SC stays trial of 3 accused in Malegaon blasts

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New Delhi, Feb 29 (UNI) The Supreme Court today stayed the trial of three accused being tried under Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) for their alleged involvement in the Malegaon bomb explosions.

A bench comprising Justices B N Aggrawal and G S Singhvi stayed the trial of petitioner Zameer Ahmed Latifur Rahman Sheikh, Mohd Muzaffar, Mohd Tanvir and Sabeer Ahmed Masiullah, who were charged with offences under section 2(1)(e) MCOCA which deals with insurgency and terrorism.

Sheikh is an accused in the Mumbai local trains bomb blasts which took place on November 7, 2006 , Mohd Muzaffar is accused of illegally possessing a large quantity of arms and ammunition which was allegedly recovered from him in Aurangabad while Masiullah is facing trial in the Malegaon bomb blast case.

The petitioners have challenged the validity of section 2(1)(e) MCOCA which is a state act.

According to the petitioners, acts of involvement in insurgency and terrorism could be tried only under central law. A state act could not be applied in such cases. Hence, their trial under MCOCA was illegal and so proceedings against them should be quashed and they should be discharged and released forthwith.

The apex court also issued notices to the Mahrashtra government and the Centre on the petitions.

UNI AKS/SC MS ND1805

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