August 3, 2021 2:57:40 am
THE NIA has sought another extension to file a chargesheet in the Ambani terror scare case.
In an application filed before the special court recently, the central agency has sought another 30 days to file the chargesheet against dismissed policemen Sachin Waze, Riyazuddin Kazi, Vinayak Shinde, Sunil Mane and Naresh Gaur.
The NIA has said in its plea that it is not possible to complete the “enormous task” of investigation and submission of the final report against the five this month as five more men were arrested subsequently.
Special Judge Prashant R Sitre had on June 9 granted the NIA an extension of 60 days to file the chargesheet after the agency cited grounds, including restrictions owing to the Covid-19 pandemic, voluminous data and the accused being “highly influential” former policemen.
Since the accused are booked under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, the NIA can file the chargesheet against them in up to 180 days. The agency, however, requires to seek an extension from the court to file the chargesheet and extend their custody.
“…The extended period of investigation was utilised in the investigation against newly arrested five co-accused persons and detailed analysis of seized documents collected during the investigation, which are voluminous in nature, hence a detailed probe for further analysis needs sufficient time,” the NIA has said.
The NIA had arrested retired cop Pradeep Sharma and four others alleging that they were linked to the conspiracy to plant explosives in an SUV parked near the residence of industrialist Mukesh Ambani on February 25 and the subsequent murder of a man linked to the vehicle.
The NIA has said that the larger conspiracy in the case is spread over several parts of the country and the investigating officers are carrying out investigations by visiting the scenes of crime, tracing seized documents and material from the accused as well as recording statements of witnesses.
The NIA has claimed that the conspiracy was planned with an intent to strike terror in the minds of people in Mumbai and Maharashtra and the suspects were in touch with police personnel and others during the alleged offence.
The special court will hear the accused on the NIA plea before deciding on whether the extension can be allowed. If the plea is allowed, the NIA can file the chargesheet in the case in September.
Meanwhile, apart from Waze, other accused including Kazi and Mane have also filed pleas seeking default bail. Their applications state that they should be released on bail since the NIA did not file the chargesheet within 90 days. All the 10 accused are currently in judicial custody.
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