Court seeks Tihar authorities’ response as Kashmiri leader claims threat

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New Delhi, Oct 6 (IANS) A Sessions court here on Friday asked Tihar jail authorities for their response on a plea by Kashmiri separatist leader Shabir Shah who claimed a threat to his life in prison and request for shifting to the high-risk ward for safety.

Shah is presently in judicial custody in a money laundering case and has been provided security inside the Tihar Central Jail here.

Additional Sessions Judge Sidharth Sharma listed the matter for October 13.

Shah’s counsel M.S. Khan said there was serious threat to Shah’s life as a few incidents have happened with him in jail as well as in judicial lockup in Patiala House Courts complex.

Considering the threat to Shah’s life in judicial lockup, the court had earlier allowed his plea for court appearance via video-conferencing.

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Khan urged the court to shift Shah to the high-risk ward in Tihar jail to ensure his safety and security.

He urged the court to provide better medical treatment for Shah and visit to All India Institute of Medical Sciences for regular medical check-up.

Shah said he was suffering from diabetes mellitus and had to follow a proper diet regime.

Khan complained that Tihar jail officials were not providing Shah with diet as prescribed by doctors and as a result, his health was going down day by day which may cause serious medical complications.

“Tihar jail officials are acting indifferently for reasons best known to them,” Shah’s counsel said.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had filed a charge sheet in the case last month against alleged ‘hawala’ operator Muhammad Aslam Wani and Shah under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). Copies of the charge sheet have since been supplied to the accused.

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Wani was arrested on August 6. He had reportedly confessed that he had passed on hawala money of Rs 2.25 crore to Shabir Shah.

Shah was arrested on July 25 on charge of money laundering in a case dating back to 2005, when the Delhi Police Special Cell arrested Wani.

In the 2005 case lodged by the Special Cell, the court had acquitted co-accused Wani of the charges of criminal conspiracy and other offences but convicted him under the Arms Act, his defence counsel told the court.

The ED submitted that conviction under the Arms Act is a triggering point to take action under the PMLA.



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