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Plea filed before Delhi HC against extension of probe deadline against PFI members in UAPA case

Under the UAPA, if it is not possible to complete the investigation within a period of ninety days, the trial court may extend it up to 180 days

PTI New Delhi Published 09.01.23, 04:18 PM
Representational image

Representational image File image

Arrested PFI members on Monday approached the Delhi High Court against the extension of duration granted to the National Investigation Agency (NIA) to conclude its investigation in the case registered against the banned organisation under the anti-terror law UAPA.

The counsel for the petitioners Mohammad Yousuf and others assailed a December 19 trial court order which extended the probe deadline by 60 days, contending the additional time was given without giving “notice of the prosecutor’s report” to them, which was filed in a sealed cover.


A bench of justices Siddharth Mridul and Talwant Singh listed the case for further hearing on January 25 while noting that the high court has already rejected objections with respect to the non-supply of the prosecutor's report- which details the progress of investigation - to the accused in another case under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).

The court observed that when a judgement of a coordinate bench is relevant to the issue before it, a party cannot “skirt around” it and has to bring it to its notice.

The counsel for NIA said that as per the earlier decision of the high court, the prosecutor’s report cannot be given to an accused in a UAPA case and, in the present case, the accused persons were heard by the trial court.

The counsel for the petitioners said that the investigating agency did not give any “specific reason” for the extension of the probe deadline and only said that the case has a “voluminous record”.

It was also contended that submitting the prosecutor’s report in a sealed cover was contrary to law.

Under the UAPA, if it is not possible to complete the investigation within a period of ninety days, the trial court may extend it up to 180 days.

A large number of alleged PFI activists were detained or arrested in several states during the massive raids preceding the nationwide ban imposed on the outfit on September 28, 2022.

In near-simultaneous raids, the PFI activists were detained or arrested in 11 states for allegedly supporting terror activities in the country.

The arrests were made in states and Union Territories, including Kerala, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Assam, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Puducherry, Delhi and Rajasthan.

The government banned the PFI and several of its associate organisations for five years under the stringent anti-terror law UAPA, accusing them of having "links" with global terror groups like the ISIS.

Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.

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