A contender for Dilip Kumar’s house in Mohallah Khudad has come forth to challenge the decision of the provincial government to convert the acting legend’s house into a heritage site.
The petition was filed in the PHC by Haji Lal Muhammad through his lawyer Shah Nawaz Khan and was heard on Thursday. During the hearing, Justice Yaha Afridi who was hearing the petition with Justice Musarrat Hilali, recused himself and referred it to another bench, saying he was associated with the case.
The provincial chief secretary, culture and information secretary, revenue and estate district officer, and director culture have been made respondents.
In his petition, Haji Lal Muhammad claims he is the lawful owner of the five-marla house situated in Mohallah Khudad, purchased from Muhammad Badshah and his wife Saeeda Khatoon for Rs515,000 on January 5, 2008.
“The aforementioned house was initially in the ownership of Ghulam Mohiyuddin alias Gul Jee who transferred the said property (deed no123) on January 26, 1943 for Rs2,000 to Ghulam Sarwar who is the father of Yousaf Khan, also known as Dilip Kumar, the Indian film star,” states the petition.
It goes on to add that Ghulam Sarwar then transferred the property to Muhammad Yaqoob Qureshi on January 29, 1943 via an unregistered deed for Rs2,000. The house came into the ownership of Muhammad Badshah from his father Qureshi.
On January 29, 1995, Badshah transferred two marlas to his daughter and the remaining three marlas to his wife Saeeda Khatoon on April 4, 2005. The house was then sold the house to Haji Lal Muhammad, read the petition.
In 2012, on the 89th birthday of Dilip Kumar, the provincial government issued a notification under Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act 1894 regarding the house. It initially agreed to pay Rs30 million to Haji Lal Muhammad for the house, it said in the petition.
“After various meetings with the attorney of the petitioner, the government then made an offer of Rs11,224,242 which was then raised to Rs14,246,225. However, the petitioner refused because the market value of the aforementioned house is more than what the respondents offered.“
The acquisition process fell flat, however and the government neglected to officially terminate the acquisition process for the Kumar house, read the petition.
The high court has now been asked to declare the notifications and proceedings related to the acquisition of the house as “illegal, unlawful and unconstitutional”. The petition filed on Thursday requested the court to direct the government to cancel the acquisition, recall the notification under Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act 1894 and “release the property to the petitioner for his use, sale, transfer, reconstruction and development”.
This petition was filed with the court on the back of the government’s decision to declare both Dilip Kumar and Raj Kapoor’s homes as heritage sites once the revenue department completes all formalities.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 18th, 2014.