Delhi Police wins custody battle of two top IM operatives
New Delhi: After a tug of war, Delhi Police today had its way when a special court granted it 13-day custody of Indian Mujahideen (IM) operatives Tehseen Akhtar, Zia-ur-Rehman alias Waqas and three others by brushing aside claims of NIA to quiz them first.
Additional Sessions Judge Daya Prakash passed the order after Special Cell of Delhi Police and National Investigation Agency (NIA) exchanged heated arguments to take the custody of Tehseen and Waqas, who were wanted for their alleged roles in the February last year Dilsukhnagar blasts in Hyderabad.
Tehseen and Waqas, along with other alleged IM operatives, Mohd Maroof, Wakar Azhar and Mohd Saqib Ansari, who all were arrested by the special cell last month, were produced before the court in muffled faces after expiry of police custody.
The special cell sought extension of their custody for 15 days on the ground that they have to be interrogated to know about the whereabouts of others members of the terror outfit.
However, NIA opposed the police`s plea saying that being a federal investigating agency, they should be permitted to formally arrest Tehseen and Waqas, a Pakistani national, in Dilsukhnagar blasts case.
Special Cell`s prosecutor Rajiv Mohan countered the claims of NIA saying they have arrested these accused first and they need to interrogate them to unearth the conspiracy.
"You cannot curtail the rights of local police in the name of NIA Act... They (NIA) have not arrested the accused. We (special cell) had not stopped them (NIA) from arresting these accused," Mohan argued.
He said that some more wanted IM operatives, including its co-founder Riyaz Bhatkal, was to be arrested on the basis of the interrogation of these accused persons.
NIA prosecutor Ahmed Khan, however, submitted that the NIA Act has overriding effect and being a central agency, they have the right to interrogate these two accused.
"What you (police) have done in last 10 days?," he asked the special cell and argued in the court that police was duty bound to inform them after arresting these accused.
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