The special court Thursday allowed a plea by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) to conduct the trial of the alleged 26/11 attack mastermind Abu Jundal through video conferencing.
In its plea seeking trial through video conferencing, the NIA stated that the Maharashtra government feared that the suspected Lashkar-e-Toiba operative could either be killed or abducted while being brought to the Delhi court. Jundal is currently lodged at Mumbai’s Arthur Road Jail.
“After applying the findings/observations of the High Court, I am of the considered view that the application of NIA deserves to be allowed. I, therefore, allow the application of NIA under Section 273 of the CrPC for commencing the trial through video conferencing,” District Judge Amar Nath said.
The special court also directed the superintendent of the Arthur Road Prison to make arrangements for the trial by video conferencing. The court posted the matter for the next hearing on September 24.
The proceedings in the case were stalled in May, 2013, after Jundal was not produced before the court here despite issuance of repeated production warrants.
The NIA later moved a plea to exclude Jundal from personal appearance, citing a resolution passed by Maharashtra government in May 2013. Jundal’s counsel M S Akram, however, opposed the plea stating a trial via video conferencing would adversely impact his client’s defence.
In its chargesheet in the case, the NIA claimed that Jundal attempted to recruit men for the Lashkar-e-Toiba, and conspired to carry out terror attacks in India.