Reneging on Elderly Gifted Property: An Analysis of the TPA and the Senior Citizens Act
Student at O.P Jindal Global University, India
Volume II – Issue II, 2021
This Article examines the concomitant provisions of the Transfer of Property Act, 1882 of Sections 126 and 31 along with the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007 of Section 23(1). Noting the ability of a special legislation to prevail over a general one, the scope of the Senior Citizen Act’s provision is assessed to see if it merely denominates specific conditions under which revocation is to take place laying harmoniously with the Transfer of Property Act’s provisions or it surpasses the aforesaid completely. To provide such context, the Article analyzes a series of judgments of both legislations to first gauge the express condition rule that follows Sections 126 and 31 of the Transfer of Property Act deducing that when interpreted liberally, even an implied condition is sufficient for Section 23(1) of the Senior Citizens Act to apply which would otherwise be outside the prerogative of the Transfer of Property Act’s provisions. Further, this Article assesses the deemed fiction of ‘undue influence’ when the condition of maintenance of a senior citizen is unfulfilled in conjunction with the power of the applicant to void a gift deed at pleasure under Section 23(1) of the Senior Citizen Act. To this extent the Article finds that this part of the clause in the way it creates a new type of revocation of gift deeds at the option of the doner is unparalleled to that of Section 126 of the Transfer of Property Act that explicitly bars revocation at the will of the doner through the deemed fiction of ‘undue influence’ et al. This creates a unique situation in the Senior Citizen Act’s provision of differentiating itself in operating on a different plane altogether and yet maintaining non-repugnancy to the general legislation’s provision of Section 126. Finally, the Article puts forth a recommendation first in the interest of a uniform liberal interpretation of the Senior Citizen Act’s provisions horizontally throughout various High Courts, the Act being a remedial statute. The second set of recommendations stem from the learning of the way paradanashin ladies are treated under the Transfer of Property Act’s provisions.
Keywords: Senior Citizens, Property Rights, Transfer of Property Act, Remedial Statutes, Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, Conditional Gifts, Revocation of Gift Deeds