Jailed PFI Leader Abubacker Doing Fine, Receiving Treatment: NIA Informs Delhi High Court
Responding to E Abubacker's plea against a trial court's order refusing to release him on medical grounds, the NIA today told the Delhi High Court that the jailed former chairman of the outlawed Popular Front of India is "absolutely fine" and receiving treatment.
Last month, Abubacker's counsel had said the 70-year-old was suffering from cancer and Parkinson's disease, and was in "great pain", which needed urgent medical attention. The court had then asked the NIA to file a status report in response to the plea for medical treatment.
"We have filed a status report along with the report of AIIMS. He is absolutely fine. He is under treatment. As and when he is required, he is taken there (the hospital)," said Special Public Prosecutor Akshai Malik, who represents the National Investigation Agency.
Counsel for Abubacker, Advocate Adit Pujari, sought time from the Court to seek instructions on the status report and for further pursuing the appeal.
"The counsel for the appellant prays for and is granted time to obtain instructions qua the further prosecution of the present appeal," said the bench of Justice Siddharth Mridul and Justice Talwant Singh, and listed the case for further hearing on December 19.
Abubacker was arrested by the anti-terror probe agency NIA during a massive crackdown on the banned organisation earlier this year and is in judicial custody.
Last month, the court had said requisite medical treatment will be provided to the accused while rejecting the submission that he should be placed under house arrest.
"We are not inclined to do that. AIIMS is a premier hospital in the country. If you are using this as a pretext for house arrest, we are not granting that. We are only concerned with his medical condition," the Court had said.
It had said it will hear the appeal for medical treatment and that the accused could approach the trial court for regular bail. The NIA had said it was not against medical treatment to the accused and the investigation in the case was going on.
A large number of alleged PFI activists were detained or arrested in several states during the massive raids preceding the nation-wide ban imposed on September 28. In near-simultaneous raids across the country as part of a multi-agency operation spearheaded by the NIA, a large number of PFI activists were rounded up 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 on September 28 for five years under the stringent anti-terror law UAPA, accusing them of having "links" with global terror groups like the ISIS.
With PTI inputs