Yasin Malik appears virtually in Jammu court after centre denies ‘in person’ appearance

Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief Yasin Malik, who is lodged in Delhi’s Tihar prison in a “terror funding case”, appeared virtually in a special court in Jammu on Wednesday after the Centre turned down his request to appear in person, Hindustan Times reported.

The court on September 20 issued Malik’s production warrants to the jail authorities after he sought to appear in person to cross-examine the prosecution witnesses in two cases related to the killing of four Indian Air Force (IAF) personnel and the abduction of Rubaiya Sayeed, daughter of then Union home minister Mufti Muhammad Sayeed, in 1989

The Tihar prison authorities cited directions from the Union home ministry and told the court that Malik cannot be produced before it in person. The court will hear the matter related to IAF personnel on November 23.

Senior advocate SK Bhat, who appeared on behalf of the prosecution, said the Tihar jail superintendent informed the court that Malik’s travel to Jammu was not possible. He added the superintendent said an appeal related to Malik’s sentence in the terror funding case is pending before the high court and he has to remain lodged in Tihar jail.

Bhat said the abduction case will be taken up on Thursday. “She [Rubaiya Sayeed] has been summoned. She may appear. Malik will be virtually present in that case also.” He said Malik has been given a fair trial and that the court offered legal aid but he refused.

The special court in March 2020 framed charges against Malik and six others for their alleged involvement in the killing of four unarmed IAF personnel in January 1990 at Rawalpora in Srinagar.