The dispute over ownership of the Chabad House in Colaba, south Mumbai, is now being fought before the charity commissioner.
Eliran Russo, constituted attorney of Rabbi Nachman and Freida Holtzberg, Moshe’s grandparents, has opposed induction of new trustees in the Chabad India Trust, which was founded by Moshe’s parents — Rabbi Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg.
Russo had filed affidavit last week through his counsels Ashish Ved and Manoj Jaiswal opposing the Change Report’ filed by Shailesh Dalvi, advocate with law firm Mulla and Mulla.
A Change Report is an application for introducing change in trusteeship.
Dalvi was inducted as a trustee by Gavriel in 2006. After death of Holtzbergs, Dalvi has sought induction of Moshe Dov Gansborg and Joel Kurulkar as trustees instead of Gavriel and Rivka.
Russo has opposed this Change Report stating that Dalvi is not Jewish and hence cannot file a Change Report.
Russo’s counsels had also filed a Change Report in 2009, seeking induction of Nachman, Shimons Rosenberg (Rivka’s father) and one Moses Samson as trustees.
The Chabad Trust is collecting money for reconstructing the building.
“Also there is likelihood that funds collected may be misused,” alleges Russo’s affidavit.
Pervez Rustomkhan, counsel for Dalvi, sought time to file his reply on Russo’s affidavit.
Dalvi, who was present in the charity commissioner’s officer, refused to speak saying, “No comments.”
Assistant charity commissioner BS Kharade will now hear the case on December 3.
Rabbi Joseph Kantor, who claims he was appointed by the New York-headquartered Chabad Lubavitch as its official “responsible for the rebuilding effort in Mumbai” is also opposing induction of Nachman and Rosenberg.
Kantor has filed a suit in the city civil and sessions court against Russo carrying out renovation at the Nariman House.