Godfrey Phillips Inheritance Dispute Intensifies: Executive Director Accuses Mother of Orchestrating Attack

Sameer Modi

New Delhi: The ongoing property dispute within Godfrey Phillips, a prominent name in the tobacco industry, has taken a dramatic turn. Sameer Modi, the executive director of the company, has accused his mother, Bina Modi, of orchestrating an attack against him. This allegation has further deepened the family feud over the late K.K. Modi’s ₹11,000 crore inheritance.

Background and Allegations

Godfrey Phillips, known for its cigarette brands like Red Square, Red and White, Cavender’s, Stellar, and Focus, also manufactures and sells Marlboro cigarettes in India. However, behind the scenes, a bitter battle over the company’s wealth has been unfolding. Lalit Modi’s brother, Sameer, has now filed a complaint with the Delhi Police, claiming that he was physically assaulted by his mother’s personal bodyguard and several directors of Godfrey Phillips.

The Incident

According to Sameer Modi, the incident occurred when he attempted to attend a scheduled board meeting at the company’s office in Jasola, Delhi. Bina Modi’s personal security officer (PSO) blocked his entry, leading to a confrontation. The situation escalated, resulting in Sameer’s index finger being broken during the scuffle. Despite the injury, he managed to attend the board meeting before seeking medical attention.

Serious Consequences

In his complaint lodged at Sarita Vihar Police Station, Sameer Modi expressed concern about the severity of his injury. His right index finger is now broken into two pieces, requiring surgical intervention with a screw and wire. Doctors have informed him that his finger will never fully regain its function, leaving him with a permanent impairment.

The Larger Inheritance Dispute

The inheritance dispute revolves around the distribution of assets worth ₹11,000 crore following K.K. Modi’s passing in 2019. The family’s nearly 50% shareholding in listed Godfrey Phillips, valued at over ₹5,500 crore, is at the center of the conflict. Additionally, shares in other Modi group firms contribute to the substantial inheritance. Samir Modi had previously challenged his mother’s handling of affairs in the Supreme Court, and the legal battle remains unresolved.

Sameer Modi

Company’s Response

A spokesperson for Godfrey Phillips refuted Sameer Modi’s allegations, calling them “entirely false and atrocious.” The company maintains that the incident occurred outside the boardroom during an audit committee meeting, and CCTV footage supports their claim. The dispute continues to cast a shadow over the company’s future.