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WILL IS INTERFERENCE OF NORMAL SUCCESSION – NATURAL HEIRS ARE DEPRIVED IN CASE OF WILL IS USUAL 1995 SC

FULL JUDGMENT
RABINDRA NATH MUKHERJEE AND ANOTHER vs PANCHANAN BANERJEE (DEAD) BY LRS. AND OTHERS, . AIR 1995 SC 1684, 1995 SCC (4) 459 In this case their Lordships have held as under: "The circumstances of deprivation of natural heirs should not raise any suspicion because the whole idea behind execution of will is to interefere with the normal line of succession. So natural heirs would be debarred in every case of will. Of course, it may be that in some cases they are fully debarred and in others only partially. As in the present case, the two executors are sons of a half-blood brother of the testatrix whereas the objectors descendants of a full blood sister, the disinheritance of the latter could not have been taken as a suspicious circumstance, when some of her descendants are even beneficiaries under the Will. The identification by the lawyer could have been regarded as a suspicious circumstances if a wrong person would have been identified as the testatrix. That, however, is not the case of the objectors. So, there is no bane in this circumstance. The third circumstance can not also be said to be suspicious. Witnesses in such documents verify whether the same had been executed voluntarily by the person concerned knowing its contents. In case where a will is registered and the Sub-Registrar certifies that the same had been read over to the executor who, on doing so, admitted the contents, the fact that the witnesses to the document are interested loses significance. The documents at hand were registered and it is on record that the Sub-Registrar had explained the contents to the old lady. Objection as regards `ubiquitous', cannot be there if there be other circumstances on record to show the voluntary character of the document. Such circumstances were present in this case. Taking total view of the circumstances, which has to be the approach, it must be held that the Courts below overplayed some circumstances which they regarded as suspicious and somehow missed some circumstances which bolstered the case of the propounders."

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