SC seeks Shahabuddin’s reply on plea challenging his bail
The apex court, however, did not grant any interim stay on operation of Patna High Court’s bail order and said “We intend to give him a hearing also. List it on Monday”. The bench comprising justices PC Ghose and Amitava Roy asked Bihar government to serve its notice on Shahabuddin and fixed the matter for hearing on September 26.
Advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for Siwan-based Chandrakeshwar Prasad alias Chanda Babu, whose three sons have been killed in two separate incidents, said Shahabuddin is a “notorious criminal” and his reign of terror is in Bihar “in general” and Siwan “in particular“.
“There are 58 criminal cases pending against Shahabuddin and out of them he has been convicted in eight cases,” he said.
Shahabuddin was granted bail recently by the High Court in the murder case of Rajiv Roshan, son of Chanda Babu and the sole eye-witness to the cold-blooded murder of his two younger brothers in Siwan.
The RJD leader had already been convicted in the twin murder case and the trial in the Roshan murder case is yet to commence.
The Patna High Court, in its bail order, considered the fact that the trial in Roshan murder case could not begin as Shahabuddin was jailed at Bhagalpur prison and enlarged him on bail.
During the hearing, the apex court asked Bhushan as to whether he was seeking cancellation of bail granted to Shahabuddin or he was challenging the Patna High Court order.
“I am challenging the Patna High Court order granting him bail,” Bhushan replied and referred to various case laws to highlight the point that criminal antecedent of an offender should be considered while granting the bail.
Terming Shahabuddin as a “class- A history-sheeter who cannot be reformed”, the lawyer said that High Court should not have granted bail to the leader.
Bihar government also supported the submission of Bhushan and rather went a step ahead while seeking issuance of non-bailable warrant against Shahabuddin. The apex court had on September 16 agreed to hear the plea seeking cancellation of bail granted to gangster-turned-RJD leader Shahabuddin.
Bihar government standing counsel Gopal Singh had earlier said that the High Court had failed to follow its own order of February asking the trial court to preferably complete the trial in the Roshan murder case within nine months.
The state government had also said that HC ignored the crucial aspect brought by it earlier that key witnesses did not turn up to depose in these cases due to fear and the clout wielded by the dreaded gangster, who before pronouncement of judgement in the murder case of Prasad’s two sons, allegedly conspired from the jail to eliminate his third son, Rajiv Roshan, the prime witness in the case.
It had contended that the High Court overlooked the apex court judgement, which had held as correct its decision to conduct the trial of cases against Shahabuddin from jail itself considering the threat to witnesses.