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Don't talk to media in Salem case, CBI told

Mumbai: A TADA court on Monday restrained the Central Bureau of Investigation from disclosing any information to the media on the investigations involving the extradited underworld don Abu Salem.

Designated TADA Judge P.D. Kode, hearing Salem's application to allow his lawyer to be present during interrogation, said that "having regard to the delicacy of the matter as well as the manner in which the accused was brought to India, it required to avoid unwanted sensation and speculation being created in society that would affect the progressing trial."

The court directed the CBI not to disclose or forward any information to the media. It held that it did not want to comment on the past but hoped that the investigating agency knew its responsibility and limitations, considering the gravity of the case.

Supreme Court ruling

Salem's counsel O.S. Siddique said that the Supreme Court, in a ruling, had said defence counsel could be present in an investigator's office during interrogation of an accused.

The apex court had said the defence lawyer should be allowed to remain present during any investigation, not at the visual level but at least on an audible level so that they could hear the accused.

No confession

The CBI clarified on Monday that Salem had not made any confessional statement and whatever material they had gathered during interrogation was oral.

The court had adjourned the hearing of Salem's plea till November 16 with a direction to the CBI to file its reply.

While talking to mediapersons, Mr. Siddique, who met Salem for more than half an hour during the day, said the former told him that neither had he given any confessional statement nor named any of the persons, as reported in a section of the media. "Salem was looking depressed and admitted that the CBI is interrogating him," he said. — UNI

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