Bombay high court grants bail to ‘Indian Mujahideen operative’ 9 years after arrest | mumbai news | Hindustan Times
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Bombay high court grants bail to ‘Indian Mujahideen operative’ 9 years after arrest

Court says there are grounds to believe Ansar Badshah is not a member of the terror group

mumbai Updated: Oct 07, 2017 22:53 IST
HT Correspondent
On July 26, 2008, a series of 21 bomb blasts rocked Ahmedabad within 70 minutes, killing 59 people and injuring more than 200.
On July 26, 2008, a series of 21 bomb blasts rocked Ahmedabad within 70 minutes, killing 59 people and injuring more than 200.(HT FILE)

The Bombay high court last week granted bail to Ansar Ahmed Badshah Shaikh, a suspected Indian Mujahideen operative. more than nine years after he was arrested for alleged links with the terror group’s key members, Mohammed Sadiq Israr Shaikh and Riyaz Bhatkal.

“Considering the material on record against the applicant (Shaikh), there are reasonable grounds for believing that the applicant is not guilty of the offences he is charged for,” said justice Revati Mohite-Dere, referring to the charge that he was a member of the group.

The judge also took into consideration that he has been in custody for more than nine years and the trial was yet to commence. The charges was framed on December 10, 2013 but, the chances of the trial resuming soon were bleak. Justice Mohite-Dere granted Shaikh bail on a personal bond of Rs 50,000 and local solvent sureties . He has also been asked to come to the crime branch on the first Saturday of every month until the trial is over and surrender his passport.

On July 26, 2008, 21 bomb blasts rocked Ahmedabad, killing 59 people. A few months prior to the blasts, newspapers and channels had received mails threatening a series of blasts. A few months later, in a Mumbai police crackdown, 22 people, including Shaikh, were arrested.

The judge noted that Shaikh was neither involved in the sending of the email nor was he linked to the blasts , and that he is being prosecuted only on the basis of his alleged links with the co-accused and for being a member of the group. The prosecution said Shaikh had been trained in Pakistan, and he had harboured Sadiq and Riyaz . The court, however, said Shaikh had not taken part in any criminal activity after he was said to have returned from Pakistan and also that on an odd evening Sadiq brought Riyaz to Shaikh’shome and both of them stayed for a night.