A civil court on Tuesday slapped a fine of Rs 70 lakh on the cousins of royal scion Samarjitsinh Gaekwad in connection with a civil suit filed by the former in 2017 against Samarjitsinh and 13 of his family members claiming 50 per cent share in the properties worth crores of rupees. In addition, the plaintiffs, legal heirs of late Govindrao Gaekwad, who was also the great-grandfather of Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad, will have to pay Rs 10 lakh to the district legal services authority.
During the course of the case, the court concluded that the present suit is false and vexatious for multiple reasons. “The suit property is absolute property of last ruler of Vadodara late Fatehsinh Rao Gaekwad. The present plaintiffs are not the legal heirs of late Fatehsingh Rao Gaekwad or his father Pratapsinh Rao Gaekwad or his grandfather Fatehsinh Rao(III) ruler of Vadodara and plaintiffs are not able to establish that their right exist in the suit property and their right infringed by the defendants.”
In July 2017, Satyashiladevi Gaekwad, widow of Vijaysinh Gaekwad, and her four children, descendants of Govindrao Gaekwad I had filed a suit against Samarjitsinh, Sangramsinh and other members of the royal family who were involved in the property dispute of 2013. The suit was based on the claim that around 39 properties in the city and across the country, which was divided between Samarjitsinh and his uncle Sangramsinh Gaekwad, is ancestral and not independently owned by anyone. The plaintiffs had urged in the court that all the properties be declared as partitioned so that Satyashila and her children get 50 per cent share.