A special MCOCA court presiding over the 2006 Aurangabad arms haul case has directed defence lawyers to argue on fresh charges, including a charge of collecting arms to wage war against the government, likely to be framed against the 22 accused.
Special judge Shrikant L Anekar observed that the court has “carefully gone through the final charge sheet filed” and after going through the prosecution’s claim on the nature of conspiracy, the court plans to include acts like striking terror, overawe the government by means of criminal force etc against the accused under section 121(a) (Punishment for waging, or attempting to wage war, or abetting waging of war, against the Government of India) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The charge sheet till now only included charges under section 120 (b) for conspiracy. “It seems that relevant sections are missing,” the order read.
In May 2006, the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) said it had seized 43 kg of RDX, 50 hand grenades, 16 AK-47 rifles and over 3,000 bullets from Chandaud in Aurangabad.
Moreover, the judge also maintained that as a necessary corollary and in the light of the case the prosecution put forth, charges under Section 122 (Collecting arms, etc., with intention of waging war against the Government of India) of the IPC “also seems missing”.
Defence lawyer Abdul Wahab Khan, however, argued that the court is impartial and the court cannot frame a new charge unless the prosecution gets it sanctioned from the concerned authorities. The court is likely to hear the arguments on the proposed alteration of charges on August 6.