The Bombay high court on Wednesday allowed extradited gangster Abu Salem to withdraw his petition challenging the separation of his trial from that of the rest of the accused in the 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts case.
The court asked Salem to approach the Supreme Court, as he has raised some important issues that the high court cannot hear.
A division bench of Justice J N Patel and Justice Roshan Dalvi also refused a plea to stay framing of charges in other cases against Salem, saying that he was free to apply to respective courts trying those cases for this purpose.
While passing this order, the judges also remarked that, "It is high time the TADA judge pronounced the judgment in the 1993 bomb blast case."
Salem's lawyer Nitin Pradhan had said that according to the extradition treaty between Portugal and India, Salem was to be tried only for specified cases, and separating his case from rest of the 1993 case amounted to starting a new case against him, which violated the treaty.
Similarly, Pradhan said charges were framed after interrogating him, while the extradition treaty contemplated only trial and not fresh interrogation. But the Central Bureau of Investigation objected to Salem's coming to high court, stating that as per TADA, all appeals would lie directly in the Supreme Court.