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Jinnah House row: HC allows Nusli Wadia to replace his mother as petitioner

Press Trust of India  |  Mumbai 

The High Court has allowed Nusli to replace his late mother as a petitioner in a case she has filed to claim the ownership of Muhammad Ali Jinnah's house here.

A division bench of Justices and allowed yesterday an application filed by seeking to replace his mother as the petitioner following her death last year.

The had opposed Nusli Wadia's plea.

'House', a seafront bungalow on in south built by Pakistan's founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah, has been at the centre of a prolonged legal battle between Jinnah's daughter and the

had in August 2007 approached the high court claiming that being the sole legal heir of Jinnah, she should get the possession of the house.

After she passed away on November 2, 2017 in at the age of 98, sought to replace her.

The industrialist relied on his mother's will dated April 16, 2009, where he was appointed as the executor.

Union government's counsel, Adwait Sethna, opposed the application, arguing that had not obtained probate of the will (probate is certification of a will as valid by the high court), so he could not substitute his mother in the case.

In yesterday's order, the high court had said it is keeping this issue open, and it can be raised at the time of the hearing of the main petition about House's ownership.

For now, it was allowing Nusli Wadia to be substituted as the petitioner, the court said.

Dina Wadia was the only child of and his Parsi wife

According to her petition, the erstwhile state of took over the property after Jinnah's death, as his sister was the of his will and she was declared an evacuee (one who migrated to post-partition) in 1949.

The petition claimed that Jinnah's will was never probated by the high court, and therefore "had no effect".

Fatima Jinnah, therefore, could not be the legal owner and so the house should be handed over to his (Muhammad Ali Jinnah's) legal heir, Dina Wadia contended.

Dina Wadia was the sole legal heir of Jinnah both under the Hindu Law (applicable to the Khoja community, to which Jinnah belonged, before Independence) or the Shia Muslim law, the petition said.

The opposed the plea, stating that the Jinnah House belonged to the and only or her legal heirs could claim any rights over it. died in 1967.

The government also raised the issue of delay in filing of petition by Dina Wadia.

The hearing of the petition will resume in due course.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, August 09 2018. 17:20 IST