Bhopal encounter: Despite court order, barred from meeting SIMI men, says lawyer

Jail Superintendent Dinesh Nargave said he was only following procedure and did not stop the advocate from meeting his clients.

Written by Milind Ghatwai | Bhopal | Updated: November 13, 2016 2:06 am
simi, bhopal, bhopal jailbreak, simi activists, simi encounter, simi activists encounter, india news, indian express, After the encounter on October 31, Alam had alleged that the remaining SIMI members were being tortured by jail authorities and sought court’s permission to visit them in jail. (PTI photo)

DESPITE A favourable court order, the lawyer of SIMI activists could not meet them at Bhopal Central Jail on Saturday because the jail authorities wanted him to identify himself as a relative of the undertrials, advocate Parvez Alam said.

“They wanted me to sign a form identifying myself as their relative. I wanted to strike down ‘relative’ and replace it with ‘clients’ but they did not let me do so,’’ Alam said. “I am not related to them; they are my clients.’’

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Jail Superintendent Dinesh Nargave said he was only following procedure and did not stop the advocate from meeting his clients.

Alam filed a complaint against the jail officials at Gandhinagar Police Station and also apprised the court that he could not meet his clients. The lawyer said he has requested the court to suo motu initiate contempt proceedings. The matter will be heard on November 17.

An additional district judge had on Friday rejected a revision plea filed by the Madhya Pradesh government to enable Alam to visit five of 21 SIMI activists lodged in the jail.

The court of chief judicial magistrate, Bhopal, had on Wednesday allowed Alam to meet his clients for 20 minutes but the government challenged it through a revision plea. The government argued that it was in violation of jail manual, a plea ADJ Ramkumar Choube struck down on Friday.

Meanwhile, Alam also objected to a video posted by a local newspaper on its website which allegedly shows a hospital staffer clicking selfies with bodies of the SIMI activists in the X-ray room on October 31, soon after they were shot in an encounter near Bhopal. Audio and video clips of the encounter had also surfaced.

Director of Medico Legal Institute Dr Ashok Sharma said he was not aware of the video but said it may have been filmed at Hamidia Hospital.