Two members of Ejaz Lakdawala gang, who spent five years in prison on charges of firing at a businessman to extort ransom money, were on Friday granted bail by the Bombay High Court.
Justice V M Kanade granted them bail on the ground that their appeal has not yet come up for hearing although the duo had served five-year sentence awarded to them by a designated Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) Court.
Nasir Pocchi and Mohammed Khalid were granted bail for the sum of Rs 5000 each, their lawyer Sashan Kunjuraman said.
Nasir and Mohammed were sentenced to five years' imprisonment and awarded fine of Rs five lakh and Rs ten lakh respectively. The duo were also sentenced to undergo further one year jail in case they did not pay the fine.
As both of them did not pay the fine they had to undergo one year jail term. However, the convicts moved the High Court seeking bail as their appeals did not come up for hearing despite the lapse of conviction period of five years.
Nasir and Mohammed were convicted for opening fire at a businessman, Nijas Panjwani, owner of an electronic shop in suburban Versova. However, the victim escaped unhurt.
Panjwani had received a threat call on his cell phone from a person identifying himself as Ejaz Lakdawala and asking him to Rs 50 lakh extortion money. As he refused to pay, two persons on a motorbike came to his shop on February 23, 2005, and fired at him. An FIR and the two were arrested.