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Friday, September 30, 2022

Muslim man granted bail in conversion & plot to murder case

The Madras High Court has given bail to a Muslim man arrested for conspiring to kill a Hindu man in Tamil Nadu. The latter was against his son, who married a Muslim girl, converting to Islam. TN police arrested the Muslim man after he was found acting suspiciously.

In March 2022, Saddam Hussain was arrested by Coimbatore police when he tried to flee at their sight. Upon investigation, he revealed that he was sent to watch one Kumaresan to plot his murder. Kumaresan’s son had married a Muslim girl, and the latter’s family was upset with that. They asked the boy to convert to Islam, but Kumaresan was against it. Enraged by this, the girl’s family plotted to murder him.

Sadam Hussain was sent to murder Kumaresan using a gun. But he was caught by the alert police and based on his confession, Bakrudeen (54), Imran Khan (39), Mohammad Ali Jinna (47) and Ramveer (20) were immediately arrested. At that time Tamil media, Polimer News reported that the accused made the plans to murder him through WhatsApp and phone calls. One India reported that NIA discovered their plan to buy a gun from West Bengal and alerted TN police about the same.

But now Sadam Hussain has been granted bail by the Madras HC which said that “there were no reasonable grounds for believing that he had conspired” to kill Kumaresan. The court observed, “Taking into consideration the facts and circumstances of the case… and on a perusal of the case diary, this court is of the opinion that the allegations against the appellant (Sadam Hussain of Coimbatore) do not fall within the definition of ‘terrorist act’ and there are no reasonable grounds for believing that the accusation is prima facie true.”

The court further said that the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act(UAPA) could not be applied to him as there were no complaints and no one was injured. The prosecution argued that Sadam and others intended to “warn people against marrying those professing faith in Islam and get them converted”. But the judges felt this and the other motive to kill Kumaresan because he was against converting his son are vice versa. If the motive was the latter, they would have kept it a secret they opined.

It is to be noted that TN police requested the National Investigation Agency to take over that case. But the latter appeared to have refused to do so. Taking this into account the judges said that “no stretch of imagination could such an accusation be termed a terrorist act”. It is unclear whether media reports about the conspirators trying to buy a gun from West Bengal were untrue, or the NIA felt it wasn’t strong enough a reason to take up the case. 

The observations reveal that all the arrested including the girl’s mother confessed to having plotted Kumaresan’s murder only after which UAPA was applied. Yet the court has decided to grant Sadam bail saying that the NIA refusing to take up the case for the investigation itself speaks much about the prosecution’s case. But it also noted that “the observations made for the purpose of granting bail should not influence the trial in any way”. The accused belong to Indian Muslim Development Association, which claims to be an NGO working for the upliftment of Muslims and a self-styled organisation for the promotion of Islam.

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