The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) will decide on the travel restrictions imposed on family members of Iqbal Kaskar, younger brother of fugitive gangster Dawood Ibrahim.
Union government lawyer, Poornima Kantharia, informed the Bombay High Court on Tuesday that the MEA would hear Kaskar’s family on Jan 18.
Iqbal’s wife Rizwana (42), the couple’s three daughters, and two sons had moved an appeal before the MEA after the Mumbai regional passport office rejected their plea for fresh passports in November 2009.
The family had sought fresh passports as their passports bore the remark ‘only for travel between India and the United Arab Emirates’. The remark, introduced on the MEA’s instructions, had restricted their international travel.
When the MEA failed to act on their appeals, the family had challenged the remark before the high court saying none of them was ever involved in any criminal activities and there was no reason for introducing travel restrictions on them.
The court on Tuesday disposed of the petition with instructions to the MEA to pass an appropriately reasoned order after hearing the family.
Kaskar was deported to India in 2003 and tried under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act in the Sara-Sahara illegal construction case.
Kaskar was charged for conniving with certain Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation officials and erecting an illegal construction on a land reserved for the Central Public Works Department near Crawford Market.
He was eventually acquitted in June 2007 for want of evidence. The state government has filed an appeal before the high court against his acquittal.
Kaskar’s passport was impounded soon after he landed at Mumbai international airport in 2003 and his application for issuing a fresh passport was rejected last year. Kaskar has filed a separate petition for release of his passport.
“We have sought release of the passport as he has been acquitted in the Sara Sahara case and there is no other case pending against him,” said Kaskar’s lawyer Jagdish Shetty.
Kaskar’s petition seeking the release of his passport is likely to come up for hearing on Friday.