Adjourning the matter for two weeks, Justices S C Dharmadhikari and Abhay Thipsay restrained Marine Drive police from taking any action until then. Essa, 83, left for Kuwait in April this year following a kidney replacement surgery after spending three decades in India.
He has alleged that a person named Punamiya forcibly occupied the flat in his absence. Punamiya, however, told the court that Essa handed over the flat's tenancy to him in September 2012 for a rent of Rs 50,000 a month. He had also lodged a complaint that Essa threatened him at gunpoint. Based on Punamiya's complaint, a magistrate had earlier directed police to initiate criminal process against Essa.
Ashok Mundargi, counsel for Punamiya, told the High Court that he would like to file an affidavit as there are allegations against his client. The petition filed by Essa alleged that Punamiya was using his clout by virtue of his proximity to the city police commissioner Satyapal Singh as they were good family friends.
The Al-Sabah Court building was bought by the royal family in the early 1950s, while the neighbouring Al-Jaberia building is in possession of fellow royals, the Jabars of Kuwait. Essa had administrative powers of both the buildings till 2010. He then requested the then king of Kuwait, His Highness Shaikh Saad Al-Abdullah Al-Salem Al-Sabah, to transfer Al-Jaberia's administrative powers to another person while he continued looking after Al-Sabah. After the king's death in 2012, his heirs renewed Essa's administrative powers over Al-Sabah.