Police ‘tried to pull the wool over our eyes’: Court raps Delhi police over 2020 riots case, discharges 3 accused

Expressing serious objection over the Delhi police to carry out an unbiased probe into 2020 riots case, court in Delhi on Thursday, discharged former AAP councillor Tahir Hussain’s brother Shah Alam and two others accused of rioting and various offences.

The court also called the probe “callous and indolent.” The Northeast Delhi violence had killed about 53 people and around 200 people were injured.

Criticising the police, Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Yadav said the case was a “colossal wastage of the hard-earned money of taxpayers in which the Delhi police merely tried to pull the wool over the court’s eyes and nothing else.”

While looking at the facts of the case, the court also noted that there was no CCTV footage of the incident to confirm the presence of the accused at the spot, no eye witness, and therefore no evidence regarding the criminal conspiracy.

The Court observed that its failure to conduct a proper investigation using latest scientific methods will “torment” the sentinels of democracy when history will look back at the worst communal riots in the Delhi since partition.

Further pointing out at the case, Judge Yadav said it seemed to have been solved merely by filing the charge sheet without any real effort to track down the eye witnesses, real accused, and technical evidence. The investigation also lacked sensitivity and skillfulness, he observed.

“This court cannot permit such cases to meander mindlessly in the corridors of the judicial system, sweeping away precious judicial time of this court when the same is the open and shut case,” the judge noted.

Therefore after investigating this matter for so long, the court observed that the Delhi police presented only five witnesses, the victim, Duty Officer, formal witness, investigating officer (IO), and a constable, who had identified the three accused.

The delay on the part of the constable to report the incident gives an impression that he has been planted in the 2020 riots case, the judge said.

The Delhi court said real or effective investigation has not been conducted and the police have just tried to present the case as “solved” merely by recording the statement of the constable, that too at a belated stage.

“The evidence brought on record by the investigating agency, miserably falls short for framing charges against the three accused persons. Accordingly, all the accused persons are discharged from the case,” the judge added.

Acquitted Shah Alam’s brother Tahir Hussain was arrested under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in the Delhi riots conspiracy case and currently he is in judicial custody. He is also accused in several other cases.

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