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‘Nature of allegations very serious’: SC junks bail plea by alleged ISIS sympathiser

“There is evidence against you. At this stage, there is no reason for us to discard those evidences. You have been working as ISIS agent.”

IANS | New Delhi |

The Supreme Court on Wednesday junked a bail plea by a man, arrested for allegedly collecting funds and recruiting people for international terror organisation ISIS.

A bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana told petitioner Ubed Mirza’s counsel that allegations against his client are very serious.

The bench, also comprising Justices Surya Kant and Hima Kohli, told senior advocate Siddhartha Dave, representing the petitioner: “There is evidence against you. At this stage, there is no reason for us to discard those evidences. You have been working as ISIS agent.”

The bench further added that petitioner’s WhatsApp chats pertain to killing people of other religions.

Dave argued that his client, who was a practising advocate in Surat, has been incarcerated for four years without charges having been framed after being arrested by Gujarat Police in 2017. He emphasised that this is in gross violation of his client’s fundamental rights.

Counsel submitted that the only allegation against his client was that he was recruiting some people for ISIS for money. It was further argued that Unlawful Activities Prevention Act has been invoked against the petitioner on the basis of Facebook posts and WhatsApp chats. Dave said not a single paise has been recovered from him and also his client never travelled to Syria.

However, the bench clarified it is not saying that bail cannot be granted, as UAPA has been invoked, but the nature of allegations is very serious.

The top court queried Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing Gujarat ATS, over the reason for delay in trial. Mehta submitted it may be due to accused or co-accused had challenged every order passed by the trial court.

After hearing arguments, the bench rejected the petition filed by advocate Farrukh Rasheed on behalf of the accused.

The bench said: “We are not inclined to grant bail. We direct the trial court to complete trial in one year.”

The accused was arrested on October 25, 2017. He was allegedly found discussing, advocating ISIS ideology on social media or sharing social media links with another accused, Kasim, who was allegedly planning to carry out a ‘lone wolf attack’ at a synagogue in Ahmedabad.