25 September 2021
These are the contentions of the parties in the case.
Contentions of the Appellant:
1. The respondent has not shown any evidence that Mr. DaCosta asked the appellant to release the Will of Mrs. Mary Raymond that had been entrusted to him, and that the appellant refused.
Mr. George DaCosta's letter to the Chairman of the Karnataka Bar Council's Disciplinary Committee flatly contradicts the respondent's charges.
2. The contested Will had been cancelled and returned to Mrs. Mary, who was still living at the time. That fact was supported by an endorsement made by the appellant's wife in the register of Wills, and even if the Will had not been returned, the appellant cannot be said to have committed any breach of trust by keeping the revoked Will, which after its revocation had become a mere scrap-paper.
3. The appellant acknowledged receiving the second letter, but disputed Will's demand in his alleged first letter, and noted that the respondent had failed to establish the claims by interrogating Mr. DaCosta.
Contentions of the Respondent:
1. The respondent argued that the appellant who had the Will in his possession was acting in the capacity of a Trustee, and that as such, he was entitled to have the Will returned on demand, and that the issue of indirect purpose or private benefit was irrelevant.
2. It cannot be stated that the Will had become res nullius because neither Mrs. Mary nor the respondent, as the legal representative of the testatrix's estate, had abandoned the Will, which was their property.
3. He claimed that the appellant should have received or been presumed to have received the first letter.
4. The facts and circumstances of the case have sufficiently demonstrated that the appellant had platently breached the client-attorney relationship established by law and betrayed the respondent's faith and confidence in him.
Hope it will be helpful sir.