February 13, 2021 2:57:18 am
AN ACCUSED in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts was granted permission by a special court to visit a cemetery to offer condolence prayers for his twin brother, who passed away on Tuesday.
Mohammed Farooq Yasin Mansoor, who was extradited from the United Arab Emirates in 2018, had submitted a plea before the special Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act (TADA) court on Wednesday.
He stated that as an elder brother, he had to carry out religious prayers at the cemetery where his twin brother, Mohammed Ahmed, was buried.
In an application filed through his lawyer Farhana Shah, the accused had also sought permission to attend prayers at his residence with police escorts. He further sought that the charges of the police guards be waived of due to his poor financial condition.
Special public prosecutor Deepak Salvi raised an objection and submitted that since the accused had been absconding for many years, such permission should not be granted.
He further submitted that if the plea is allowed, the escort charges should not be waived of.
The court initially said that given that Farooq is facing severe allegations and has been absconding for a long time, his plea seeking permission to visit both the cemetery and his residence cannot be allowed. “It would certainly create an excessive strain on the escort party to maintain security,” the court said.
However, the court later allowed him to visit the cemetery, while rejecting his plea seeking to visit his home. “Considering the mishaps on the applicant, the grief of losing his brother and the applicant’s detention for a long period in custody as UTP (undertrial prisoner), the escort party fees can be relieved,” the court said.
Farooq has been lodged at Arthur Road jail in Mumbai since his extradition in 2018. The trial against him is yet to begin.
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