The NIA court on Friday has rejected the plea of suspended API Sachin Vaze to meet his lawyer privately. Sachin Vaze is being probed by the NIA for his role in planting an explosive-laden car near Mukesh Ambani’s residence, Antilia, and his role in the suspected murder of the owner of the Scorpio car in which explosives were laden, Mansukh Hiren.
The Special Public Prosecutor (SSP) has told the NIA court that Sachin Vaze is not cooperating in the interrogation. SSP further contended that “My basic purpose will be failed if we allow them to meet.”
Abad Ponda, the lawyer for Sachin Vaze contended that the investigation is at a ‘crucial stage’ and that, he should be allowed to meet his client (Sachin Vaze). “The investigation is at a crucial stage, please allow me to meet my client during non-interrogation hours; let’s not infringe on my fundamental rights”, he said.
Vaze’s lawyer further claimed that whenever they have been present at NIA, the interrogation was not conducted. Ponda further argued that they have set up camp at a near-by hotel so they can immediately be present at NIA when the interrogation takes place, however, they were never called. “We have also booked one room at Shalimar hotel near the office so that we can immediately reach to see my client during his interrogation”, he said.
After hearing both parties, Sachin Vaze and the Special Public Prosecutor, the NIA judge ruled that his previous order was clear in its ruling.
Judge Sitre had passed an order saying that a lawyer of Waze’s choice will be present at a visible distance during his interrogation by NIA but not at a hearing distance. Essentially, the order meant that the lawyers will be able to watch NIA interrogating Sachin Vaze, however, they will not privy to the questions being asked of him.
Interestingly, another application was rejected by the NIA court. An application moved by Sachin Vaze’s lawyer sought time to meet Vaze between the interrogations, however, the judge rejected this application as well.
Sachin Vaze – an accused in the Antilia bomb scare case
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) arrested ‘encounter specialist’ Sachin Vaze for being a part of the group that planted the explosive-laden Scorpio on Carmichael Road (near Antilia) on February 25.
The top cop was also investigated for his alleged role in the death of Mansukh Hiren, the owner of the Scorpio found near the Ambani residence.
Two cars – an Innova (white colour) and a Scorpio (green colour) were used to plant the bombs outside Mukesh Ambani’s residence in Mumbai on February 25. The police had traced the Scorpio to Mansukh Hiren, an auto part dealer in Thane.
A few days later, his dead body was found in a creek. While initially it was claimed to be suicide, further investigation revealed that it is possibly a murder. After Mansukh Hiren’s death, his wife, Vimla Hiren alleged that the vehicle was lent out to Sachin Vaze for four months till February 5. After that, it was reported stolen. She had accused Vaze of killing her husband.
Later, it was found out that Mumbai top cop Sachin Vaze had used the same explosive-laden Scorpio found outside Reliance Group’s chief Mukesh Ambani’s residence Antilia to escort Alibagh Police in Arnab case.
Earlier, the National Investigative Agency officials had also recovered the white Innova car from the Mumbai Police Commissionerate office. A white Innova was also suspected to be used, in addition to the Scorpio, to plant the bombs outside Mukesh Ambani’s residence in Mumbai on February 25.