Batla House encounter case convict Shahzad Ahmed, who is serving life imprisonment, has been granted one-day custody parole by the Delhi High Court to attend his sister’s wedding at Azamgarh in Uttar Pradesh on February 9.
A bench of Justice Hima Kohli and Justice Vinod Goel ordered that the petitioner, Ahmed, be taken in “proper police escort to attend the marriage of his sister on February 9, between 10.00 am to 2.00 pm, excluding the time that shall be taken for completing the journey from Delhi to Azamgarh and back”.
“In case of need, the in-charge of the escorting police party shall be entitled to keep the petitioner overnight in lock-up at the local police station, during the course of journey,” it said.
The bench further said that the expenses for purchasing Ahmed’s and the police party’s train tickets shall be initially borne by the jail authorities, to be reimbursed by the convict.
Ahmed (29) had moved the High Court seeking one-week parole to enable him to attend his sister’s wedding, scheduled from February 6 to 12.
Additional Standing Counsel Rajesh Mahajan, appearing for the police, opposed the plea and said Ahmed is a “hardcore terrorist”, who had escaped from Batla House, where a shootout had taken place between Special Cell officers and men allegedly involved in serial blasts in the capital.
Mahajan contended that there are five cases registered against the convict in connection with the serial blasts, which had taken place in different parts of Delhi in 2008 and had resulted in the death of 26 persons and injury to 135.
He submitted that if the court is inclined to grant any relief to the convict, then a time schedule may be fixed in such a manner that they can return during the day.
While extending relief to the convict, the bench noted that in January 2017, the trial court had granted him custody parole to enable him to attend the wedding ceremonies of his other sister in UP.
Ahmed is one of the alleged Indian Mujahideen operative involved in the September 13, 2008, blasts, who was traced and arrested in Lucknow in 2010. He is also among the 13 suspected terrorists facing trial in the 2008 serial blasts case.
He was sentenced to life imprisonment by a sessions court on July 30, 2013, for his role in the September 19, 2008, encounter at the Batla House flat in Jamiass Nagar, which led to death of Special Cell inspector M C Sharma.
The trial court had held Ahmed guilty on charges of murder, attempting to cause death and various other provisions of the Indian Penal Code and the Arms Act.