The half-brother and the son of late Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin, the deceased spiritual head of the million-strong Dawoodi Bohra community, Thursday mutually consented before the Bombay High Court to have an “expeditious trial” of a dispute over the appointment of Dai-al-Mutlaq or spiritual head of the community.
Justice Gautam Patel Thursday fixed July 17 for pre-trial directions while acting on a suit filed by the half-brother Khuzaima Qutbuddin (73) that contested the appointment of the Syedna’s son Mufaddal Saifuddin as his successor. The judge also asked Qutbuddin to submit the required documents supporting his claim by July 7.
Qutbuddin (73), who sought entry to Saifi Manzil, the house of the community leader, has filed a 700-page suit asking the court to restrain Syedna Saifuddin (70) from acting as the Dai-al-Mutlaq.
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In reply to the suit, the defendant, Syedna Saifuddin, filed a detailed 494-page affidavit dated April 23, 2014.
Qutbuddin, in his suit, has claimed he is the real successor as he was the Mazoon. He said after Burhanuddin was appointed Syedna, he had publicly appointed his younger brother Qutbuddin as his Mazoon and privately anointed him as his successor.
While for majority of the members of the community, there is no doubt over the succession of Syedna Burhanuddin’s son as the next Syedna, the followers of Qutbuddin consider him the rightful successor. They said that he has been the late Syedna’s closest aide over the years.
The son and half-brother of the late Syedna fought over succession soon after the leader’s death in January 18.