Friday, December 8, 2023

Delhi Riots 2020: Court pulls up Delhi Police for clubbing 39 complaints, orders separate probe against 3 accused

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Coming down heavily on Delhi Police for clubbing 39 complaints in two cases related to the Delhi Riots 2020 against three accused based on hearsay evidence, a Delhi court has ordered separate probes into the complaints.

Additional Sessions Judge Pulastya Pramachala, delivering similar orders in two complaints, observed that there was no evidence on record to even confirm the date and time of the alleged incidents mentioned in the additional 39 complainants.

The court also said that the star witnesses of the prosecution for identification of the three accused persons in both the cases did not say anything about witnessing the incident reported by the additional complainants.

Calling the stand of the prosecution to prosecute all the aforesaid additional complaints with the FIR lodged in this case as ‘fallacious,’ the court noted that additional complaints were not completely investigated to even confirm the date and time of such incidents, on the basis of relevant evidence. 

It said the statement given by the additional complainants showed that their knowledge about time and date of incident was based on information given to them by some different persons. 

It added that the IO asked about particulars of the informers from additional complainants at a much belated time by which they showed their inability to furnish particulars of the present whereabouts of such informers. 

The ASJ observed that the statements dated February 9, 2023 could not be a basis to make the hearsay evidence of the additional complainants regarding time and date of incidents at their respective places to be the relevant evidence to establish the time and date of such incidents.

It said the conclusion on investigation on the additional complaints was incomplete, adding that the same could not be clubbed for prosecution in this FIR. 

Noting that the additional complaints required further and thorough investigation to reach a particular conclusion, the court directed the SHO concerned to take up all the above-mentioned additional complaints for further investigation separately, in accordance with law in order to take them to a logical conclusion.

The development ensued in two different FIRs registered against the accused namely Javed, Gulfam and Pappu alias Mustkeem. 

FIR 100 of 2020 was registered at Dayalpur police station on the basis of a complaint of one Aftab alleging that the rioters looted his shop and set some article lying therein on fire. Police clubbed 17 more complaints with the FIR during investigation.

In the second case, FIR 116 of 2020 was registered at Dayalpur police station on the basis of a complaint of one Zameer Ahmed alleging looting in his shop. Police clubbed 22 additional complaints for probe.

Making similar observations in two separate orders, the court said that even though the IO placed on record several site plans to show the proximity of different places, however, such proximity could not be a ground to presume that all incidents reported by additional complainants took place at the same time and by the same mob.

However, the court found that the shop of both the primary complainants in the two cases were vandalised by a mob, which included the accused persons.

Noting that a case was made out against the accused, the court found them guilty for offences punishable under Sections  148/380/427/435/452 IPC read with Section 149 IPC and under Section 188 IPC. The accused were discharged for offence under Section 436 IPC in the present case.

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