A ninety-seven-year-old man has approached the Delhi High Court challenging certain provisions of the law that gives benefit to the aged persons to get declared as void the property transferred to their children in case they are not taken care of.

The petition has challenged the provisions of the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007 under which a senior citizen, who after the commencement of the law, has transferred his property to another person, subject to the condition that the transferee will take care of the basic amenities and basic physical needs of the transferor.

However, the benefit is not provided to those who have transferred their properties prior to the Act.

As per the provision, if the transferee fails to do so, the transfer of property shall be deemed to have been made by fraud or coercion or under undue influence and the tribunal may declare it void at the option of the transferor.

The nonagenarian petitioner said the obligation on the persons inheriting the property of their aged relatives to maintain them is confined only in respect of transfers effected after the commencement of the Act and thus affords the benefit to the senior citizens who transfer the property after the commencement of the Act.

However, similarly situated senior citizens who had effected the transfer of their property to their wards, with identical conditions of maintenance, prior to the Act, and have been deserted by the transferees, are denied this valuable benefit of having the transfer declared as void, it said.

A Bench of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad issued notice and sought a response of the Centre on the petition.

The Court listed the matter for further hearing on December 13.

The petition, filed through Advocate Sudarshan Ranjan said two of the petitioner's sons fraudulently got gift deeds signed by him in respect of certain portions of his property here in May 2007 and now even the rent from those portions has been taken away by the sons.

It said after the execution of the gift deed, the Central government notified the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007 and it came into force in September 2008.

Had the Act been notified and brought into force slightly earlier, the petitioner too would have been covered under the Act, it said.

The man claimed that his sons did not take care of or maintain him and instead they started enjoying the gift fraudulently obtained by him by giving the property on rent and earning huge money every month.

The petition has challenged Section 23 of the Act, which relates to the transfer of property to be void in certain circumstances.

With PTI inputs