The Bombay High Court on Tuesday upheld a particular court docket’s order granting bail to 27-year-old Areeb Majeed, accused of getting hyperlinks with the Islamic State (ISIS) terror community.
A division bench of Justices S.S. Shinde and Manish Pitale disposed of an enchantment filed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), difficult the particular court docket’s order granting bail to alleged ISIS member Majeed.
In March final 12 months, Majeed was granted bail by a particular NIA court docket which famous the tempo of the trial was sluggish and in addition on the bottom that the prosecution had not succeeded in proving its prima facie case in opposition to the accused.
The HC stated whereas it was upholding the decrease court docket’s order granting bail to Majeed on the bottom of pendency of trial, it was quashing the observations made by it (decrease court docket) on deserves of the case.
The order stated whereas Majeed’s case on sluggish trial seems to be on a “firm footing”, the particular NIA courts statement with regard to no prima facie case established at this stage was “flawed”.
The HC famous that the appropriate to honest and speedy trial is a constitutional proper and if after an extended and prolonged trial the accused is discovered to be not responsible, then the variety of years spent by her or him as undertrial can by no means be given again to them.
It stated in instances the place an individual is booked for severe and heinous offences, courts are required to carry out a balancing act, in order to make sure that a “golden mean” is reached between the rights of the person and people of the society at massive.
The HC bench in its order stated Majeed has been charged underneath provisions of the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and is accused of getting returned to India with an intention to perform terrorist actions right here.
“However, no death was caused by the alleged plans hatched by the respondent (Majeed), since he was arrested the moment he landed in India,” the court docket stated.
Majeed has been in custody for greater than six years now, the excessive court docket stated, including the method of inspecting round 50 witnesses has taken greater than 5 years and admittedly, there are 107 extra witnesses to be examined.
“Therefore, there is no likelihood of the trial being completed within a reasonable time in the near future,” the court docket stated.
The bench, whereas quashing and setting apart the decrease court docket’s observations on no prima facie case being established, stated it was unusual the NIA court docket held that at this stage the prosecution had not succeeded to show prima facie case on the premise of examination 49 witnesses.
“The findings rendered in favour of the respondent (Majeed) in the impugned judgment (lower court order) appear to be flawed,” the HC stated in its order.
“We are of the opinion that considering evidence of 49 witnesses already examined, when 107 witnesses remained to be examined, was an irrelevant consideration taken into account by the NIA court,” the bench stated.
It famous that Majeed was an informed particular person and in addition comes from an informed household, therefore his launch on bail with stringent circumstances imposed shall not be dangerous to the society at massive and it might not adversely have an effect on the trial.
The bench directed Majeed to furnish Rs 1 lakh as surety and in addition directed him to keep together with his household at Kalyan in neighbouring Thane district.
Majeed has to seem earlier than the police in Kalyan twice on daily basis for the primary two months and as soon as a day for the following two months.
Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh argued that there are over 100 witnesses but to be examined within the trial in opposition to Majeed and therefore, the NIA court docket ought not to have jumped to the conclusion that prima facie case was not established by the prosecution.
The NIA’s case was that Majeed together with three others had travelled to Syria ostensibly for pilgrimage, however by no means visited pilgrimage websites and as a substitute, joined the ISIS with an intention to bask in jihadi actions.
The probing company had additionally claimed that Majeed returned to India with an intention of finishing up terrorist actions, together with an assault on the headquarters of the Mumbai police.
Majeed was arrested in November 2014 underneath provisions of the UAPA and the Indian Penal Code for allegedly waging a warfare in opposition to the nation and different expenses.
He was granted bail in March final 12 months by a particular NIA court docket.
The NIA later approached the HC, difficult the decrease court docket’s order.
The HC had then in an interim order stayed operation of the bail granted, pending listening to of the NIA’s enchantment.
Hence, Majeed continued to stay in jail.
While opposing the NIA’s enchantment, Majeed argued that he had gone to Syria solely to assist individuals and denied all expenses levelled in opposition to him.
He had advised the HC that it was his father who contacted the NIA and different authorities businesses to carry him again to India.
He had additionally argued that the trial within the case was progressing slowly and there was no chance of it being accomplished within the close to future.