Mary Roy

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Mary Roy is an Indian educator and women's rights activist, known for winning a lawsuit in 1986, against the inheritance legislation of her Keralite Syrian Christian community in the Supreme Court. The judgement ensured equal rights for Syrian Christian women, with their male siblings in their ancestral property.[1][2] Till then, the Syrian Christian community followed the provisions of the Travancore Succession Act of 1916, while elsewhere in India the same community followed the Indian Succession Act of 1925.[3]

Mary Roy was denied her share of the familial property due to the sexist Travancore Succession Act of 1916. She sued her brothers[clarification needed] after her father's death. This was the case that made its way through the Indian court system and which she won.

Roy is the founder-director of Pallikoodam school (formerly Corpus Christi High School) at Kalathilpady, a suburb of Kottayam town in the state of Kerala. Her daughter is the Man Booker Prize winner Arundhati Roy.


  1. ^ George Iype. "'Ammu may have some similarities to me, but she is not Mary Roy'". rediff. Retrieved 12 May 2013. 
  2. ^ George Jacob (29 May 2006). "Bank seeks possession of property in Mary Roy case". The Hindu. Retrieved 12 May 2013. 
  3. ^ "Final decree in Mary Roy case executed". Retrieved 21 October 2010. 

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