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NIA moves Delhi HC seeking death sentence for Yasin Malik

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Hearing is to be held on May 29

Srinagar: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has approached the Delhi High Court seeking a death sentence for Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) Chief and Kashmiri separatist leader Yasin Malik.

The petition is listed for hearing on May 29 before a Division Bench of Justices Siddharth Mridul and Talwant Singh.

Malik was sentenced to life imprisonment by a special NIA court in a terror funding case in May 2022. He had pleaded guilty in the case.

The NIA had demanded capital punishment for Malik before the trial court as well.

However, the prayer was refused by the special court stating that the death penalty should be awarded only in exceptional cases “where the crime by its nature shocks the collective consciousness of the society”.

Malik was convicted of offences under Section 120B, 121, 121A of Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Sections 13 and 15 of UAPA read with 120B of the IPC besides Sections 17, 18, 20, 38 and 39 of UAPA.

NIA in its appeal stated that the crime committed by such dreaded terrorists, where due to their ‘act of war’, the nation has lost its valuable soldiers and has perpetrated irreparable grief not only to the family members of the soldiers but to the entire nation.

NIA stated that the respondent/accused over decades has been indulging and spearheading terrorist activities in the valley and with the help of dreaded foreign terrorist organisations, having interest inimical to India, has been masterminding, planning, engineering and executing armed rebellion in the valley in an attempt to usurp the sovereignty and integrity of a part of India.

NIA in its appeal before Delhi HC further stated that the offences committed by the respondent accused are ex-facie acts of “external aggression”, brazenly planned and executed by “acts of waging war against the nation” whereby “internal disturbance” was created through raising and using trained armed militia within the state and by helping trained terrorist, raised in enemy states, to infiltrate the borders of India to participate and catalyse such internal disturbances. 

NIA stated that submitted that if such dreaded terrorists are not given capital punishment only on the ground that they have pleaded guilty, then the same will result in complete erosion of the sentencing policy of the country and will result in the creation of a device, whereby, such dreaded terrorist after indulging, waging and spearheading an “act of war against the state”, in case caught, would have a way out to avoid capital punishment.

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