MUMBAI: After getting a reprieve from the Portugal Supreme Court, underworld don Abu Salem suffered a setback as his plea to close the case was rejected by the trial court here on Tuesday.
Salem is being tried under the Terrorists And Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act and the special court dismissed his plea for closure after the CBI raised objection on the grounds that the Supreme Court order is being challenged before the Constitutional Court in Portugal. The Portugal court had upheld the order of the lower court terminating his extradition for violation of deportation rules by the Indian authorities. The extradition was terminated on the grounds that India went back on its commitment that it would not press any charge against Salem that would attract death penalty.
The CBI contended before the TADA court that the extradition of Salem was being dealt with by the Indian government and the Portuguese government, and there was no significant development to stop the trial. In case India antagonises Portugal by pressing ahead with TADA charges, it would close the door for any further extradition. This would make Portugal as the most desired ‘destination’ for fugitives wanted in India.