalking man, woman stalking man and woman stalking woman.

    Similarly for sharing inheritance during divorce, the law can be gender neutral. However small the percentage, there can be men who have been victims of abuse in a marriage and they need protection too. And it will not stop the women – who form a big percentage of the victims from seeking legal redress.

    Also, while joint families are inherently unfair to women, we have to realize that women have the choice of saying no to joint families. They may not have a voice to make that choice because of abuse, social pressure and those are the problems we need to address. We cannot say “she is suffering in joint family so she must get special treatment” because then we stop seeing them as adults capable of choosing.

    Women are people too and equally capable of making mistakes. We cannot have laws protecting them from bad personal decisions like living with the ILs in a joint family after marriage. Ofcourse I am in no way discounting abuse and harassment – that is illegal no matter what.


  8. Gautam July 24, 2013 at p07 #




    ————————– END OF NOTICE————————————————————-

    Thank you for best ever complement. So young men are brainless creatures who can be influenced by a faceless stranger who doesn’t even have an ad agency.


    • sexyindian July 24, 2013 at p07 #

      gautam : you are such a drama junkie ..
      DG : when people come and spit venom on ur post , I have to congratulate you , you managed to rub salt on hurted egos . Kudos .

      I so love how you dig the root of issue because superflous views never help you understand the situation and till we understand the situation we cannot work towards making it better . As I always say ” Men have controlled women’s money and sexual rights ” and they are never going to be happy when women reclaim them .
      Its ok for brothers to kill each other for property and even thrown them out of out of house . we will find excuses to validate their stance but when we have women asking for any property rights , everyone will pounce on them .

      Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
      Thank you for the complement.
      Now please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
      Desi Girl


  9. Ekalavya July 22, 2013 at p07 #

    This comment is for you, I wrote in IHM blog. She took long time to publish it so you may be missed it..
    Why a man and his family need to adjust to a woman who is not known to them. and why they have to adjust to her or support her. Why they have to give shelter to unknown girl after marriage? Why they need to add a girl came form somewhere into their circle? For this reason may be they need not to share the ancestral property. may be the girl need to give something to man’s family. Isn’t it? What I want to emphasize here is .. “The door swings in both ways”. Both are doing their own adjustments. Then why to treat women as victim here? Women is not doing any sacrifies by marrying a man. This kind of “Women are victim” attitude is the reason for these kind of biased laws. Women must stop treating themselves as victims when they are not.

    And I too like to see the face of those women who suppor these kind of unfair laws, when their brothers and sons are hit by a woman who just came into the so-called matrimonial home just one or two months back and applied for no-fault divorce and take the 50% share from her husband and 50% share of man’s share in the joint matrimonial home. They can’t divide the house, so they have to pay the money, they never have that much money as cash, because it goes to multiple lacks may be two digits sometime, so they have to barrow money and has to pay the interest every month which is a large share of their monthly income. Women too have opposite sex relatives, and women too have faces.

    In the first place, if a girl get share in husband’s earnings (leave the ancestral property) and have exclusive rights on her ancestral property is a crime against natural justice. Because, man is losing his property and women gaining it.

    Women must get their ancestral property. So, it can be useful to her in future. If man uses that property, he has to pay back it with interest. Then there is will be no financial hardship for women. There is no need of sharing husband’s hard earned money after divorce, After which she is not going to contribute to him in any way. If the property she gets from her parents is not enough then she can ask for maintenance under the existing maintenance laws. No one saying that women need to go out without any support.


  10. Ekalavya July 22, 2013 at p07 #

    Thanks you write this article in your blog with more abusive words and slangs. Anyway, I wanted to give some response to you in IHM’s post, since she taking long time to publish them , it is better if we two have some argument. (I can understand her. May be it is dfficult for her to read all comments, verify and publish because number of comments she get there are reaching or crossing hundred.). If you really feel any comment that comes against your Ideology is not a threat publish this or just run away from it.
    Why on the earth a man has to share his ancestral property and property acquired befor marriage?

    some famous reasons by women:
    1. only man inherit property from his parents.
    Ans: So, what? why do we allow a woman to rob him? If the inheritance is the problem go and have a law for it. Govt is making rediculous laws like IrBM, why can’t they make some sensible law which allows every woman to get share in her ancestral property. If she get her share in ancestral property, then there will be no problems like financial hardship for women. why punish the wrong guy, let woman send her idiotic/ beast father and brother to jail for not sharing property with her. Why husband?

    2. Women leave their natal family and enter into strangers home .. blah blah..blah.
    Ans: Oh, really? then what about man who is accepting a strange girl into his home? why on the hell a man has to do that? isn’t it a man doing some sacrifies for that? The door swings in both ways, even if some radicals feminists/ communists accept it or not. Any sane person will simply recognize this.

    3. They forget it takes minute to wed in India and it takes years to dissolve that marriage. No person can file for divorce prior to 365 days from the day of solemnization of a wedding no matter what the reason is, one has to be married for a year before they can file for divorce. In the case of no fault the stipulated period is three years.

    Ans: That’s just Ignorant. Women simply file false 498A and false DV Act and simply ask divorce because they can’t stay with violent partner. This happened with many cases.

    Seema parted ways with Parin after 12 days of their marriage. This took place at Ahmedabad airport after they returned from their honeymoon in Malaysia.
    Rs40thousand per month: Woman gets whopping alimony

    Where you want to put your theory of 365 days for divorce, now? and you call those men who told this point as monkeys, isn’t it? now tell me who are monkeys? If you don’t know, it doesn’t matter, many people don’t know many things. But don’t insult others.

    Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.

    DG has devoted numerous posts on why one gets married for what outcomes so she’ll not indulge in this discussion here, she has done that enough on IHM’s blog. PERIOD.
    Now about 365days before you can file the divorce, you can file any kind of civil or criminal suit at any time of the marriage be it day one or twelve but divorce can only be filed after 365days since the date of wedding. Please pick up the case law files and verify.

    Yes, man accepts the strange woman into his home for that reason only she brought dowry for her upkeep, and the subsequent gifts from her natal family for her entire life.

    You and many others are screaming women should fight their brothers and fathers for not giving them access to ancestral property good enough, the men who are denying property rights to their sisters and daughters are the same men who expect their wives to bring home property from her parents. These are the same men who cry wolf and show chivalry at the same time. These are the same men who encourage dowry and female feoticide in the same breath

    Don’t you think if a man as a husband is oppressed in the system he as a brother and father is an oppressor?
    Don’t you think it is men who are oppressing other men on the backs of women? It is men’s honor being tested on women’s bodies.

    Isn’t it time men reclaimed their humanity and started behaving like humans? Is it human to stalk someone and then throw acid on them or is just male trait? More men die in road rage, war, gun violence, extreme sports, heart attacks and strokes. Are women pushing men into road rage, war and gun violence?

    Isn’t it time we as adults start taking responsibility for our welling and treat each other as equal humans. Isn’t it time we started asking right questions before we tie the knot and sign pre-nups?

    Also for your kind information, DG had every legitimate right to file 498A as she was physically abused and terrorist style tortured, she has medical records. While she was still in the hospital that man filed for divorce and declared her missing to the court and secured exparte divorce and here she is today.

    How 498A reached where it is thanks to over zealous custodians of criminal law read the last paragraph in purple.

    DG is done here, you are more than welcome to argue what ever you want but she is done.
    Desi Girl


    • Ekalavya July 22, 2013 at p07 #

      I don’t need to pick up the law files. I am just stating that if girl leave the matrimonial home that and never come back it is worst than divorce. The man is paying his half of property for a relationship of 12 days. That counts. let the court accept the case after one year or 10 years. And just and verify the law files .. if the case is violence against women, may be divorce granted before 365 .. it’s your turn.

      Even if you are done with me, I am not done with your unrelaistic claims and self pity of women.

      And if a girl comes with dowry is your alibi to argue women sacrificing somthing, so they deserve 50% share in property, then listen to my claim. Men must get dowry and all the gifts from women for marrying her. And 498A and Dowry law must not register cases for dowry claims. Because, we are giving 50% property after divorce because of all these nonsense claims, isn’t it?

      Not only that, men must not help wome in house hold work, what ever may be it is. Because, that is the reason for women to claim 50% share in property after divorce isn’t it? Then if man helps her in domestic work, they are doing unpaid work. So, no help.

      Women must leave children, because that’s what they are paid for after divorce with 50% of property. Isn’t it?

      One hand feminst asks men to hlep in domestic work, ask men to not take dowry any gift, but they want 50% of share in property. A typical feminist attitude. When women are advantageous “equality must be followed”, when men has advantage or at least equality “it’s male dominated society. No,equality”. What a comedy.

      Now about 365days before you can file the divorce, you can file any kind of civil or criminal suit at any time of the marriage be it day one or twelve but divorce can only be filed after 365days since the date of wedding.


      • Ekalavya July 22, 2013 at p07 #

        typos corrected:

        I don’t need to pick up the law files. I am just stating that, if girl leave the matrimonial home and never come back, that is worst than divorce. The man is paying his half of property for a relationship of 12 days. That counts. Let the court accept the case after one year or 10 years. And it’s you who need to verify the law files .. if the case is violence against women, may be divorce granted before 365 .. it’s your turn.

        Don’t worry what you have suggested married desi men must do they are already doing and it is serving them well. Oh, you forgot to mention, men should be master and lords of the home and should beat the crap out of dissidents. You fight your battles and we’ll fight ours. Good luck to both of us.


    • Gautam July 23, 2013 at p07 #


      seriously, but was your abuse in retaliation to your husband’s attack?

      Because even if he are the one who was physically hit by you FIRST which provoked him to hit you later (& then it is surely justified), his injuries wouldn’t take into account for the lack of any equivalent law (just like 498a) which secures men from domestic violence in a marital relationship in India.

      Or was it false accusation heaped on your husband or whatever was mentioned in the medical record (believing that you stating the truth) – was it self-inflicted so as to trap your husband?

      There are people who can go any length to manipulate their spouse.

      I am saying so because you keep on unfairly accusing your ex’s family on your blog – example, you were horrified & deeply agitated because you were disturbed during a physically intimate act with your ex-hubby by an overseas call from his mother, as if his mother had installed video surveillance system in your house (& as if she appreciates voyeur)
      The husband’s mood was turned off later and his refusal to carry it forward that particular night, left you with fire burning in your heart.

      If this is the kind of nature you possess, it certainly makes visitors to your blog to consider your story with suspicion.

      Who knows you might be the ‘opressor’ playing the ‘victim’ taking undue advantage of the gender-biased laws in India.

      If you so concerned about equality & fair treatment for both genders, you should atleast nod in agreement for a equivalent law for me (nobody’s obviously asking you to campaign for it, just an acceptance would be enough)

      Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.
      1. There is NO Excuse for violence/abuse. If you are aggrieved there are ways to resolve conflict in non violent ways. https://girlsguidetosurvival.wordpress.com/2010/11/02/take-back-the-night-2010/
      2. GGTS, a not just DG’s story, it is narratives of many women who have survived intimate partner abuse.
      3. GGTS is a safe space men here get equal voice and here are guest posts by men

      4. About the medical records DG never had to manipulate anything coz’ she was in the hospital in US and operated upon.
      5. Men can feel oppressed and emasculated by the legal system that is fine because for centuries they have enjoyed the male privilege and never questioned it.
      6. You have all the right to initiate your campaign and you should if you believe in the cause. To each their own… Do the best MRA campaign you can and you should.
      Desi Girl


  11. psharmarao July 22, 2013 at p07 #

    DG this a valuable historical and contextual view about inheritance of property but I have come across so many examples in real life including my own mother who would not claim her share in the ancestral agricultural land simply because she does not want to lessen her brothers’ share.
    This is insane and gets strengthened by the idea that if a married sister/daughter lays such claims she will be labelled utterly selfish and will lose good will with her siblings.On the other hand women still shirk from investing their own money or buying property etc. in their own name because husbands would feel offended and short-changed,which again I don’t understand.
    A lot of my friends most of them in 30s and 40s do not know how much is their husband’s exact salary or share in any property or investment.Asking these questions (I DID) labels you as money-minded,wanting to control the husband and his finances and the worst fate is working women who hand over all their salary/income/investments to husbands for better management.


    Welcome back to GGTS, a safe space.
    While retaining patriarchy in its current form, patrilocal, verilocal, patrinymic it is hard to get women any property rights in both natal and marital family; in former she is out bound (paraya dhan) in the latter it she is outsider (paraye ghar ki). In order to hold a immovable property one has to belong somewhere and women belong NO where.
    Women talking about money is a taboo because it shows woman is capable of not only talking money but capable of making decisions about what to do with it. It is woman’s agency that scares not just men but also women, some fear to take charge as they are not confident and others are dissuaded in the name of selflessness. It is pretty screwed up system.
    These days young working women are making investments in immovable property that was an alien concept until a decade ago.
    Thank you for you valubale comment. Please share this post.
    Desi Girl


    • Sherry January 4, 2014 at p01 #

      When I asked my husband about his investments details, his share of his ancestral property, his other properties, his earnings and expenses, he labelled me as a money minded woman who is after his property. He always remarks that he will put all his properties and assets in my name when he dies and I need not worry. (Why doesn’t he do it right away if he really wants to do it) I do not want his properties. He earned for it, he can very well distribute it among his beloved family or bury it. But, he needs to make sure that I have enough security in case of any eventuality. I married him as he assured me that I will be taken care of.

      Do you think that was a good reason to marry him? Didn’t you hear the idiom, “if you marry for money you’ll earn every penny?”

      Who ever files for divorce takes the other to the cleaners in these kangroo courts. 🙂



      • raghunath August 14, 2015 at p08 #

        Baby you earn yourself. You take property from your parents.


        • girlsguidetosurvival October 29, 2015 at p10 #

          Welcome to GGTS, a safe space.

          You are right a woman should get property from her parents. That is what we have been saying all along. Instead of spending money on decorations and feeding thousands of grooms party give her immovable assets.

          How about starting with you? Ask you dad to give some property to your sister(s) and encourage you mom to seek some from her dad or brother(s).
          Please share this message of hope with anyone who may benefit.
          Desi Girl


  12. Santulan July 22, 2013 at p07 #

    You’re back!

    (unrelated to this post, I tried looking for you on FB, and couldn’t find you) can you PM me?

    Ping me on girlsguidetosurvival @ gmail dot com
    I didn’t cook all this time.



  1. So why don’t Indian women fight for their own ancestral property rights? | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker - July 22, 2013

    […] Unlike Indian men (ghar ka chiraag, budhape ka sahara, Shravan Kumar) most Indian women (paraya dhan, family’s honor) believe (and they are often right) they have no automatic rights to identity, inheritance or a roof over their heads. Many Indian women don’t know that they own their uterus. What Indian women are raised to fight for, is the  generosity and the good will of their brothers and in laws, who have rights. […]


  2. Instead of eyeing their husbands’ ancestral property, why don’t Indian daughters in law make their own homes? | The Life and Times of an Indian Homemaker - July 22, 2013

    […] Desi Girl: Her Marital Home: His Inherited Property. […]


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A Desi Girl's Guide to Relationship Survival

Own your relationships. Don't let them own you.

From the wet market

Mostly vegetarian meals from Asia

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