The Madhya Pradesh High Court today quashed a production warrant against jailed gangster Abu Salem by a Bhopal court in a 2002 murder case. The HC ruling came on a petition filed by the gangster, who was extradited from Portugal in 2005, challenging the production warrant issued in 2014. “The order of issuance of production warrant passed by 14th Additional Sessions Judge, Bhopal in relation to the petitioner (Salem) alone is without jurisdiction and deserves to be set aside and is hereby quashed,” Justice Vivek Agarwal observed. Alok Vagrecha and Pushpendra Dubey, the counsels for Salem, said their client was extradited to India in pursuant to the orders of Ministry of Justice, Portugal, dated March 28, 2003, that said he can be tried in nine cases only. So the production warrant of January 15, 2014 and the Bhopal murder case trial against him were against the extradition terms, they argued.
The order of the Bhopal court is “patently illegal” and not sustainable in the eyes of law because it violates the provisions contained in Section 21 of the Extradition Act, 1962, they contended. The state government, that is a respondent in the case, said as Salem was being tried in another case of murder, he could be prosecuted in Bhopal murder case as well. After hearing the contention of both parties, Justice Agarwal observed “…since no request for extradition was made in relation to offence registered at Police Station Parvalia Sadak, Bhopal, seeking extradition of the petitioner, he cannot be tried in respect of an offence which does not form part of the decree of extradition.”
The gangster is currently lodged in Taloja jail in Navi Mumbai.