KATHMANDU: The property dispute in the former royal family has taken a legal turn.

This is the first legal dispute to be registered since the nation was declared a Republic.

The then prince Dhirendra Shah’s second wife Jaya Shah Pandey today filed a case against her step daughters in the Kathmandu District Court, seeking a share of her property.

Her attorney, Diwakar Raj Pandey, registered the case against her step daughters Puja Rajya Laxmi Shahi, Sitashma Rajya Laxmi Shah and Dilasha Rajya Laxmi Rana. The plea noted that the aggrieved was forced to move court since the respondents had maintained a studied silence all along.

The plaintiff has accused the trio of depriving her right, and sharing the paternal property among them. Jaya also pleaded with the court to declare the transfer of her late husband’s property null and void.

His second widow claimed that she got married to Dhirendra on April 22, 1987, at the Dakshinkali Temple in the presence of several royal family members.

According to her, he took Shirley Greaney Shaha as his third wife. Dhirendra had a daughter — Ushana Shah — from his third marriage.

Shirley Greaney Shaha, however, cannot stake claim to his property since she separated from him many years ago.

Jaya claimed that Dhirendra was stripped off his royal title following dispute in his family. He was compelled to lead a commoner’s life for his failure to live up to the royal decorum. Dhirendra reportedly had a daughter, Shreya Shah, from his second marriage. Shreya was born on June 16, 1988.

Jaya maintained that she had been living abroad on the advice of her husband. She allegedly faced death threat from Dhirendra’s first wife Prekshya Rajya Laxmi Shah and a few other royal members.

She now lives in Belmont City, USA, along with Shreya.

Dhirendra, the third son of late King Mahendra, was killed in the royal massacre, along with the then King Birendra’s family members, in June, 2001. Altogether nine royal members had lost their lives in the tragedy.

What is at stake?

KATHMANDU: Jaya’s legal counsel Surya KC Dhirendra owned 10 ropanis of land at Dhumbarahi in the capital and 65 per cent share in Hotel Shahenshah. He also owned Jivankunj, a palace. KC maintained that the ex-prince had huge landed property in Nepalgunj, Pokhara, Hetauda and Chitwan. — HNS