So it was quite surprising when all the male members—Basant Kumar, Ganga Prasad, Sudarshan Kumar, Kumar Mangalam (who inherited the A.V. Birla group) and Yashovardhan—united together on July 13. That day, Rajendra S. Lodha, a chartered accountant and the auditor for several Birla group companies, read out the will of the late Priyamvada Birla. The four-line document stated that M.P. Birla’s widow, who died on July 3 without a heir and controlled a business empire of Rs 5,000 crore apart from other properties, had given everything to a rank outsider, Lodha himself. The Birla family exploded in anger, challenging the perceived usurper of their family assets.
Predictably, on Wednesday, Birlas’ solicitors Khaitan & Co issued a notice to Lodha demanding a certified copy of the will and the right to inspect the original within the next 24 hours. Later, BK told the media the clan would legally oppose the will. "We’re sure the will is fabricated," said a BK group source. To prove this, the family will have to show evidence the will wasn’t drafted by Priyamvada, or that it’s not in her handwriting.