Law of Karma catches up with the ‘Terrorist’ Lawyer

published on February 11, 2010

26/11 lawyer shot dead

TN Raghunatha | Mumbai – Daily Pioneer

In a sensational shootout, advocate Shahid Azmi — one of the defence lawyers in the 26/11 attacks case — was gunned down by unidentified assailants at his Kurla office-cum-residence in Mumbai on Thursday evening.

Police said “three to four” persons barged into the office at Kurla’s Taximen’s colony located behind Bandra-Kurla complex at around 7.40 pm. They fired four rounds at Azmi at point blank range.

Azmi (34) was lawyer to Fahim Ansari. He succumbed to bullet wounds before he was admitted to Rajawadi Hospital at Ghatkopar. The motive behind the murder has not been established yet.

“We are trying to ascertain if there were three or four assailants. Azmi had received threats from underworld don Ravi Pujari a few years ago but I am not aware of any recent threats,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police Milind Bharambe.

Azmi’s client Fahim — co-accused with Mohammed Kasab and Sabauddin Ahmed Shabbir Ahmed Shaikh — is being tried in the 26/11 case for carrying out reconnaissance for the attacks and providing route maps and sketches to terror targets in Mumbai. The 10 terrorists, including Kasab, had made use of the ground work done by Fahim and Sabauddin.

Azmi had, in the past, represented several accused in blast cases including those for the July 11, 2006 serial train bombings.

A person with criminal antecedents, Azmi was arrested in December 1992 for his alleged involvement in the 1992-93 communal riots in the metropolis. Booked for an offence registered under the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act (TADA), he was awarded a five-year sentence in 1999. He was acquitted by the Supreme Court later that year.

Azmi completed his graduation during 1992-96, from behind bars. After the apex court acquitted him, he completed his LLB and became a criminal lawyer.

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