Syedna Succession case: Nass conferred on defendant in June 2011 corroborated by audio recording
The single-judge bench of Justice Gautam Patel, which has been hearing the suit initiated by Syedna Khuzaima Qutbuddin and later continued by his son Syedna Taher Fakhruddin, was first informed by senior defence advocate Janak Dwarkadas about the nass conferred in 1969 by the 52nd Dai on Syedna Saifuddin
Mumbai: As final arguments in the Syedna succession case resumed in the Bombay high court on Wednesday, defendant Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin’s counsel referred to the audio recording as well as the direct evidence of the 52nd Dai’s grandson to disprove the plaintiff’s claim that the June 4, 2011, conferment of nass at Cromwell hospital in London was concocted and the handiwork of the defendant and his coterie.
The bench was informed about the sequence of events at the hospital to prove that the 52nd Dai was in control of his movements and cognisant of what was going on around him when he conferred nass in the presence of family members.
The single-judge bench of Justice Gautam Patel, which has been hearing the suit initiated by Syedna Khuzaima Qutbuddin and later continued by his son Syedna Taher Fakhruddin, was first informed by senior defence advocate Janak Dwarkadas about the nass conferred in 1969 by the 52nd Dai on Syedna Saifuddin.
This nass, Dwarkadas submitted, had been witnessed by three persons. Though they were dead by the time of the trial, documents written by them had made a mention of the nass, and those documents had been verified by live witnesses. Dwarkadas also stated that the notebook of the 52nd Dai, in which the conferment of the nass was noted, was also confirmed by the documents of the deceased witnesses.
Dwarkadas then referred to the nass of November 2005 which was done by the 52nd Dai in the presence of his two sons, Shehzada Qaid Johar and Malekul Ashtar, to drive home the point that there were living witnesses to the nass as well.
At this point, Justice Patel sought to know the material which the defendant would rely upon to respond to the plaintiff’s claim that doctrinally nass, once conferred, could not be revoked. Dwarkadas assured the court that senior advocate Fredun Di’Vitre would deal with the issue.
He then commenced recounting the chain of events on June 4, 2011, at Cromwell Hospital. Dwarkadas relied upon the deposition of Abdulqadir Moiz Nooruddin, the grandson of the 52nd Dai, who was present along with his father at Cromwell Hospital in London since the day the erstwhile leader was admitted after suffering a stroke on June 1, 2011.
Nooruddin had stated in his deposition that on June 4, 2011, when he reached the hospital in the afternoon, he had seen the 52nd Dai doing namaz and reciting the Quran silently. Nooruddin had stated that though the leader was weak and his voice was low and slurred, he was able to talk and at times was repeating words to clarify what he was saying.
The deposition further stated that three of the Dai’s sons had come to meet him but the Dai had asked them to wait and did not allow them to leave though they had sought permission to do so. Later, at around 8 pm, when the Dai expressed a desire to sit, he was made to sit with some support and began praising Allah and seeking refuge.
At this point, Nooruddin stated, his father realised that the Dai was about to make some important statement and hence directed him to start recording, which he did on his mobile phone. Dwarkadas informed the bench that the recording was played before the court, which Justice Patel confirmed.
These submissions, Dwarkadas told the bench, disproved the plaintiffs’ claim that the entire incident at the hospital was concocted, as there was direct evidence as well as the audio recording to prove that the conferment of nass had actually happened.