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Mumbai cleric gets bail from Srinagar court; on way back to city

Written by: Staff
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Mumbai, Apr 24 (UNI) Imam of Mumbai's famous Haj House is being brought back to the city by the police from Srinagar, where he was granted bail by a local court last week, police sources here said.

Arrested on January 14 by the anti-terrorist squad (ATS) of the city police for his alleged links with terrorist groups, Ghulam Yahya Khan was taken away by the Jammu and Kashmir police on February 20 to probe his links with terrorist organisations.

ATS had arrested him on the charge of having links with Pakistan-based Hizbul Mujahideen and for sheltering three terrorists at Haj House in south Mumbai. The cleric was also accused of lending his mobile phone to them to enable them stay in touch with activists of the terrorist outfit.

Three other militants - Khurshid Ahmad, Arshad Badroo and Muhammed Ramzan- also arrested by the ATS, are also under investigation by the J&K police.

The Haj House Imam was taken away by the J&K police on a production warrant from a city jail after the expiry of his police remand at Mumbai. But Ghulam Yahya Khan was granted bail by a Srinagar court on April 21 after the J&K police failed to provide sufficient evidence against him.

The J&K police appeal to book the cleric under the Public Safety Act was turned down by the Srinagar court on the ground that the mandatory government sanction to book him under the stringent act had not been obtained.

Following the Imam's arrest, several Muslim organisations had protested claiming he had been falsely implicated to tarnish the image of Haj House.

Farid Sheikh, convenor of Anti-Terrorist Forum (ATF), an NGO set up after his arrest, said they are providing legal assistance to him and the Rs 10,000 surety sought by the Srinagar court for his bail was also arranged by them.

The cleric, who is in Srinagar's Central jail, is being escorted by the J&K police to be handed over to Mumbai police tomorrow.

Later, he will be produced before the Mazgaon Metropolitan Court for extension of judicial custody, the city police sources added.

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