2020 Delhi Riots: Court Rejects Anticipatory Bail of Accused, Directs Police To Conduct Proper Investigation

A court here has rejected the anticipatory bail of an accused in a case pertaining to the 2020 northeast Delhi riots and directed the Delhi Police to conduct a proper investigation into the case.

The court was hearing the pre-arrest bail plea of Sunder against whom Bhajanpura police station had registered a case for various offences, including for rioting and arson.

“The report (by the investigating officer) shows that till the time of moving this application, the applicant remained untraceable by the police. Moreover, his name has been taken by several eyewitnesses and he is also reported to be appearing in the video footage and in these circumstances, I do not find the applicant entitled to pre-arrest bail,” Additional Sessions Judge Pulastya Pramachala said in an order passed on Wednesday.

The court rejected the argument of Sunder’s advocate that the applicant was granted bail in two other cases registered at the same police station, saying it could not be a “guiding factor” to decide the bail application in the present case.

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“At the same time, I am not very much satisfied with the kind of investigation done in the case, wherein no attempt has been made to recover any looted materials. Hence, the matter is referred to the station house officer (SHO) to ensure that a proper investigation is done in this case…IO shall hand over a copy of this order to SHO for compliance,” the court said.

The court noted the IO’s reply, according to which Sunder had joined the investigation on March 6 and allegedly in his disclosure statement, he confessed to having looted and vandalised several stores, including mobile phone shops.

“But surprisingly neither anything has been said about an attempt made to recover the looted articles, nor the requirement of further investigation or interrogation of the applicant and on the contrary, IO reports that custodial interrogation is not required,” the court said noting the reply.

The court also noted that the IO said nothing has been done to recover the looted articles.

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