In a surprise move, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) produced 22-year-old alleged ISIS militant Areeb Majeed before the special NIA court on Wednesday, which remanded him in judicial custody till December 30. NIA had earlier obtained Areeb’s custody till December 22.
On Wednesday, NIA moved an application, stating it did not need Areeb’s custody any more, and that he could be moved to judicial custody in Arthur Road jail. Areeb’s lawyer Wahab Khan confirmed the move.
In its application, the defence had pleaded that Areeb should not be kept alone in jail. Majeed’s lawyer had also pleaded that prior permission of the court be taken and the defence counsel informed, if any agency wanted to interrogate Areeb further, or if he was transferred anywhere.
Majeed had also said in an application that he did not want to give any confessional statement, and in yet another plea, had asked for permission to meet his family. According to sources, all the applications were allowed by the court.
Areeb has been booked under sections 16, 18, 20 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and section 125 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
In the last week of May, Areeb, along with three of his friends Aman Tandel, Fahad Shaikh and Shahim Tanki, had left Mumbai for what was ostensibly a pilgrimage to Baghdad. They had later joined the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS). On November 20, his father, Dr Ejaz Majeed, received a call from Areeb, who told him he was alive and in Turkey. His father then met the NIA in Mumbai. Areeb was brought back to Mumbai on November 28, with NIA’s help.
Fahad, Shahim and Aman have also been shown as wanted in the case, as they were residents of the same area, met regularly, and conspired to commit terrorist acts against several countries.