Gangster Abu Salem now plans to move the European Union (EU) against the government of Portugal, which has not taken steps to cancel his extradition to India despite an order from its supreme court to do so.
On June 27, Salem was attacked inside Taloja central jail in Navi Mumbai by inmate Devendra Jagtap, who is behind bars in connection with the murder of advocate Shahid Azmi.
Following this attack, Salem’s Portugal-based lawyer Manuel Ferreira obtained permission from court to speak to him on the future course of action and met him on Monday.
Advocate Saba Qureshi, who represents Salem in cases in India, said: “Ferreira represented Salem in Portugal courts and he had come to see and check the status of the cases against Salem as well as look the circumstances and security issues in jail for Salem.”
After meeting the gangster, Ferreira said: “We spoke to him for two hours.
He is very depressed. We have come to the conclusion that we will move EU against the Portugal government for not taking steps to cancel the Salem’s extradition even after an order from Portugal’s supreme court.”
“Everyone has a right to life. We will not wait for another attack and we have decided to take steps rather than wait for the governments to decide on the issues,” Ferreira added.
The Portuguese lawyer said the cases in India for which Salem was extradited have dragged on when they should have been expedited.
“The major problem is the no decision for years by the government. No decision is also a bad decision and injustice. We can’t do anything until the authorities or the judiciary decides on the issue, but we have decided to take further steps,” Ferreira said.
Approaching the EU was the “last resort”, Qureshi said.
“Both the Indian and the Portuguese governments have not followed nor executed the court orders. The Portuguese courts have ordered the cancellation of Salem’s extradition, but no steps have been taken by Portugal’s government to execute the order so we will move EU.”