31 Jan 2023 5:53 AM GMT
A Delhi Court on Monday discharged Babu Wasim, who was accused of an providing gun to Shahrukh Pathan, an accused in a Northeast Delhi riots case. The weapon was allegedly used by Pathan for firing at a policeman during the 2020 riots.Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat discharged Wasim under section 25 of Arms Act. However, charge under section 174A (non-appearance in response to...
A Delhi Court on Monday discharged Babu Wasim, who was accused of an providing gun to Shahrukh Pathan, an accused in a Northeast Delhi riots case. The weapon was allegedly used by Pathan for firing at a policeman during the 2020 riots.
Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat discharged Wasim under section 25 of Arms Act. However, charge under section 174A (non-appearance in response to a proclamation) of Indian Penal Code was framed against him.
Wasim was arrested on April 13 last year.
The prosecution had alleged that Wasim provided a pistol and rounds to Pathan on December 6, 2019 which was then used for “firing and also attempting on the life of a head constable” during the riots. Wasim was accused of the offence under Section 25 of Arms Act.
The FIR relates to an incident wherein Pathan was captured pointing a gun towards a policeman during the riots. The pictures of it had gone viral on the social media.
The FIR was registered at Jafrabad police station under Sections 147 (rioting), 148 (Rioting, armed with deadly weapon), 149 (unlawful assembly), 153A (Promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion etc), 186 (Obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 188 (Disobedience to an order lawfully promulgated by a public servant) 307 (Attempt to murder), 353 (Assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 505 (Statements conducing to public mischief), 120B (Criminal conspiracy) and 34 (common intention) of IPC along with Section 27 (Punishment for using arms, etc) of Arms Act.
As per the police, on the night of December 6, 2019, Pathan made repeated calls to Wasim. It was alleged that location chart of both the accused showed that at the end of last call, they were at the same place. It was also alleged that both of them had met each other and Wasim gave the pistol to Pathan.
The prosecution had relied upon the disclosure statement of both the accused persons and also on the successive calls made between the two.
Discharging Wasim under section 25 of Arms Act, the court said that disclosure statements, by themselves, are not admissible in law, adding that there is no witness on record to show that Wasim provided the pistol to Pathan or that he possessed it before December 6, 2019.
On four calls between Pathan and Wasim, the court said that it, at best, shows that they were at the same spot at the same time or met each other. The court added that there is nothing on record to substantiate the allegation that Wasim possessed the pistol or delivered it to Pathan.
The judge also said that even the Sanction Order under Section 39 Arms Act issued by police was “without proper appreciation of material on record or evidence collected by IO.”
“The case against accused Babu Wasim is essentially based on surmises and conjectures rather than actual material/evidence. There is no ground to presume that accused Babu Wasim committed offence under Section 25 Arms Act. He is accordingly discharged for the said offence,” the court said.
The court in December 2021 framed charges against Pathan and other accused in the FIR in question. It had also convicted a man for harbouring Shahrukh Pathan under sec. 216 of IPC after he had voluntarily pleaded guilty to the charge framed against him.