The Delhi High Court on Friday granted Custody Parole to an accused, charged under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act for a period of 6 hours, to accompany his wife who is to undergo surgery.
A division bench of Justices Brijesh Sethi & JR Midha was hearing a plea seeking interim bail for a period of one month to the accused who is charged under Section 120-B IPC and 17 & 21 of UA (P) Act.
One of the grounds taken by the Appellant was that his wife had to undergo surgery for 'potential hysterectomy' because of uterine fibroids.
While rejecting the prayer for interim bail, the bench observed,
"....... though no case for interim bail is made out, however in the interest of justice, if the wife of the appellant undergoes surgery, the appellant is allowed custody parole for six hours (excluding the time of journey) on the date of operation of his wife so that he can meet her and be with her at the time of operation whenever the date for surgery is fixed by the doctors, which shall be verified by the Trial Court. During the custody parole, the NIA shall ensure that the police officers are deputed with him while the appellant is out of Jail".
The present plea emanates from an order passed by the ASJ (NIA), Patiala House Courts dismissing the bail application of the accused on the ground that the surgery that the wife of the appellant was required to undergo, was not a major one.
The petitioner had sought bail for a period of at least 30 days so that the appellant is available to organise funds, prepare his wife for surgery, accompany her at the time of surgery and to organize supply of blood and other ancillary activities related to surgery.
The Special Public Prosecutor (SPP) (NIA) opposed the appeal on the ground that the earlier order of bail was rightly dismissed and that there was no irregularity of illegality in the order dated July 6, 2020. He further submitted the appellant was involved in a serious offence of transferring funds by Hawala on various occasions as per instructions of Dubai based Pakistani national Mohammad Kamran, who in turn is connected with Shahid Mehmood, Dy. Chief of Falah-i-Insaniyat Foundation (FIF), Pakistan, which is a front NGO of terror group LeT.
"Mohd. Salman has connections with persons in various countries including Pakistan, UAE, Canada, Sweden, Croatia etc., which prima facie establishes that FIF is trying to attract group of sympathizers to its cause of creating unrest in India by collecting funds for terrorist activities in India. There is also possibility that if the accused is granted interim bail, he may flee from the territory of India with the help of the network base of terrorists and sleeper cells active in India and operating as per the instructions of the top leadership of Falahi-lnsaniyat Foundation (FIF), a proscribed terrorist organization and a frontal organization of internationally designated and proscribed terrorist organizations Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD) and Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT)., established by terrorist, Hafiz Saeed and a proscribed terrorist organization under the UA(P) Act," the SPP stated.
Counsel for the appellant however argued that the surgery to be performed upon the wife was a serious one and though the appellant did have some relatives, they were not residing with his family.
"Learned Trial Court has failed to appreciate the fact that surgery of the wife of the Appellant may lead to sterility, in which case the consent and physical presence of the Appellant, being her husband, before conducting surgery is a pre-requisite in terms of the Indian Medical Council (Professional Conduct, Etiquette and Ethics) Guidelines, 2002," the Counsel contended.
Further, he added that the Trial Court had also failed to appreciate that investigation qua the appellant already stood completed and the entire evidence was in the nature of documents or digital evidences. "Thus, the benefit of interim bail would not prejudice or hamper the investigation or trial of the case in any manner whatsoever," he said.
In this backdrop, the court observed that as per medical record prima facie at this stage, no major surgery is required for treating the appellant's wife.
Court further opined that imminent presence of the appellant, who is alleged to be a Hawala operator and is involved in a serious offence of transfer of funds to terrorist organization like LeT, is not required at the time of suggested surgery and is, therefore, not entitled to interim bail.
A system was being created vide which sleeper cells/ hide outs could be created at a later stage for carrying out act of terrorism at appropriate time or stage. Thus, keeping in view the gravity of offence as spelled out in charge-sheet, this court is not inclined to release the appellant on interim bail, the court noted.
The appellant was represented by Mr. Tanveer Ahmed Mir and Mr. Prabhav Ralli, Advocates.
The NIA was represented by Mr. Amit Sharma, Special Public Prosecutor with Mr. Abhishek Kumar Bagaria, Senior Public Prosecutor.
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