NIA approaches Delhi High Court to get death penalty for Yasin Malik

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Friday approached the Delhi High Court seeking death penalty to separatist leader Yasin Malik, who was sentenced to life imprisonment by a trial court in a terror financing case. The agency’s plea has been listed for hearing on May 29 before a bench of Justice Siddharth Mridul and Justice Talwant Singh.

A trial court here on May 24, 2022, had sentenced Malik, the Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief, to life imprisonment after holding him guilty of various offenses under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UPA) and the Indian Penal Code.

In its plea before the High Court seeking enhancement of Malik’s sentence, the NIA said that if such “dreaded terrorists” are not given the death penalty on conviction, the terrorists would find a way to escape the death penalty.

The NIA said that life sentence is not commensurate with the crime committed by the terrorists, when the country has lost the lives of soldiers.

Rejecting the NIA’s request for the death penalty, the trial court had said that Malik’s aim was to forcefully separate Jammu and Kashmir from India.

The lower court had said, “The purpose of these crimes was to attack India and forcefully separate Jammu and Kashmir from the Union of India.” The crime becomes more serious because it was committed with the help of foreign powers and terrorists. The seriousness of the crime is further enhanced by the fact that it was committed under the guise of an allegedly peaceful political agitation.

The court had said that the case was not the “rarest of rare” in which capital punishment should be awarded.

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