‘No material on record, not even remote, which makes out a prima facie case against the accused’
Srinagar: A Special NIA Court here at Srinagar on Saturday came down heavily on police authorities for failing to produce evidence against the accused in the Kashmirfight blog case and the Shujat Bukhari murder case.
The court recorded that this case is leading towards section 169 CrPC (wherein accused can be released due to lack of evidence).
The NIA Court Judge while hearing the bail pleas of Sofi Mohammad Akbar and Tabish Akbar Rehmani, who were arrested under FIRs 51/2018 and 41/2021, recorded that in both the FIRs the investigating officer has failed to collect any sufficient evidence against the accused and there is no material on the record, not even remote, which makes out a ‘prima facie’ case against these persons.
Special Judge Manjeet Singh Manhas noted that it is the mandate of law that evidence on record should make out a prima-facie case against the accused persons but “in the present case the evidence on record and the circumstances do not knot a chain of events which could lead to the logical conclusion that the accused seem to have been connected with the alleged offences.”
“The said chain of events is missing in the present case. Till date no prima facie offences have been established against the accused persons,” Judge Manhas said.
The court also recorded that bail is granted to a person in those FIRs where offences under different penal codes are alleged to have been committed in the police report, but in the present case even no prima-facie evidence has been produced and thus even bail is not required but full release instead.
“There is no need for grant of bail in such FIRs where there is no prima-facie case made out,” Judge Manhas pointed out.
The police this year had claimed to have made a major breakthrough by arresting the persons behind issuing of “intimidations” to social activists, political leaders, government officers and journalists, during multiple raids in Srinagar and Poonch areas of J&K.
The IGP had informed that five persons were arrested, four of them from Srinagar, during the operation, namely, Nazish Yasrab Rehmani and Tabish Akbar Rehmani from Sanat Nagar, Sofi Mohammed Akbar from Rajbagh, Peerzada Raqif Makhdoomi from Batpora, Hazratbal, and Javed Khalid from Poonch.
“The blog Kashmirfight.wordpress.com was being run by a white collar terrorist syndicate whose task was to prepare a strategic hit list of Government officers, journalists, social activists, lawyers, political functionaries who were assessed by the syndicate to be responsible for harming the overarching objectives of furthering and sustaining the Pakistani supported terrorist programme with the eventual aim of secession of Jammu and Kashmir from the Indian union and its eventual annexation with Pakistan,” the IGP had said.