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A local court is likely to frame charges against LeT operative and key 26/11 handler Sayed Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal next month in the 2006 Aurangabad Arms Haul Case.

“The (MCOCA) court has issued production warrant against Jundal for January 9 and charges are likely to be framed on that date,” said Jundal’s lawyer Ejaz Naqvi.

The production warrant was issued after Jundal told the court that he wanted to talk to his lawyer before the framing of charges, Naqvi said.

Jundal was today produced in the court via video link from Tihar jail.

The special court asked Jundal if he wanted to say anything before framing of charges, his lawyer said.

At this, Jundal said that he wanted to talk to the lawyer before the charges are framed.

Meanwhile special public prosecutor Raja Takare told the court that charges under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, Explosives Act, Explosives Substance Act, Indian Penal Code and Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) were maintained against Jundal.

When the court told the official of the Tihar jail, who also appeared via video link, to produce Jundal on January 9, he told the court that Jundal was in the custody of Chief Metropolitan Magistrate’s (CMM) court, Delhi, and he cannot be sent to Mumbai without his direction.

The jail official said that the CMM would be joining his office on January 1, after which the court issued a production warrant, said Naqvi.

Meanwhile, neither the Yerwada jail nor the Arthur Road jail have filed their reply to the notice issued by the court as to in which prison Jundal will be lodged.

The court had issued notices to the Union Home Ministry, state Anti Terrorism Squad, and authorities of Arthur Road jail and Pune Yerwada jail asking them in which jail Jundal can be kept.

Jundal was arrested on August 13 this year in the Aurangabad Arms Haul case and was chargesheeted on November 3.

On May 8, 2006, a Maharashtra ATS team had chased a Tata Sumo and an Indica car on Chandwad-Manmad highway near Aurangabad and arrested three terror suspects and seized 30 kg RDX, 10 AK-47 assault rifles and 3,200 bullets.

The Indica was allegedly driven by Jundal, who managed to give police the slip.

Hailing from Beed district of Maharashtra, Jundal then allegedly drove to Malegaon and handed over the vehicle to an acquaintance.

In May 2006 itself, he escaped to Bangladesh from where he fled to Pakistan on a fake passport obtained with the help of LeT operatives, according to the crime branch.

On August 17 this year, the special MCOCA court had framed charges against the 21 arrested accused in the case. Others accused were arrested in 2006.

 

PTI


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