A petition by 46-year-old gangster and terror convict Abu Salem for parole to get married was rejected by the Bombay High Court today. Salem, who is serving life imprisonment in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case, had petitioned the high court that he should be allowed to maintain family and social ties.
He wanted a month-long parole to marry Kausar Bahar, a resident of Mumbra area of Thane district, adjoining Mumbai.
The gangster, who is lodged at the Taloja jail in Navi Mumbai, approached the high court after the prison authorities rejected his plea for parole.
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In his application moved before the court, Salem said the parole request may be considered on â€œhumanitarian groundsâ€ as he â€œcannot shun his dutyâ€ towards the woman since he has promised to marry her.
He said Kausar also does not intend to marry anyone else. However, he did not mention the date when he intends to get married.
Salem is already married once.
A division bench, comprising Acting Chief Justice V K Tahilramani and Justice M S Sonak, rejected the petition, observing that Salem has been convicted on serious charges of terrorism and hence, cannot be released on parole.
â€œWe cannot ignore the fact that he has been convicted in a Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act (TADA) case on terrorism charges. Hence, the petition is dismissed,â€ the court ruled.
Salem, who had been absconding after the 1993 serial blasts in which nearly 300 people were killed, was arrested in Portugal in 2002 in a fake passport case.
He was extradited to India in November 2005 and since then he is lodged in the jail.
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Last year, a special court convicted Salem in the case under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, TADA and the Arms Act.
The court had sentenced him to life imprisonment in the case.