Abu Salem
Abu Salem

On Monday, deported gangster Abu Salem's lawyer, Sudeep Pasbola argued on the point of sentence in the 1993 blasts trial. He told the court that Salem should be given a set-off (the time he has been jailed should be considered while sentencing).

Pasbola argued that Salem has been unfairly treated by the prosecution, court, and government. He should have been treated like his co accused who has similar charges.

More time in jail
"He has already undergone twice the period in jail that his co-accused spent. The maximum that they were awarded was eight years, while he has already spent 15 years in prison," Pasbola told the court. His period of arrest should be counted from the day he was detained in Portugal, and not from when he was extradited and brought to India. His period of arrest should be counted from the time he was detained because he was arrested on the basis of a red corner notice issued by the Indian government, he argued.

Pasbola further told court that Salem is entitled for a set-off. The CBI counsel before this had sought the extreme sentence. He said besides the extradition treaty, there were many assurances including those which are not on paper, given by the government, these cannot be blatantly ignored. At least now, the system should redeem itself and stop the miscarriage of justice, Pasbola told the court.

Treaty says
He also said that the extradition treaty clearly said that Salem cannot be sentenced to death or given any punishment for more than 25 years.