Umar Khalid – The former JNU student has been booked under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and arrested in September 2020 for instigating the North -East Delhi riots in February 2020. He made hateful speeches during the anti – hindu protests of Shaheen Bagh. “Khalid was one of the main conspirators of riots in which 53 persons died and over 700 were injured,” as stated by the Delhi Special Cell Police after they arrested Khalid.
On the 3rd,September 2021, Khalid filed a bail application in a Delhi Court under Section 439 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC). During the hearing, the Special Public Prosecutor Amit Prasad raised the issue of ‘Maintainability’ of the application as an application under Section 439 of the CrPC cannot be entertained by a Special Court. The Prosecution suggested that the accused withdraw the application and file a fresh plea under Section 437 of CrPC.
Meanwhile, Senior Advocate Trideep Pais who appeared on behalf of Khalid stated, “I have filed an application to substitute the Bail Application. I don’t want it to come in the way. There is no impediment for the Court to consider under the relevant provisions.” Adv. Pais requested the Court to allow him to continue his argument so that a “day’s time is not wasted”
Pais strongly argued that inspite of being booked under UAPA, Khalid is not communal but the officer that filed a charge-sheet against him is. Khalid was merely painted as communal by the communal officer. He said that the charge-sheet read like a script of the Amazon Prime Series ‘Family Man’. He also argued that Khalid has made no statements that can be used as Sedition and that “witness statements are being fabricated against me” and one protected witness was “speaking in forked tongues”.
Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat adjourned the matter and stated that in the case the previous bail application is withdrawn, then the Prosecutor shall follow the procedure and file a fresh reply stating that it does not want technical issues to come later on in the case.
On Monday i.e. the 6th September 2021, Khalid filed a fresh Bail Application U/s 437 of CrPC in which he stated that the Prosecution is using a Dilatory tactic. The Prosecutor objected to it and is determined to file a reply to this statement made by Khalid. “To paint prosecution that it is (using) a dilatory tactic, is something I will have to reply to.” Stated the Prosecutor.
Pais requested for the Prosecutor’s written response stating that it is not a dilatory tactic to come on record.
The Court has asked the Special Prosecutor to file a fresh reply on behalf of the Police and kept the next hearing for the 8th September.