TADA case against Salem: SC refuses to vacate stay

The SC refused to vacate its stay on TADA proceedings against alleged gangster Abu Salem.

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday refused
to vacate its stay on TADA proceedings against alleged
gangster Abu Salem in view of the pendency of New Delhi`s plea
with the Portuguese Constitution Court against quashing of his
extradition to India.

A bench headed by Justice P Sathasivam, which had stayed
the proceedings in two cases including that in the 1993 Mumbai
serial blasts, asked the CBI to file affidavit giving details
regarding the proceeding in the Portugal court.

Senior Advocate Gopal Subramanium, appearing for the CBI,
submitted that the Constitutional Court of Portugal has stayed
the order of its high court which had quashed the extradition
treaty with India.

The bench asked the agency to file its affidavit within
four weeks and posted the matter for further hearing on April

Salem approached the apex court against the TADA court`s
order of January 31, rejecting his plea for closure of his

He had filed the application after the Portugal Supreme
Court upheld the order of a lower court there, terminating his
extradition for "violation" of deportation rules by Indian

At the time of Salem`s extradition, India had assured
Portugal that no charges entailing death penalty or
imprisonment of more than 25 years would be pressed against
him, but such charges were later brought in.

Salem is currently lodged in Arthur Road Jail in Mumbai.
Following the Portugal SC`s order, he had appealed to the TADA
court, saying that the trial against him should be closed.

The Delhi Police`s action, which flew in the face of
assurance given to Portugal, left the Union government and the
CBI embarrassed. Later, the police sought to withdraw those
charges, but the Delhi High Court as well the Supreme Court
did not allow it.

Salem then filed a petition in the high court at Lisbon,
alleging violation of the Rule of Speciality. In the ruling on
September 19 last year, the Lisbon court said there had been
a breach of the undertaking given by India.

Salem and his then companion, actress Monica Bedi, were
extradited to India on November 11, 2005, after a marathon
legal process lasting three years.


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