The Proof of Valid Wills II

A circumstance is ‘suspicious’ when it is not normal. The suspicious features must be ‘real, germane and valid’ and not merely the ‘fantasy of the doubting mind’ [Shivakumar, Civil Appeal No. 6076 of 2009].

An individual factor may not be decisive. If after taking all the factors together, conscience of the Court is not satisfied that the Will in question truly represents the last wish, the Will cannot get the approval of the Court. We are satisfied that the Will in question is besieged by multiple suspicious circumstances, which have not been cleared; rather every suspicious circumstance is more baffling than the other.

For example, the manner of writing and execution of the Will with technical and legal words is highly doubtful. The handwritten portions carry such formal and legal expressions like ‘testament’ and ‘set and subscribed my hand’, which are the tools of the language employed by a person who is conversant with legal format and requirements for execution of such a document. The printed portion also carries the expressions like ‘codicil’, ‘give, devise and bequeath’ which are not the expressions of a layperson.

Hon’ble Justice Dinesh Maheshwari, Kavita Kanwar v. Mrs. Pamela Mehta, [Civil Appeal No. 3688 of 2017].Will