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Delhi Riots | Protests Were Inorganic, Meticulously Planned; Local People Used As Fodder: Prosecution Opposes Umar Khalid's Bail

Nupur Thapliyal
29 Jan 2022 9:29 AM GMT
Delhi Riots | Protests Were Inorganic, Meticulously Planned; Local People Used As Fodder: Prosecution Opposes Umar Khalids Bail
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Opposing Umar Khalid's bail in the Delhi riots larger conspiracy case, the prosecution on Saturday told a Delhi Court that the 2020 protest was neither organic nor women driven and that local people were used as fodder to increase public participation. Special Public Prosecutor Amit Prasad today also made common submissions opposing bail pleas of other accused persons in the case including...

Opposing Umar Khalid's bail in the Delhi riots larger conspiracy case, the prosecution on Saturday told a Delhi Court that the 2020 protest was neither organic nor women driven and that local people were used as fodder to increase public participation.

Special Public Prosecutor Amit Prasad today also made common submissions opposing bail pleas of other accused persons in the case including Khalid Saifi, Meera Haider, Salim Malik and Saleem Khan.

Placing heavy reliance on the WhatsApp chats of various members in the Delhi Protest Support Group (DPSG), Prasad told Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat that not only were the protests inorganic, but also that they lacked support from local population living in the areas of various protest sites.

Arguing so, Prasad submitted that people were imported from other areas to join the protests in order to increase participation. He also added that local uneducated masses were used as fodder by the members of the group.

"Locals are not supporting, while they are not supporting, you are importing. You come out on messages on Facebook. In those messages, I think, they are quite educated to not say what they are eventually doing," Prasad submitted.

Pointing towards the alleged involvement of co-accused Natasha Narwal who joined the group on January 15, 2020, Prasad specifically referred to her message saying "appeal to join women's March at Jafrabad in evening at 6:30 PM".

He thus argued "When locals are not supporting, who are these people who are coming? It is women who are being brought from outside."

Prasad further submitted that all the protest sites were consciously chosen in those areas which were situated in the "poorest of poor" parts of the city.

"These locations are in very narrow areas. Therefore, object was to use these population as fodder. I'll show this from their own messages," he added.

"You are creating protest sites in Muslim dominating areas, in poorest localities in Delhi, wanting to create a secular facade."

"There was no local involvement. They were all being organized by various teams. Seelampur Natasha, sent by Rahul Roy to handle that. In Khureji, Inderlok, Kadampuri managed by UAH team. This is what we have shown in our chargesheet," Prasad argued.

He also argued that artists and entertainment methods were used in order to attract people to participate in the protests as a part of the conspiracy.

"This is needed because normal person is very happy doing what they are doing. They have to earn their livelihood. Normal woman would be doing their household job. They are not interested in your civil society or agenda based protest. But at the same time, each one of us gets attracted to some entertainment. You need "damru baazi" for entertainment. The mass doesn't know what is it for, it gets attracted to damru. And you do it for a particular time," Prasad said.

Main thrust of Prasad's arguments was that the DPSG group was a highly sensitive group wherein every small message was privately deliberated upon and then passed forward to other members. Every decision taken was conscious and well thought over, he said.

He submitted that while the case of the prosecution is not that every person who surfaces in the conspiracy has to be made an accused and that merely being silent on a group does not make one an accused, however, he added that in case evidence is found against any person, criminal action has to follow.

"Material shows that knives, stones, red chilly powder was collected at that spot only. Therefore merely to say that someone has not responded will not completely make him criminal. But when we find evidence, then legal action has to be taken. There is no time frame for this," Prasad submitted.

The matter will now be heard on Monday.

Yesterday, the prosecution had argued that the issue regarding the 2020 protests was not CAA or NRC but to embarrass the Government and to take such steps that it gets highlighted in the International media.

"Agenda Was Not CAA-NRC But To Embarrass Govt In International Media": Prosecution Opposes Umar Khalid's Bail In Delhi Riots Case

Earlier this week, Prasad had submitted that the 2020 sit-in protests were carefully planned, picking strategic protest sites closer to 25 mosques. He argued that these sites were places with religious significance but were purposely given Secular names to give legitimate appearance to the allegedly communal protests.

The FIR against Khalid contains stringent charges including Sections 13, 16, 17, 18 of the UAPA, Sections 25 and 27 of the Arms Act and Section 3 and 4 of the Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act,1984. He is also charged of various offences mentioned under the Indian Penal Code, 1860.

In September 2020, main chargesheet was filed against Pinjara Tod members and JNU students Devangana Kalita and Natasha Narwal, Jamia Millia Islamia student Asif Iqbal Tanha and student activist Gulfisha Fatima.

Others who were charge-sheeted included former Congress Councilor Ishrat Jahan, Jamia Coordination Committee members Safoora Zargar, Meeran Haider and Shifa-Ur-Rehman, suspended AAP Councilor Tahir Hussain, activist Khalid Saifi, Shadab Ahmed, Tasleem Ahmed, Salim Malik, Mohd Salim Khan and Athar Khan.

Thereafter, a supplementary chargesheet was filed in November against former JNU student leader Umar Khalid and JNU student Sharjeel Imam in a case related to the alleged larger conspiracy in the communal violence in northeast Delhi in February.

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