Friday, September 10, 2021

Gujarat: Hijacking convict Birju Salla seeks interim bail

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat high court on Thursday asked the central government to respond to the temporary bail plea filed by a Mumbai-based businessman Birju Salla, who is undergoing life imprisonment under amended anti-hijacking laws for grounding a flight by planting a threat note in October 2017.

Salla has sought release for two weeks citing heart ailment of his father and that he is the only son and needs to tend to his father during his illness. It has also been submitted that he has not been granted bail ever since his arrest in this case, for the charges levelled against him were under the 2016 amended Anti-Hijacking Act.

The high court has also asked the central government’s counsel to inquire about Salla’s father’s illness and place a report on it on Monday. Salla was convicted in June 2019 by a special NIA court for planting a threat note in a lavatory of a Mumbai-Delhi Jet Airways flight in October 2017.

Salla’s conviction was the first conviction in the 2016 amended anti-hijacking laws. The minimum punishment prescribed upon being found guilty is life imprisonment. Besides awarding minimum sentence, the NIA court imposed a Rs 5-crore fine on Salla. From this amount, the court ordered compensation of Rs 1 lakh each to the pilot and the co-pilot, Rs 50,000 each to two flight attendants and Rs 25,000 each to all the 116 passengers on board.

10/09/21 Times of India

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