34 yrs on, siblings get right over father’s properties from cousin
MUMBAI: Three siblings won the right over the properties owned by their late father from their cousin after a 34-year fight. Their first cousin had allegedly taken their father’s thumb impression on the transfer deed, when he was bedridden.
Fakirmohamed Karim Mistry’s sons – Azam and Imtiaz– and his daughter Shehnaz Memon, had filed a suit against their cousin Dr Shiraz Rahim Karim Mistry in 1984, claiming rights over their father’s properties in the city and in Lonavala. Shiraz died during the case, following which the three continued the fight against his wife, siblings and their children.
As per the suit filed by the three siblings, Shiraz was the son of Fakirmohamed’s brother Rahim. The two brothers with their families stayed in the same building at Churchgate. After Fakirmohamed’s divorce, he
shifted to his brother’s home, while his children continued to stay with his wife. Fakirmohamed continued to stay with his brother’s family, even after Rahim’s death in 1977.
The suit claimed that Fakirmohamed was suffering from Parkinson’s and his health worsened in 1983. His speech became slurred. He was not able to move his hands much and was under constant medical treatment. Shiraz looked after him during the period.
The siblings claimed Fakirmohamed signed a deed of release, transferring many of his properties to Shiraz around that time. However, he did not sign the deed in writing but it was executed by his thumb print. Under the deed, Fakirmohamed surrendered all his rights over various properties to Shiraz.
After Fakirmohamed’s death, Shiraz claimed that Fakirmohamed had relinquished his rights in all properties. Despite several notices and replies, both sides failed to come to a conclusion, following which Fakirmohamed’s children moved a court against Shiraz.
After hearing the two sides, the court, after 34 years, accepted the claim made by the three siblings, observing that, “the said documents has been engineered in a dubious manner by somehow obtaining the thumb impression on one sheet of paper, which appears to have been adjusted at the last page of the alleged deed for such engineered execution.”