Union Cabinet may take up Nizam's cash case

Union Cabinet may take up Nizam's cash case

The Union cabinet is expected to take a decision next week elaborating the stand the UPA government will take in Britain to stake claim on erstwhile Hyderabad Nizam’s Rs 310 crore lying in one of their banks post-independence.

The contentious ‘Hyderabad Funds Case’ is likely to be revived in High Court Chancery in London soon given the fact out of court settlement between three parties — India, Pakistan and an heir of former princely state has failed.

The Union Cabinet under Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will go through legal opinion external affairs ministry officials had sought from their law ministry counterpart.

 The government sources do not rule out the possibility of India filling an appeal in the British Court to counter Pakistan’s locus standi on the grounds that the money belongs to them since the princely state with all its assets was merged into the country.
In April 2013, Pakistan had staked claim over the cash seeking vacation of stay order of the London court.

Nizam of Hyderabad had held an account in UK’s Westminster Bank (later rechristened as NatWest Bank) having a balance of 1 million pound before Independence.

The Nizam’s finance minister prior to the Hyderabad princely state’s annexation into India in September 1948 had illegally wired the amount to the then Pakistan’s High Commissioner to UK.  Nizam’s account was closed.

The then Nizam had dragged his finance minister and then Pakistan High Commissioner Ibrahim Rahimtoohla to a British court. House of Lords, however, had stayed court proceeding in 1957 after Pakistan sought sovereign immunity from legal battle.

A grandson of Nizam had also claimed that the money belonged to him.

Since then, the dispute remains despite diplomatic attempts to resolve the issue.

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