Ernakulam: The Kerala High Court declined to suspend the conviction of Lakshadweep MP Mohammed Faizal in an attempted murder case. Nevertheless, Justice N. Nagaresh did suspend his sentence of imprisonment. However, Mohammed Faizal will lose his MP position after being disqualified once again.
The petitioner, Mohammed Faizal, along with three others, were convicted and received prison sentences, ranging from one month to ten years, from the Kavaratti Sessions Court. These sentences were imposed under different sections of the Indian Penal Code in connection with their attempted murder of Mohammed Salih, who was the son-in-law of the former Union Minister P M Sayeed during the 2009 Lok Sabha elections.
Mohammed Faizal was elected as a Member of Parliament in both 2014 and 2019. Mohammed Faizal and his co-defendants then appealed against their sentences to the High Court.
On January 25, 2023, the Kerala High Court suspended Mohammed Faizal’s conviction and sentence, as well as the sentences imposed on the others involved. Following this, the Union Territory of Lakshadweep and the complainant filed an appeal with the Supreme Court challenging the suspension of the conviction order.
In an order dated August 22, 2023, the Supreme Court directed the High Court to review the suspension of conviction within a six-week period. The Apex Court also instructed that the suspension of conviction should remain in effect during this period, allowing Mohammed Faizal to maintain his position as a Member of Parliament (MP) representing Lakshadweep.
During the proceedings, Senior Advocate Kapil Sibal had represented Mohammed Faizal before the High Court and contended that not suspending the conviction order could lead to irreversible injustice.