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'UAPA Rightly Invoked' : Delhi Court Denies Bail To Student Activist Devangana Kalita In Riots Conspiracy Case

Sparsh Upadhyay
29 Jan 2021 8:24 AM GMT
UAPA Rightly Invoked : Delhi Court Denies Bail To Student Activist Devangana Kalita In Riots Conspiracy Case
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The Karkardooma Court (Delhi) on Thursday (28th January) dismissed the Bail application moved by Pinjra Tod Activist Devangana Kalita while noting that the provisions of UAPA have been rightly invoked against in connection with Delhi Riots case. The Additional Sessions Amitabh Rawat dismissed her application while taking into account that as per the investigation, there was a...

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The Karkardooma Court (Delhi) on Thursday (28th January) dismissed the Bail application moved by Pinjra Tod Activist Devangana Kalita while noting that the provisions of UAPA have been rightly invoked against in connection with Delhi Riots case.

The Additional Sessions Amitabh Rawat dismissed her application while taking into account that as per the investigation, there was a premeditated conspiracy of the disruptive chakka­jam and a preplanned protest at different planned sites in Delhi resulting in riots killing scores of people, injuring hundreds and causing destruction to the property.

The Court remarked,

"The entire conspiracy beginning from December 2019 of intentionally blocking roads to cause inconvenience and causing disrupting of the supplies of services, essential to the life of community of India resulting in violence with various means and then leading to February incident with the focus being targeted blocking of roads at mixed population areas and creating panic and attack on police personnel with facade of women protesters in front and leading to riots would be covered by the definition of terrorist act."

The Court further observed,

"Acts which threaten the unity and integrity of India, in as much as causing social disharmony and creating terror in any section of the people, by making them feel surrounded resulting in violence, is also a terrorist act."

Regarding Kalita's role, the Court noted,

"The accused (Kalita) played an active role in the riots by road blocks and disruptive chakka­jam, provocative speeches, instigation of women for stock piling sticks, bottles, acid, stones, chilly­powder for the purpose of riots."

The Court also observed that the accused Devangana Kalita, alongwith Natasha, Gulfisha and others of Pinjra Tod Group, in furtherance of their conspiracy, established a 24 x 7 sit­ting protest at 66 Foota Road, Seelampur Delhi on 15th JANUARY 2020.

Noting that she was part of a multi­layered conspiracy and in regular touch and reporting to the higher conspirator of Delhi Protest Support Group, the Court observed,

"Devangana Kalita with other accused mobilized the women of Seelampur Protest site and occupied the Jafrabad Metro Station blocking the Main 66 Foota Road. She distributed chilly powder to the women and instigated them to attack police personnel and start riots"

The Court also noted that as per the statement of protected witnesses under Section 164 Cr.P.C are taken into account, there is sufficient incriminating material against Kalita.

Lastly, on the perusal of the charge­sheet and accompanying documents, for the limited purpose of the bail, the Court was of the opinion that allegations against the accused Devangana Kalita are prima facie true.

In view of the above discussion, the Court said,

"Since there are reasonable grounds for believing that the accusation against the accused Devangana Kalita are prima facie true, hence, embargo created by Section 43D of UAPA applies for grant of bail to the accused."



[NOTE: as per Section 43D(5) of UAPA, if the court is of the opinion on the perusal of the charge sheet that there are reasonable grounds for believing that the accusation against such person is prima facie true, then, the accused shall not be released on bail.

Also, As decided by the Apex Court in the case of NIA v Zafoor Ahmad Shah Watali, "it is the duty of the Court to be satisfied that there are reasonable grounds for believing that the accusation against the accused is prima facie true or otherwise".

In this backdrop, in the instant case, the totality of the material as contained in the contents of the charge sheet including the supplementary charge sheet and annexures were looked into by the Court and thereafter the Court concluded that she was not entitled to Bail.]

Hence, the application for bail of accused Devangana Kalita was dismissed.

Yesterday, the same court had denied bail to another 'Pinjra Tod' activist, Natasha Narawal, in the riots conspiracy case.

Both Kalita and Narwal were arrested by Delhi police on May 24, 2020, and they have been under custody since then.

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