Mumbai police left red faced, HC upholds Ansari, Sabauddin

Written by: Pti
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Mumbai, Feb 21 (PTI) Mumbai police''s elite crime branchwas again left red-faced today after Bombay High Courtdismissed its appeal challenging the acquittal of Fahim Ansariand Sabauddin Ahmed Shaikh in the 26/11 attacks case asco-conspirators.

With the prosecution''s case linking the duo with thecrime being rejected, Special Public Prosector Ujjwal Nikkamattempted to put a brave face saying he had already spoken toMaharashtra Chief Minister Prathviraj Chavan and Home MinisterR R Patil for filing an appeal against the acquittal.

The division bench comprising Justice Ranjana Desai andJustice R V More while dismissing the plea of state governmentsaid "we are of the view that the view taken by learnedSessions Judge so far as involvement of Ansari and Shaikh inthis case is concerned, cannot be called unreasonable,palpably false, manifestly erroneous and demonstrativelyunsustainable which merits our interference."

The division bench again pointed out in its judgmentthat the map allegedly handed over by Ansari, who is alreadyan accused in a case of shooting down CRPF personnel at Rampurin Uttar Pradesh, to a person in Nepal could not becorroborated.

Prosecution had claimed that the same map was recoveredfrom the pocket of Abu Ismail, a terrorist shot dead during anencounter that led to arrest of Ajmal Kasab.

The high court concurred with the view taken bySessions Judge M L Tahaliyani that the map recovered fromIsmail''s pocket should have some wrinkles on it and bloodspots as the Lashker-e-Taiba(LeT) terrorist was badly injuredin the gun-fight.

The prosecution in its appeal had claimed that thesessions judge had erred in making this opinion. However, theHigh Court in its ruling said "we had a look at the cargopant, particularly the pocket from where the map wasrecovered."

"There are small spots of blood on the border of thepocket. We find that the appeal memo contains a sketch of thepocket. It shows that there were blood stains on the corner ofthe right side of the pocket.

"There are two spots of blood on the upper portion. Thisfact is admitted in the appeal memo. Thus, the prosecution hasalso come with the case that there were blood stains on thecorner and upper portion of the right side pocket. In suchcircumstances, the view taken by learned Sessions Judge onthis aspect cannot be called perverse."

"I have already spoken to Chief Minister and HomeMinister and recommended to file appeal against HC''s order,"Nikkam, whose arguments failed to impress the judges due tolack of corroborative evidences, said. .

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