SC allows transfer of trials of Jamaatis in UP to specified courts

Tablighi Jamaat

New Delhi, Sep 4 : The Supreme Court on Friday allowed consolidation of multiple FIRs lodged in Uttar Pradesh against foreign nationals in connection with the Tablighi Jamaat activities, and also agreed to the transfer of pending trials before specified courts.

A bench comprising Justices A.M. Khanwilkar, Dinesh Maheshwari and Sanjiv Khanna directed the UP government to move the principal bench of Allahabad High Court with an application on the number of courts, which would take up pending trials across the state.

The bench also asked the High Court to identify the specific courts within a period of one week for hearing of these matters, and that these courts should attempt to wrap up the trial within 8 weeks.

The observation from the top court came while considering applications by foreign nationals facing trials across UP, seeking consolidation of FIRs and an expedited trial, as granted by the top court with respect to the original matter led by 34 petitioners from Delhi.

On September 1, the apex court had allowed the transfer of all trials pending before trial court in Bihar to one particular court.

Senior advocate Maneka Guruswamy, representing the petitioners, suggested a total of two to three courts, should be tasked with taking up the trials in UP. The bench expressed willingness to allow one court per zone in UP.

Guruswamy cited the example of Zone 3, Bareilly, where eight Indonesian nationals were granted bail. She contended that the first three bail conditions are fine, but the fourth condition sought the presence of the First Secretary of the Embassy before the court. She argued that only a few special courts should be designated to hear the trials of applicants.

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