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Limitation period for setting aside sale of ancestral property

By Shivendra Pratap Singh

What is the limitation period for setting aside the sale of the ancestral property? My father sold ancestral property against the will of my family. I was minor at the time of sale. Can I file any suit for cancellation of that sale deed?

If a son, desires to set aside the sale of the ancestral property, he should file a civil suit for cancellation of the sale deed. The limitation period for filing of such suit is twelve years when the buyer takes possession of the property. The limitation period starts from the date when buyer takes possession on the basis of a sale deed.

If the son was a minor at the time of sale, he could file the said suit within three years after attaining the age of eighteen years. According to article 60 of the Indian limitation act, a minor person should file such suit within three years from the date when he attained the age of majority, i.e. age of eighteen years.

The Hindu Minority and Guardianship Act of 1956

If a guardian has appointed by the court for the minor child then his age of majority will consider on twenty-one years. Therefore, he can file the civil suit after attaining the age of twenty-one year.

In your case, you were minor at the time when your mother alienated the ancestral property. Your mother was the guardian so by virtue of section 6 of the Hindu Minority and Guardianship Act. According to it, the mother becomes the natural guardian of minor after the death of his father. Hence, the limitation period for filing such suit is three years from the attaining the age of eighteen years.

Karta has the power to file a civil suit

You said that at the time of alleged alienation your age was twenty years and your younger brother’s age was fifteen years. In this situation, you could file the suit at the time of execution of sale deed.

However, a Karta or managing member of the joint Hindu family has the right to file such a suit. A son becomes Karta of the HUF after attaining the age of majority. Therefore, rights and power of Karta in respect of HUF was vested in you at the time of sale. You mother had no right to sell the joint family property without your consent. Such transfer of property is illegal and void.

You should immediately file such suit because you as a “Karta” has the right to initiate the legal proceeding for setting aside of sale deed.

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