Rejecting the police charge that
they were members of the banned Students Islamic Movement of India
(SIMI) group and involved in rioting and anti-nation activities,
Additional Session Court Malegaon Thursday acquitted ten local
Muslim youth of all charges.
The ten local youth along with four
others were arrested by the local police on June 02, 2000 after a
protest in the city against Russian actions to counter Chechen
The prosecution had contended that
the ten youth were members of the banned outfit SIMI and were
allegedly involved in an attempt to burn the Russian flag on June
02, 2000. The police refrained the protesters from burning the
Russian flag but had arrested scores of people along with some
alleged SIMI members.
Additional Session Court Magistrate
SS Shinde while acquitting the local youth also admonished the
local police. The police had arrested 14 local youth on June 02,
Those acquitted by the court
include: Mohd Aabid Ab Majeed, Khaled Ab Lateef Aimi, Anwar Md
Basheer, Gufran Ah Ab
Azeez, Shafeeque Ah Qamruddin, Afzal Ah Altaf Husain, Haroon Md
Ayyub, Ab Azeez Md Ayyub, Md Ameen Md Yunus and Nisar A Md Ibrahim.
Incidentally, Mohd Abid and Khaled
Ab Lateef Aimi who are acquitted Thursday are brothers of two of
the 2006 Malegaon blast accused who were released on bail in
Also, Mohd. Abid died a year before
in an accident.
Speaking to reporter after their
acquittal in the case the local youth recalled how they were
tortured and treated by the police during the last more than ten
years. They said that after their arrest on June 02, they got the
bail on June 12, but whenever any blast or such incident would
occur at any place in the country, they were called for
"We were called to police stations
mid-night and questions like 'do you know this Pakistani
terrorist?', 'when had you visited Pakistan for training?', 'Are
you associated with that outfit' were asked repeatedly. Though we
were never involved in any such activities", said Gufran Ah Ab
He said that they were merely bystanders on the day when
the protest against Russia was held near Shahidon ki Yadgar. Yet police arrested them and slapped a wrong
case against them.
"Our stand is vindicated. But who is
responsible for the ten years' of trauma we had to undergo because
of a wrong case?", he asked.
Almost all the ten belong to very
poor families. They were defended in the court by Advocate
Shabbeer Kardar, Advocate Hashim and Advocate Farooque Memon, who
citing their poor economic conditions provided them legal
assistance free of cost.
The four others who were arrested
along with these ten are Munawwar Husain, Riyaz Arsalan, Dr Imran
and Maulana Ashfaque. While the court did not deliver its ruling
against Munawwar Husain and Riyaz Arsala - alleged to be the SIMI
members who are absconding in the 2006 Malegaon blast case, an
order on Dr Imran and Maulana Ashfaque was withheld because they
were reportedly absent in most of the court hearing.