The Gujarat High Court Tuesday issued a notice to National Investigation Agency (NIA) on a bail petition moved by Naeem Ramodia, who is languishing in jail for allegedly planning ISIS-inspired “lone-wolf” attacks in Gujarat. Ramodia has said in the petition that the FIR and other materials against him say he is an “ordinary misguided youth”.
Naeem and his brother Vaseem have been chargesheeted for conspiring ISIS-style attacks in the state against “kafirs” (non-believers). He has said in the petition that he was so “fearful and frightened” he could not have done the crime alleged against him and his brother, Vaseem. Therefore, the bail should be granted.
The division bench of Justice M R Shah and Justice A Y Kogje issued the notice, which is returnable on March 12. Naeem moved the High Court through advocate M M Shaikh after his bail application was rejected by a special NIA court in November last year.
The petition states, “The allegation made against the applicant and co-accused appears that they are misguided young persons having no criminal antecedents. It is in the interest of the applicant and the nation that he may be kept away from other criminals and sent to reform house for psychological treatment for some time.”
The petition states that Naeem is “young” and “married.” “…His father was stenographer to vice-chancellor of Saurashtra University and umpire of Saurashtra Cricket Association…having respect in the society,” it states. In November last year, the special NIA court had rejected the bail plea with the observation that prima facie, a case had been established against the accused.
The case was first probed by the Gujarat Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) and later was handed over to the NIA for further probe. The NIA, in its chargesheet, stated that the Gujarat ATS had received “credible information” that “few youths from Gujarat are being radicalised by Mufti Abdus Sami Qasmi alias Samiullah.