New Delhi: Arrested 26/11 key handler Abu Jundal will be flown to Mumbai after a Delhi court on Friday handed over his custody to ATS Mumbai, which wanted him in connection with a series of terror attacks in Maharashtra.
Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Vinod Yadav directed that Jundal be handed over to ATS Mumbai after the Delhi Police said he was no longer required to be interrogated by it in the Jama Masjid attack case.
Jundal is wanted by the Mumbai police in the 2006 Aurangabad arms haul case, the 26/11 Mumbai mayhem, the 2010 German bakery blast and the Nasik Academy attack.
"This accused is required in Mumbai in four cases. This court deems it fit at this stage to transfer the custody of the accused to ATS Mumbai only for the purpose of production of this accused before Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Mumbai on July 21 before 4 pm," the court ordered.
"The CMM, Mumbai would in his wisdom consider the comparative merit and the requirement of the accused in the four cases and would grant custody of this accused accordingly," the court said.
The court also directed that "after completion of the interrogation of the accused in the four cases, he be brought back to Delhi so that the issue of handing over of his custody to NIA and other agencies may be considered."
Earlier, during the arguments, NIA`s counsel Ahmed Khan
said Jundal is liable to be produced before Special NIA court on July 21 for offences under Unlawful Activities Prevention Act being investigated by the agency.
He said the investigation conducted in other matters by ATS Pune, ATS Mumbai and Special Cell of Delhi Police is in relation to the offences which stood committed in the past, whereas the NIA is engaged in averting any other terrorist strike by Jundal and his associates across the country.
ATS Mumbai told the court that Jundal`s custody is "absolutely essential" in the Aurangabad arms haul case where he is an accused and has been declared a proclaimed offender.
The officers from the Detection Crime Branch, CID, Mumbai and ATS Mumbai also stressed for Jundal`s custody in the German bakery blast case and the Nasik Police Academy case, saying he was one of the conspirators in those incidents.
ATS Ahmedabad also sought Jundal`s custody arguing that he is a proclaimed offender in the Karnawati Express Blast saying he was one of the main conspirators who prepared, provided and planted the bomb.
The court made it clear that the handing over of Jundal`s custody to ATS Mumbai would not come in the way of NIA and other agencies seeking his custody.
Meanwhile, Jundal`s counsel M S Khan prayed to the court that media be restrained from publishing his client`s photographs as he is being produced in court in a muffled face and publishing his pictures could affect his defence. The judge said his statement is taken on record.
Sources said the Delhi Police has lodged another FIR against Jundal for hatching a conspiracy to carry out various terror strikes across the country.
Jundal was produced before CMM Yadav after the expiry of his 30-day custody with the Delhi Police which quizzed him about the 2010 Jama Masjid blast.
In its charge sheet in the Jama Masjid attack case against 11 IM modules, the Delhi Police had said they were running an arms manufacturing unit in Meer Vihar area in West Delhi.
Jundal had allegedly trained the 10 Pakistani terrorists who had attacked Mumbai on November 26, 2008, besides teaching them basic Hindi and apprising them of Mumbai`s topography.
After his deportation from Saudi Arabia, Jundal was arrested from the Indira Gandhi International Airport here on June 21 by the Delhi Police.
The Delhi police had taken him in its custody in a case relating to the arrest of various Indian Mujahideen operatives and interrogated him for his involvement in Jama Masjid, German Bakery and Chinnaswamy stadium blasts. The case was registered on November 22, 2011.
Jundal has been booked under various provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, the Explosive Substances Act, the Passport Act and various sections of IPC.