A designated TADA court on Tuesday rejected jailed gangster Abu Salem's plea to stay the 1993 Mumbai serial bomb blast trial and proceedings in the Pradeep Jain murder case on the ground that a Portuguese court has terminated his extradition.
TADA judge G A Sanap, while rejecting Salem's plea, observed that the Indian government has challenged the high court order in the Supreme Court of Portugal and until a final order was passed there, the proceedings in Indian courts could not be stayed.
Salem had also pleaded in the same petition that the jail authorities be directed not to produce him in any court till the conclusion of proceedings in Lisbon.
He argued that the trial in cases registered against him cannot go on after the Portuguese Court order terminating his extradition.
According to his lawyer Saba Qureshi, the Portugal high court order had said that there was a breach of agreement by India as it slapped offences which attracted death penalty. Capital punishment has been abolished in Portugal, she said.
The CBI, on the other hand, argued that though the Portugal high court had terminated extradition of Salem, the government of India had challenged the order in the Supreme Court of that country and until a final order was passed by the apex court the proceedings against the gangster in Indian courts could not be stayed.
The judge concurred with the CBI and rejected Salem's plea for stay of trial in cases against him.
Salem, a key accused in the 1993 bomb blast case, and his girlfriend, Monica Bedi, were extradited to India on November 11, 2005, after a marathon legal process in Portugal lasting three years.