Press Trust of india

Delhi HC dismisses plea of Salauddin’s son

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New Delhi, May 31: The Delhi High Court today rejected a plea by Syed Shahid Yousuf, son of Hizb-ul-Mujahideen supremo Syed Salahuddin, challenging an order dismissing his bail in a “terror funding” case.

A bench of Justices S Muralidhar and I S Mehta upheld two orders of a trial court, including one by which his plea for statutory bail was rejected, saying there was no illegality in them.

“This court concurs with the trial court that once the period for completion of investigation stood extended up to April 21, 2018, the occasion for the appellant (Yousuf) to file an application for statutory bail under Section 167 Cr PC did not arise unless there was a failure by the NIA to file a charge-sheet before April 21, 2018,” the bench said.

42-year-old Yousuf was posted as Agricultural Assistant in Budgam of central Kashmir when he was arrested by the NIA on October 24 last year. The bail plea of Yousuf, currently in judicial custody, was dismissed by the trial court here on March 07.

The high court was informed by the counsel for the accused that his application seeking regular bail was pending before the special court here.

The bench clarified that nothing said in its today’s order will affect the independent consideration of such bail application on its merits by the special court.

Yousuf had said he was entitled to statutory bail and the special court had erred in denying him the relief in its March 07 order. He had also challenged the special court’s February 05 order allowing the NIA’s plea for extension of time up to 180 days to complete investigation and remanding the accused to judicial custody.

The NIA had earlier alleged that the accused had links with proscribed militant organisations like Hizb-ul-Mujahideen. It had alleged that the case was registered on the basis of information about funds from Pakistan being sent to Jammu and Kashmir through hawala channels via Delhi “to spread terrorism”.

The NIA had in 2011 arrested several persons, including Ghulam Mohammad Bhat with Rs 21.2 lakh, and alleged that Yousuf was “one of the several Indian contacts of Bhat” who had been in touch with him for receiving money transfer codes.

It had alleged that Yousuf’s involvement was found in collecting funds from a militant outfit in Saudi Arabia and from other accused on directions of his father Mohammad Yousuf Shah alias Syed Salahuddin, the “supreme commander” of the Hizb-Ul-Mujahideen.

Salahuddin was declared a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist” by the US Department of State in June last year.

The NIA has claimed that Yousuf has received a total of nearly Rs 4.5 lakh through eight international wire transfers. It had also registered two other cases related to “terror funding” — one in November 2011 and the other in May 2017. It had filed a charge-sheet against 10 people including Salahuddin in the April 2011 case.

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