Parts of northeast Delhi gripped by a communal frenzy in February this year were reminiscent of carnage during the days of partition, a Delhi court has observed while dismissing the anticipatory bail plea of an accused in connection with a case related to the murder of Intelligence Bureau staffer Ankit Sharma during the violence.
Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Yadav, in his order on Thursday, said that the riots spread like wildfire across the smoke-grey skyline of the national capital engulfing new areas and snuffing out more and more innocent lives.
The court made the observations while dismissing the anticipatory bail plea of Muntajim alias Musa, who had moved the court for relief citing the medical ground of his wife’s illness.
“I have also gone through the medical documents qua the wife of the applicant filed along with the application. Most of the documents are prescription slips and one ultrasound report, all of which pertain to the year 2018 and are not recent ones. In any way, the said medical documents are of no help to the applicant, as the same do not prima facie establishes that the wife of the applicant is suffering from any serious ailment or otherwise,” the order said.
“…..Considering the facts and circumstances of the case in totality vis-a-vis gravity of the offence, I do not find it to be a fit case for grant of anticipatory bail to the applicant. The application for anticipatory bail is accordingly dismissed,” it added.
The court also noted that the custodial interrogation of the applicant is necessary to unearth the conspiracy for planning, instigating and executing the riot action plan. “The allegations against the applicant are grave in nature. His presence/custodial interrogation is also necessary for his identification by way of judicial Test Identification Parade from public witnesses,” it noted.
Advocate Mohd Athar, representing the applicant, submitted that he has been falsely roped in the matter merely on the basis of disclosure statements made by co-accused persons and added that he has not been captured either in any CCTV footage or any viral videos.
“His call detail records location is of no help to the investigating agency as he is resident of the same locality. It is further argued that the applicant has not been identified by any of the public witnesses cited in the matter,” Mr Athar submitted.
Special Public Prosecutor Manoj Chaudhary strongly opposed the anticipatory bail and submitted that this is an unfortunate case of the brutal murder of a young officer of Intelligence Bureau by the riotous mob in the evening of February 25 and added that the applicant was an active member of the said riotous mob.
“It is emphasised that the applicant is a resident of Nand Nagri and his presence at the scene of the crime at the time of the incident was not natural. His CDR location has been found to be at the scene of the crime on both February 24 and 25, when the intensity of the communal riots was maximum,” Mr Chaudhary submitted.
Mr Chaudhary further argued that CDR analysis qua the mobile phone of the applicant clearly establishes that he had been in regular touch with two co-accused persons, both of whom played an active role in the murder of Shri Ankit Sharma.
“Co-accused Haseen had in his disclosure statement categorically admitted to having stabbed Ankit Sharma number of times with his knife and his accomplices having hit him with ”dandas” and thereafter throwing his body in the ”nala”,” he added.
At least 53 people were killed and hundreds of others were injured in the violence that took place in northeast Delhi between February 24 and 26 sparked by clashes between groups supporting and opposing the Citizenship Amendment Act.
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