Jharkhand Maulana granted bail after 1 year, HC says, ‘no material to show Al-Qaeda links’

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By Muslim Mirror Staff

New Delhi: The Jharkhand High Court on 3 November granted bail to an Islamic cleric a year after he was jailed on unproven charges of having links with terror-outfit Al-Qaeda. The cleric identified as Maulana Kalimuddin Muzahiri was booked under the anti-terror law Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), legal website LiveLaw reported on 16 November.

Several media including The Hindu and The Quint had portrayed him as a terrorist when he was arrested in September 2019. In such cases, almost all media outlets do not refrain from branding accused as terrorists basing their argument on the police versions, which goes against the fundamentals of objective journalism. 

In 2019, ML Meena, then Additional Director General of Police had said, “Kalimuddin is the most wanted terrorist of Al Qaeda. He has been arrested from Tatanagar railway station. He was preparing and motivating the youths for jihad in Indian sub-continent.”

The Jharkhand HC, in its order, stated as quoted by Live Law, “No material has been collected with regard to the involvement of the petitioner in any activities of Al-Qaeda outfit nor the Investigating Officer has collected any material with regard to the money given to this petitioner by any Organization, who was involved in unlawful activities.”

Muzahiri was accused of meeting two alleged co-conspirators Ahmed Masood Akram Sk and Abdul Rahman Katki at his house in Sakchi Madarsa and subsequently receiving money from Gujarat for carrying out ‘anti-national work as a jihadi’, reported LiveLaw.

The Counsel for the petitioner submitted that the case of the petitioner is entirely different from that of other co-accused.

It was submitted that he has been made accused on the ground, that in his house, the meeting was held and also on the ground that money was received by the petitioner from Gujarat. 

However, it was contended that no investigation was done with regard to the money sent to the petitioner for committing anti-national work nor.

It was also submitted that he went to Saudi Arabia thrice after taking permission from the Government for performing Hajj and subsidy have been taken from the Government too. 

It was argued that no material had been brought on record that the petitioner ever met any extremists outfit in Saudi Arabia. 

Lastly, it was submitted that the petitioner was arrested on 22.09.2019, as such, he may be enlarged on bail as the petitioner has no criminal antecedent.

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