Mumbai: Jail officer interrogated Areeb Majeed, claims lawyer

According to the suspected ISIS member’s lawyer, an officer from the jail gave him 50 photos of foreigners on Monday and asked if he could identify any of them

A Special NIA court remanded suspected ISIS member, Areeb Majeed, in judicial custody till January 28 and also asked the Arthur Road jail authorities to file a report after Majeed’s lawyer claimed he was interrogated by a jail officer. Areeb’s lawyer, Wahab Khan, submitted three applications to the court.

Areeb Majeed’s judicial custody has been extended till January 28
Areeb Majeed’s judicial custody has been extended till January 28

The first asked the court to allow Areeb to keep his academic books, a few non-fiction books and some essentials like clothes. These books included one on construction management and advance management technology, structural analysis, a book on railway engineering, Forge Your Future by APJ Abdul Kalam and My Experiments with Truth by M K Gandhi.

In the second application, the court was informed that on Monday, around 12.30 pm, Areeb was taken out of his solitary confinement to meet a jail officer, who gave him 50 passport-size colour photographs of foreigners and asked if he could identify any of them.

Special NIA Judge Y D Shinde asked authorities of Arthur Road jail to file a report on the same in the next hearing. As per law, a jail officer is not allowed to speak to an accused regarding a case. The third application requested CCTV footage of the jail to prove that Areeb was not kept in solitary confinement.

At the previous hearing, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) had informed the court that Areeb was kept with three other inmates, and there was no solitary confinement in the jail. His lawyer claimed that only after the application against solitary confinement was filed, that the 23-year-old was allowed to be with other prisoners, two days later.

Time with family
When the Kalyan youth was escorted to the court at around 11.25 am, his family, standing at the other side of the entrance, called out “Guddu” to get his attention.

But he was not allowed to meet them. The judge allowed Areeb to meet his parents and two sisters for 10 minutes after the court session, on his lawyer’s request. Areeb was happy to see, and later talk, to his family, and was close to tears.

This was the first time that Areeb met his sisters in the court. His family also gave him the books and other necessities allowed by the court, before he was escorted back to the jail. The 23-year-old is being tried under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and Section 125 (waging war against any Asiatic country which has friendly ties with India) of the Indian Penal Code.

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