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Nizam lands in $7-lakh soup

Hyderabad, March 23: At 75 and many marriages later, the eighth nizam of Hyderabad is caught in a royal tangle.

Manolya Onur, the divorced third wife of Mukkaram Jah, today sought $750,000-plus property rights over three palaces in Hyderabad.

The family court in the old city posted the case to March 27 for another hearing.

Manolya’s main grouse is being denied Chiron Palace, which she claims the nizam had promised to give her. He has donated the palace to the state forest department.

Today’s legal proceedings were held in-camera on the request of the nizam’s counsel, Raghunandan Rao.

Jah did not appear in court today. In October 2005, a legal team was sent to Istanbul, where the nizam has been staying for the last two years, to record his statement.

Jah has denied having offered Chiron Palace to Manolya and said he had promised only a paltry amount as mehr. “It is not $750,000 as she claims,” the nizam’s counsel said.

Manolya, a former Miss Turkey, left the nizam some time in 1994 when he married Jameela Boularous from Morocco.

Three years later, she moved the family court for divorce and has been fighting for a settlement since then.

Jah, the heir apparent to one of the richest men in the world ' Osman Ali Pasha ' has conveyed to the court that he does not have the kind of money his former wife is demanding. “The nizam’s advocates say that the nizam does not have that much money to part with,” Manolya’s counsel Satyanarayan Prasad said.

Jah has also informed the court that he has been sending maintenance of Rs 1 lakh to Manolya and their two children every month.

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