Amit Shah accuses Samajwadi Party and Congress for weakening India's fight against terrorism as 4 out of 14 got convicted in cases SP Govt wanted to drop

Posted on 22nd Feb 2022 07:36 am by manoj sachdeva

The Samajwadi Party government of Akhilesh Yadav, a member of the Samajwadi Party (SP), came to power in 2012 in UP. It promised to withdraw terror cases in its election manifesto. The SP government decided that 14 of these cases would be withdrawn, in which 19 people - all from UP or West Bengal -- were being accused.

After hearing Ranjana Agnihotri's PIL and five other lawyers, the Allahabad High Court stopped the state government from moving. Hari Shankar Jain, Agnihotri’s lawyer, stated that the SP government had filed a Special Leave Petition in the Supreme Court to contest the High Court's stay. It is still pending.

The trial in eight of 14 terror cases was halted by the judge giving the benefit of doubt to the accused or because of a lack of evidence. The courts convicted four other defendants. One case is still being tried, while the trial in the other is ongoing. In the final case, the accused remains on the run.

Below is the list of 14 cases:

Cases 1 and 2

Accused: Yakoob

Yakoob, a Lucknow resident, was arrested by the UP Police on June 21, 2007 for allegedly supplying RDX to different parts of the nation. The police claimed that they had found explosives in Yakoob's possession, and that he was an operative for a terror group -- HuJI. Along with Jalaluddin and Naushad Hafiz, he was arrested in terror cases. These cases were filed at Hussainganj Police Station, Lucknow.

The SP government wanted to drop Yakoob's charge.

Eight years later, on August 6, 2015, a Lucknow court exonerated Yakoob along with the two other defendants on the benefit of doubt.

Cases 3&4

Accused: Nasir Hussain

In June 2007, Nasir Hussain (a Bijnor resident) was taken into custody from a Lucknow hotel. According to police, he had RDX and detonators in his possession. He was also subject to two FIRs at Naka Hindola police station in Lucknow.

A Lucknow court released Nasir from jail on March 20, 2014.

Syed Ahsan Abbas Rizvi (his lawyer) had stated that Swami Shivanand, a seer who runs an ashram within Uttarakhand's Tehri Garhwal, made a statement before the court, stating that Nasir was part of a construction team at his Ashram when the police "picked him" on June 19, 2007. He said that the police theory was incorrect as his record indicated that he was taken from Lucknow on June 21. The court referred to Shivanand’s statement and the claim of the police, and said that when two possibilities exist, the advantage of doubt must be given to the accused.

Case 5

Accused by Mohammad Kaleem and Syed Abdul Mobeen

Two men were arrested in connection to a blast which occurred near Sahkarita Bhawan, Lucknow, on August 15, 2000. Although there were no casualties, the blast caused a crack in a wall and shattered some windows.

Two were charged with terror at Qaiserbagh Police Station, Lucknow. Residents of UP are Mohammad Kaleem, and Syed Abdul Mobeen.

The trial court granted the three defendants the benefit of the doubt on April 10, 2014.

Case 6

Accused: Mukhtar Hussain, Mohammad Ali Akbar, Ajijur Rehman, Naushad Hafiz & Noor Islam

Five undertrials were charged with allegedly pronouncing anti-national slogans. They were brought before Lucknow's court on August 13, 2008. Other than Naushad, all were West Bengal residents. They were arrested for planning a bomb in Lucknow in 2007.

The SP government sought to withdraw the case in which they were charged with raising anti-national slogans. All five were acquitted by a Lucknow court in the sloganeering matter on January 14, 2016. Later, they were also acquitted of the terror case.

Case 7

Convicted: Javed, Maqsood and Taj Mohammad

On August 13, 2002, Maqsood and Taj Mohammad were arrested by Rampur police for allegedly leaking Indian military secrets into Pakistan. They claimed they had given away crucial information about the army's movements and that they had found military installation maps for several locations, including Dehradun, Meerut and Meerut from their possessions. Three of the four were also cited by police under the Prevention of Terrorism Act. All four of the suspects are Rampur residents. After POTA was invoked, the case was transferred to Moradabad.

The SP government decided to drop charges against Maqsood Javed and Taj Mohammad.

The court released the four defendants for lack of evidence on January 20, 2014.

Case 8

Ahmed Hasan is being charged

Ahmed Hasan, a truck driver and Wasif, were both arrested in Bijnor, June 21st 2002 for allegedly spying on Pakistani agencies. They were charged with various offenses, including Officials Secret Act.

The SP government proposed dropping the case against Hasan.

Hasan was released last month. His lawyer Nisar Ahmed stated that Hasan was acquitted.

Case 9

Accused: A juvenile

Four police officers were hurt in an explosion in Arya Nagar, Kanpur, on August 14, 2000. Ten people, including a juvenile were arrested under the Explosives Act on charges of attempted murder, sedition and waging war on the state. In 2005, one of the suspects was killed in an encounter in Kashmir.

The eight major accused were acquitted by a Kanpur court for lack of evidence. The trial of the juvenile remaining accused continued. SP wanted to withdraw the case against the juvenile.

According to Azizul Rehan (the juvenile's lawyer), the trial is still pending before Juvenile Justice Board. The statements of 12 prosecution witnesses have been reviewed so far.

Case 10

Accused: Imtiyaz Ali

Imtiyaz, a Jhansi resident, was taken into custody in Kanpur in September 2009, for allegedly spying on the intelligence agency of Pakistan.

The police claimed that he was on their payroll and was paid Rs 5,000 per month by the ISI. The police claimed that he had eight SIM cards and documents with details about the Indian Army in his possession.

Ali was convicted and sentenced to 13 year imprisonment in 2017. According to Ali's lawyer, he appealed against the verdict of the trial court.

Case 11 and 12

Accused: Mohammad Tariq Qasmi

Two cases were withdrawn by the SP government against Tariq Qasmi (a resident of Azamgarh in Barabanki or Gorakhpur).

Qasmi was allegedly involved in explosives-related activities when he was taken into custody with Khalid Mujahid, his Barabanki associates, on December 20, 2007. Later, he was booked in connection to the May 2007 Gorakhpur serial bombs case that left six people injured.

Khalid Mujahid, who was killed during the trial in 2013, was executed by a Barabanki court. Qasim was sentenced to life imprisonment in April 2015. Qasmi was also sentenced by a Gorakhpur court to life imprisonment in connection with the blast case. For the Lucknow-Faizabad court blasts, in which five people were killed, he was also sentenced to life imprisonment.

His lawyer stated that he was pledging against the verdict of the lower court to the High Court.

Case 13

Accused: Sitara Begum

Sitara Begum was a Auraiya resident who was accused of giving shelter to Waqas Ahmed, a Pakistani citizen, in August 2010.

Police said that Waqas was a Pakistani spy who had been passing on information to the ISI about Indian military installations since 2005. He was married to Sitara's child.

Sitara was accused in preparing a fake voter identification card for Waqas.

Sitara was convicted by a Kanpur court and sentenced to six years and ten months imprisonment in April 2017. Waqas were also sentenced to 10 years in jail by the court.

Case 14

Shamim Ahmed, alias Sarfaraz is accused

Shamim Ahmed, a Chandauli resident, was accused of setting off a bomb in Varanasi's public places in 2006. The bomb did not explode and was discovered soon after the twin explosions at Sankatmochan Mandir in March 2006 and Varanasi Kantt Railway Station in Varanasi, where 21 people were killed.

Bombs were created by putting explosives into pressure cookers.

On April 5, 2006, Waliullah was arrested by UP STF. He was the imam at Prayagraj's mosque and claimed that he was responsible for the bombings.

According to the police, three men from Bangladesh were responsible for the explosions. Waliullah studied at Deoband.

Waliullah is currently in Dasna prison in Ghaziabad. However, the trio were never captured. The police in December 2006 named Shamim as the accused and he is also currently on the run.

Amit Shah, Union Home minister, accused the Congress and the Samajwadi Party of 'weakening India's fight against terrorists' by claiming that they had fought for the release of terrorists in past. Shah lashed out against SP chief Akhilesh Yodav, claiming that he sees a certain religion through one eye and a specific caste through the other.

Shah addressed rallies in Sitapur and Pilibhit on the final day of campaigning for UP's fourth phase. This was just before Wednesday's voting. Barabanki votes for the fifth phase.
He made these comments just days after Narendra Modi, prime minister, criticized the SP for withdrawing the cases against terror suspects in the state. Priyanka Gandhi (Congress general secretary in-charge UP) responded to a query about Sunday's statement. She said that she didn't have the time to discuss 'fizool' topics such as terrorism, when there were more pressing issues such as unemployment and stray cattle.

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