Pune ISIS Module: Court Rejects Suspects' Plea For Transfer To High-Security Cell

Pune ISIS Module: Court Rejects Suspects' Plea For Transfer To High-Security Cell

Rejecting the trio’s petition, Special Judge BD Shelke said courts are directed to not interfere with prison administration and pleas for jail transfers.

Charul Shah JoshiUpdated: Thursday, March 14, 2024, 01:01 AM IST
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A special NIA court on Wednesday rejected a plea filed by three terror suspects requesting a transfer from the general barracks of Taloja Central Jail to a high-security cell of the prison.

Shamil Saquib Nachan, son of serial terror convict Saquib Nachan, Aakif Ateeque Nachan and Zulfikar Ali Barodawala were arrested in August 2023 in connection with the Pune ISIS module case.

"It is for prison authorities to decide"

Rejecting the trio’s petition, Special Judge BD Shelke said courts are directed to not interfere with prison administration and pleas for jail transfers. "It is for prison authorities to decide how to secure prisoners inside the jail, the judge said. The court can issue directions in exceptional circumstances," he said, adding that the three accused have not brought any exceptional circumstances on record.

Zulfikar, Shamil and Aakif contended that there is a danger to their life inside the general barracks, in view of allegations that they are members of the ISIS terror group.

Further, they contended that as per the jail circular, those booked in such cases should be kept in high-security cells and not in general barracks. Hence, they prayed for issuing directions to the superintendent, Central Prison, Taloja, to transfer them to a high-security cell.

Prison authorities said lodging accused in separate barracks was not feasible

The prison authorities, however, said that lodging the accused in separate barracks is not feasible. The jail’s capacity is 1,984; however, around 3,200 prisoners, including terrorists and hardened criminals are lodged there, they said.

The prison department said that to avoid groupism and incidents between various groups, the administration has arranged the prisoners in separate barracks.

The lawyer for the three contended that the general barracks are overcrowded while the special cells are empty. She also referred to a notification of the home department directing high-risk prisoners to be kept in high-security cells.

The court rejected their plea relying on a circular issued in July 2019 by the principal sessions judge, wherein it was directed that orders or directions should not be passed regarding transfer of inmates from one jail to another or from one barrack to another barrack of the same jail which are inconsistent with prison rules.

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