The Judicial Magistrate First Class (JMFC) court in Surat on Tuesday sent a third accused — after a Congress leader and his aide — to judicial custody after a non-bailable warrant was issued against him in a case related to the riots that broke out in Surat following the demolition of Babri mosque in 1992. A total of 26 accused were arrested earlier by police for rioting as well as under Terrorist and Disruptive Activity (TADA) charges.
The third accused is Shakeel Shamshuddin Ansari, a resident of Unn in Surat and father of seven children. He sells bakery items on truck in Unn area in Surat. Earlier he was residing in Limbayat area.
On March 15, Udhna police reached his house in Unn area and informed him that a non-bailable warrant has been issued against him by the Surat district court in a rioting case. Shakeel accompanied the police to the JMFC court on Sunday from where he was sent to judicial custody, after his bail application was rejected.
A few days ago, Congress party municipal councillor and party whip in SMC, Ikbal Belim, and his friend Rahim Rana alias Pratapsingh Rana, were sent to central jail under judicial custody as per Indian Penal Code sections under which they were charged. According to the case, after the demolition of Babri Mosque in Ayodhya in 1992, riots broke out at Rajeev Nagar area in Surat. Several houses, vehicles and shops were damaged and set on fire. Udhna police registered a case under IPC sections 143, 147, 148, 149, 436, 437, 120 (B) and TADA sections 5 and 7, and arrested 26 persons, including Ikbal Belim, Rahim Rana and Shakeel Ansari.
Defence lawyer Yusuf Shaikh said, “It is an old case in which 26 accused were arrested and later bailed by Udhna police earlier. However, the accused were not appearing in the court and the case was dormant. The Surat court recently opened all the dormnat cases and started issuing a non-bailable warrant for those who were not appearing for the hearing.” He added that bail application has been filed with the sessions court and the hearing will take place on Wednesday in Surat district chief court,” he added.
Udhna police said they were trying to find out all others among the 26 accused as non-bailable warrants were issued against them.
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