--> Skip to main content

Uttaradhikari In Hinduism

Uttaradhikari is successor to an office vacated by the predecessor by way of retirement, transfer or death. In domestic matters, when the father or the karta of the family dies, his place is taken by his legal heir who acts as the kart and is called uttaradhikari.

According to ancient Hindu law, the son, the grandson, and the great grandson come in the list of uttaradhikari of a person. Manusmriti (9/13), Vasishta (17/5), Vishnu (15/46) and Yajnavalkya (1/78) advocate this theory.

According to the Mitakshara theory, the son, the grandson or the great grandson have the right of succession to one’s property.

Baudhayana Dharmasutra (115/113) tell us that an individual, his real brother, his own caste wife’s son, grandson or a great grandson are called as avibhakta-daya-sapinda; only in the absence of these the property of a person goes to his distant relatives.

If a person dies without a son, a grandson, or a great grandson, according to Yajnavalkya, his wife, daughters (their sons), mother-father, brothers (their sons), sa-gotras (of the same gotra), sapinda relatives, disciples and class fellows are among those one who will get his property. This law is applicable to every caste.

Vishnu Dharmasutra (17/4 – 15) also supports this statement. In one’s separate property the widow of that person gets the first place among his sons. After several centuries of struggle, the widow of a person is now recognized as his successor, under the Hindu law.

According to Manusmriti, a wife without a son is not the successor of the deceased. In his view the issueless person’s property should go to his mother, brother sagotras or the king. Yajnavalkya and Vishnu advocated that, after the death of a person, in the absence of offspring, his will be his uttaradhikari. In the absence of a son, the daughter’s son will be the uttaradhikari.