On Friday, September 1, a special court of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in Jaipur granted bail to Farhad Mohammad alias Babla. Farhad was arrested in connection with the murder of tailor Kanhaiya Lal in Rajasthan’s Udaipur last year. He was charge-sheeted under the provisions of the Arms Act.
The accused Farhad Mohammad’s counsel, Akhil Chaudhary, claimed Farhad was not involved in the killing of Kanhaiya Lal and that the sword recovered from him was a blunt one. He claimed that Farhad Mohammad and his family are artisans involved in meenakari, a process of painting and colouring metal and ceramic tile surfaces. Mohammad and his family painted and decorated such things and sold them in local marketplaces, according to the counsel, and Mohammad was not charged with UAPA or criminal conspiracy.
It is worth recalling that Farhad Mohammad was apprehended after a sword was recovered from his possession last year. According to Advocate Chaudhary, Farhad purchased the sword in a khadi mela a long time back, adding that according to the forensic report, it was a blunt sword.
The NIA’s Special Public Prosecutor, TP Sharma, contested the bail plea, noting the discovery of the sword and arguing that he had joined a protest gathering against the then BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma and raised inflammatory slogans.
Farhad’s lawyer, on the other hand, stated that his client had attended the protest but he was not leading the said protest.
Farhad, 31, was charged by the NIA under Section 4/25 (1B) (b) of the Arms Act of 1959. Farhad was granted bail by special NIA court judge Ravindra Kumar. Following Farhad’s arrest in July of last year, the NIA issued a statement stating that Farhad was a close associate of the main killer, Riyaz Attari, and was actively involved in the conspiracy to murder tailor Kanhaiya Lal.
Kanhaiya Lal murder case
On the dreadful day of June 28 last year, two Islamists identified as Riyaz and Ghous Mohammad brutally beheaded a poor Hindu tailor Kanhaiya Lal in Udaipur, Rajasthan. He was murdered for posting a social media message in support of former BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma. The murderers had also made a video boasting about their heinous act, basking in false bravado over killing the hapless poor man inside his shop.
The Islamists, who had entered the shop pretending to be customers, slit Kanhaiya Lal’s throat and stabbed him around 26 times on his body, especially on the neck. They also recorded the murder and released it on social media platforms. After the incident, the killers released a video claiming responsibility for the act. The duo had also later threatened PM Modi with murder.