NIA court awards 10-year-jail to 4 accused of Indian Mujahideen conspiracy case

13 July, 2023 | Amish Mahajan

NIA National

NIA Special Court sentenced four persons to 10 years of imprisonment in the Indian Mujahideen conspiracy case relating to the plot hatched by Pak-backed terrorists to trigger bomb blasts across India.

In a significant development, a special court of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) handed down a 10-year prison sentence to four individuals involved in the Indian Mujahideen (IM) conspiracy case. The case pertains to a plot orchestrated by Pakistan-backed terrorists to carry out bomb blasts across India. However, due to the considerable amount of time they have already spent in jail, the verdict has cleared the path for their release.

Under the authority of Special Judge Shailendra Malik, Danish Ansari, Aftab Alam, Imran Khan, and Obaid-ur-Rehman were convicted under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA), an anti-terror law. The court took into account the fact that the accused had admitted to the charges against them on July 7, leading to their conviction on July 10.

Considering the lengthy period of their incarceration since their arrest in 2013, the judge has directed the relevant authorities to release them if their custody is not required in any other ongoing cases. Additionally, the judge considered the socio-economic background of the convicts, stating that they come from the lower strata of society. In the case of Danish Ansari, the court observed that he had no prior criminal record, was young, and had completed 12th grade. The judge expressed faith in Ansari’s intention to lead a responsible life and become a productive citizen, emphasizing the opportunity for him to positively contribute to society.

Furthermore, the judge outlined the period of custody for each convict. Since Danish Ansari’s sentence had already expired as he had been in judicial custody since January 21, 2013, he was ordered to be released if not required in any other case. Aftab Alam, in custody since February 5, 2013, had his jail term reduced to account for the time he had already served. Imran, who has been in judicial custody since February 28, 2013, will have the duration spent in jail adjusted against his sentence. As for Obaid-ur-Rehman, whose judicial custody began on March 18, 2013, his jail term will be completed in due course following the sentence imposed by the court.

The NIA had initially filed the case in September 2012, charging the accused under relevant sections of the IPC and UAPA, including conspiracy to wage war against the Government of India and raising funds for a terrorist act. During the trial, the defence counsel highlighted the convicts’ impoverished backgrounds and pleaded for leniency in sentencing, taking into consideration their acceptance of guilt and the time already served.