George's wife, brother tell court no settlement possible

Senior advocate Aman Lekhi, appearing for Fernandes’s wife Leila Kabir, submitted before Justice V K Shali: “We made a very generous effort but reached no conclusion. We don’t have a problem with the brothers visiting George, but have objection to the other people coming along with them.”

Countering Kabir, senior advocate K N Balagopal, appearing for Fernandes’s brother Richard, said: “Even we want to solve the issue amicably, but we want some privacy when we meet our brother.”

“After our meeting with George on Wednesday, he said he wants to go to court and tell the truth to everyone,” he added. Objecting to this, Lekhi said: “The petitioners are not focused. Firstly, they want meeting rights, then want constitution of a medical board and now they want George to depose in court. It is unacceptable.”
Accepting Lekhi’s contention, the court asked counsel for Richard Fernandes to amend the petition and slated the next hearing for June 3.

“This is not a legal matter but a family matter. So it should be solved amicably,” the court advised Leila Kabir and Fernandes’ brothers on Wednesday.

George Fernandes, 79, is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. In his petition, Richard alleged that Leila had deserted his brother 25 years ago and now suddenly came back into his life when he was ill. He alleged Fernandes has been put under confinement by his wife and son and that he was prevented from meeting his ailing brother.Richard’s petition also alleged that Fernandes’ wife and son “had forcibly taken him to an undisclosed location on the pretext of giving him medical care” and sought he and Michael, the former minister’s two brothers, be given access to the ailing George.

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