By Express News Service – CHENNAI
05th July 2012 07:48 AM
Does an erstwhile Pandya king really hold a Swiss bank account? The Madras High Court has directed the Union finance ministry to unlock the mystery and file a report within three weeks.
A division bench on Monday gave the direction while passing further interim orders on a writ petition from R Padmini Rani, wife of S K N Raveendranath of Tirunelveli, who claimed she was legal heir of Varaguna Pandya Chinna Thambiar.
In her writ petition, Rani prayed for directions to identify and handover to her, all immovable properties belonging to the Sivagiri Estate. The properties are currently being administered by the Tirunelveli District Collector. Following a direction of the bench on June 15 last, the government, through the Central Crime Branch, Chennai filed a report, which claimed that a huge amount of money was deposited in the name of the Pandya King in a bank in Switzerland.
Several civil suits had been filed by S K Jegannathan, a close relative of Rani, who too claimed he was the legal heir of Thambiar.
In all these suits, Rani got herself impleaded as a party-respondent. Vidhya Patwardhan, another claimant for legal heir status, is the sister of Maya, who married Swiss national Giuseppe Leipoldo Cassina. Cassina, who died in a road accident recently, was said to be the power of attorney of Jegannathan.