Defence witnesses gave contradictory evidence on nass
MUMBAI: Anand Desai, the counsel for plaintiff Syedna Taher Fakhruddin in the Syedna succession case, while refuting the nass conferred on the defendant in 2005 and 1969, drew the attention of the Bombay high court to the various anomalies present in the defendant’s and defence witnesses’ statements
MUMBAI: Anand Desai, the counsel for plaintiff Syedna Taher Fakhruddin in the Syedna succession case, while refuting the nass conferred on the defendant in 2005 and 1969, drew the attention of the Bombay high court to the various anomalies present in the defendant’s and defence witnesses’ statements.
The counsel submitted that the evidence by the third defence witness Abdul Qadir Nooruddin could not be relied upon, as his evidence in several instances was contrary to the statements of the defendant and other witnesses. He argued that Nooruddin’s name was inserted in the instances of nass on the defendant as an afterthought.
Desai referred to a notebook, which, the defence counsel had claimed, was the place where the 52nd Dai had recorded the 1969 nass performed on the defendant. He said that the defendant in a sermon in 2014 had said that no one opened the cupboard except the 52nd Dai; however, witness Abdul Qadir Nooruddin had stated that he had got the notebook to be shown to the defendant. Desai submitted that it seemed that just as the conferment of the nass had evolved as per the need in the suit, Nooruddin was giving statements accordingly.
The senior counsel then referred to the evidence of Nooruddin, who claimed that he was asked by the 52nd Dai to call his two sons in 2005. Desai said that his evidence was contrary to the statements of Shehzada Malekul Ashtar, who claimed that the two brothers were called directly.
Desai told the court that the statements vis-a-vis nass being conferred by the 52nd Dai on the defendant in 2005 had many lapses and hence could not be accepted. For instance, while Shehzada Malekul Ashtar, the ninth defence witness, had submitted that in 2005, the 52nd Dai had personally called him and his brother Shehzada Qaid Johar to his bedroom and told them that nass was conferred on the defendant Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin, there was no mention about the 2005 nass after the leader purportedly conferred nass on the defendant on June 4, 2011.
The bench was told that not only did the details of the event evolve, but the words attributed to the 52nd Dai by Ashtar and Qaid Johar also evolved over time as different words kept being attributed to the 52nd Dai at different stages of the suit.
Desai submitted that though the defendant claimed that the nass of 1969 was witnessed by several persons, those very persons continued to indulge in acts of reverence to the original plaintiff Syedna Khuzaima Qutbuddin, which were done only to a Dai or a Dai-to-be till their demise.
Referring to the submission of the defendant that he had been shown the notebook by the 52nd Dai in 2009 while he was alone, Desai argued that if that had been the case, the defendant would have referred to it in his sermons after June 2011 till the demise of his predecessor in 2014, but the notebook was only mentioned after the original plaintiff announced the 1965 nass on him.