A Delhi Court on Wednesday sent Iqbal Singh, one of the alleged instigators of the violence that erupted after the tractor rally on January 26 to seven-day police custody remand.
Singh, who was arrested by the Special Cell from Hoshiarpur in Punjab, was produced before Duty Magistrate Poorva Mehra. While the matter was taken up, the Delhi Police sought 10-day custody of Singh saying that Iqbal is one of the main conspirators and is from Punjab.
“His supporters come from various parts of Punjab. There are 100s of videos. We need to confront him with all these videos. The people who came with him, who are those people? Who are they affiliated with? We need to find all those links,” the police said.
It was also argued by police that the chain of events which occurred on January 26 were not a random occurrence and were well planned.
“This was a big conspiracy. We need to find his link to Deep Sidhu. The manner in which the flag was hoisted, you saw how fast he went up. Special ropes were brought, specific tractors were made,”
However, in his defence, Iqbal submitted that he never came to Red Fort to do violence. “I reached Red fort just like that, did not think I’d reach there. But when I reached, emotions around flared up. Whatever I did is on my live,” he said. The police then countered his claims and said that it wasn’t the first time he visited the capital. “He stayed near Sis Ganj Gurdwara on January 25. He didn’t just come to Red Fort,” the police said.
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The police also informed the court that Singh had asked the mob to hit the police on the head with sticks. “He is among the main instigators,” it said.
Iqbal responded that whatever he said was in the heat of the moment. “Whatever I said was in the heat of the moment. It’s all on my live. But no police was hit nor was there any instigation on my side,” Iqbal told the court.
Before granting remand, the court questioned the police as to why it needs his custodial remand.
“We need to establish where his funding is coming from. We need to go to Punjab and look into his news channel. Where the equipment is, how it’s kept, whether it’s been destroyed,”
-the police responded.
It was also informed by the police that during sustained interrogation, he revealed that he ran that news channel on which there’s a 1 hr 15 min live. After the arguments, the court sent Singh to seven days police custody and directed them to produce him before the court next on February 18.
Singh, who was among the eight key suspects in the case against whom the city police had announced a reward, was arrested from Hoshiarpur in Punjab on Tuesday night, said DCP (Special Cell) Sanjeev Kumar Yadav. The DCP also said there was a Rs 50,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of Singh, who is the third suspect to have been caught so far.
Initially, the police had identified him as the one who allegedly did a Facebook Live from the fort during the violence on Republic Day.
The police had accused him of allegedly instigating the crowd and his presence at Red Fort was confirmed with his Facebook Live as well as other video footage in which he can be seen.