IM operative Bhatkal alleges threat to life, seeks 24-hour surveillance

Wednesday, Jul 8, 2015,20:08 IST By metro vaartha A A A

Hyderabad | Jailed Indian Mujahideen (IM) co-founder Mohammed Ahmed Siddibapa alias Yasin Bhatkal, an accused in the February 2013 Dilsukhnagar twin blasts here, has alleged he is facing threat to his life from police and sought round-the-clock surveillance.
In a petition filed before the Special Court for NIA cases, Bhatkal and other accused, lodged in the Cherlapalli Central Prison here, sought a direction to the jail authorities to install CCTV cameras in the high-security cell to maintain round-the-clock surveillance on them.
Almost all of the jail premises is equipped with CCTV cameras except the high-security cell in which we are lodged. CCTV cameras were not installed intentionally by the jail authorities to facilitate in creating false, fabricated and imaginary stories, Bhatkal alleged.
The petitioners apprehend great and immediate threat to their lives from the jail authorities and escort people, who are working under the direct influence and control of NIA, Bhatkal’s counsel Shaik Saifullah Khaled said.
He said the matter will come up before the court tomorrow when charges against the accused are expected to be framed. In view of the threat to their lives, the CCTV camera surveillance/coverage of their daily lives and movements are very much essential to avoid any foul play by the authorities.
Hence, the court may be pleased to direct jail authorities to keep the petitioners in CCTV surveillance for 24 hours in the jail as well as on the way to production of petitioners before the court, the petitioners’ counsel submitted. This surveillance can act as a documentary evidence, he said.
The petitioners also alleged they were confined to the small cell round-the-clock without proper food, fresh air and sunlight because of which they were suffering from ailments. There were newspaper reports last week that Bhatkal called up his wife using a cellphone from inside the jail and told her that he would get out of the jail soon with help from friends from Damascus, in an apparent reference to the jihadists of ISIS.
Eighteen people were killed and 131 injured in the deadly twin explosions that were triggered by powerful IEDs planted in Dilsukhnagar, a crowded shopping area in the city, on February 21, 2013.

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