A Day in Delhi’s Courts: Congresswoman Ishrat Jahan Denied

A Day in Delhi’s Courts: Congresswoman Ishrat Jahan Denied

Davinder Singh. Image Courtesy: Dailyhunt

At a time when the Delhi Police continues to make controversial arrests in cases connected with the Delhi Riots in February, it failed to file a chargesheet in a terror case that hit headlines earlier this year, leading to the accused being released on bail.

Two significant matters were listed before Delhi’s sessions courts on Friday. PTI reported that suspended Jammu and Kashmir DSP Davinder Singh, who had been arrested while ferrying two Hizbul-Mujahideen terrorists in a vehicle on the Srinagar-Jammu Highway earlier this year, was granted bail by a Delhi court today.

In a separate matter, the news agency reported that a Delhi court refused to grant a further extension of interim bail given to former Congress Councillor Ishrat Jahan. She had been booked under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, in a case related to communal violence during protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act in north-east Delhi in February.

Singh and Irfan Shafi Mir, another accused in the case, were granted bail in a case filed by the Delhi Police’s special cell. The court noted that the agency failed to file a chargesheet in the matter even after 90 days of the duo’s arrest. Singh had been arrested on March 14, and Mir, on March 19. The bail was granted on a personal bond of Rs 1 lakh and two sureties of like amount.

Singh moved a Delhi court on Wednesday, seeking bail. In his application, his advocate said that the accused are not required further for custodial interrogation and that no purpose will be served by keeping his clients in further custody.

“The accused are wrongly and falsely implicated in the case. There is no material/ evidence to show the existence of any conspiracy to commit any act with intent to threaten or likely to threaten the unity, integrity, security or sovereignty of India and there is also no material to substantiate that the accused had the intention or conspired to carry out terror strike,” the application said.

Singh was suspended from the Jammu and Kashmir Police in January this year. The Special Cell had brought him to Delhi from Hira Nagar Jail in Jammu and Kashmir.

He was arrested in a case related to planning/ execution of terror attacks in Delhi and other parts of the country. According to the police, he used to chat with other co-accused and militants of Hizbul Mujahideen through various internet platforms.

Earlier, the police had told the court that Sayed Naveed Mushtaq, the commander of Shopian district of Hizbul Mujahideen, and others were planning to execute terror attacks in Delhi and other parts of the country as well as carrying out targeted killings of protected persons.

“Mushtaq, along with other militants of Hizbul Mujahideen, was planning to execute terror attack in Delhi and other parts of the country and targeted killings of protected persons,” the police told the court.

Delhi Police has filed an FIR under Section 120B (criminal conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The FIR said the youths of Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab are being trained for carrying out terrorist activities.

While Singh is now out on bail, the same is not the case for Congresswoman Ishrat Jahan. Additional Sessions Judge Dharmender Rana directed Jahan to surrender in jail on Friday, and asked the Jail Superintendent to ensure adequate medical care to her.

Jahan had sought an extension for seven days to the interim bail granted earlier to her till June 19, to get married. Her advocate said that Jahan got married on June 12, and subsequently, her husband came in contact with a relative who had tested positive for COVID-19.

In her bail application, her counsel said that Jahan’s husband had been advised to undergo a test for COVID-19, and that Jahan had also developed symptoms. The application said that doctors of Max Superspeciality Hospital, Patparganj, have advised her for seven days of home isolation before a COVID-19 test.

During the hearing held through video conferencing, the advocate told the court that her husband’s test report has been found negative. In his report, the Investigating Officer of the Delhi police said that the concerned doctor had not prescribed any test and that it has been reported that it was a simple case of the flu.

“I have no specific reasons to doubt the report of the IO or the advice of the concerned medical expert. It is a settled principle of law that interim bail can only be granted in exceptional circumstances. Mere apprehensions cannot constitute a valid ground for extension of interim bail. Considering the totality of circumstances, especially the opinion of the doctor and the nature of offence, no ground for extension of interim bail is made out in favour of the accused (Jahan),” the judge said in his order.

Jahan, who is also an advocate, has been booked under the anti-terror law in a case related to communal violence in north-east Delhi between February 23 and February 26.

Besides Jahan, Jamia Millia Islamia University students Asif Iqbal Tanha, Gulfisha Khatoon, Jamia Coordination Committee members Safoora Zargar, Meeran Haider, President of Jamia Alumni Association Shifa-Ur-Rehman, suspended AAP Councillor Tahir Hussain, activist Khalid, JNU students Natasha Narwal and Devangana Kalita and former student leader Umar Khalid have also been booked under the anti-terror law in the case.

The Delhi Riots had resulted in the deaths of at least 53 persons and close to 200 people were injured.

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