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Monday, April 22, 2024

Delhi police tell apex court that the state govt prosecutor is hiding relevant info in Delhi riots case

Delhi police submitted in the apex court on Wednesday that the city government prosecutor had been purposely withholding relevant information pertaining to the anti-Hindu Delhi riots that took place in February last year which led to one of the accused being granted bail in the case. In their submission, the police have also mentioned that the prosecutor has been a repeat offender and in other cases too he had failed to intimate the special prosecutor or police officials.

The plea was made by the police before a bench led by Justice Ashok Bhushan. Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Vikramjeet Banerjee made the submission on behalf of the Delhi police. He alleged that although the additional public prosecutor of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) led-city government was in the know that a special counsel had been appointed by the central government in relation to the Delhi riots case, he didn’t inform the investigating agencies regarding the same when accused Iliyas’ bail petition came up for hearing in the high court.

The ASG challenged the bail order issued on 25 August last year and raised the question about the additional public prosecutor making incorrect statements. The ASG said:

It is a completely strange situation where the additional public prosecutor does not communicate it to the police officials attached with the high court and instead he makes a wrong statement that he had informed a deputy commissioner of police about it. My lords are well aware about the situations in Delhi. Here, the special prosecutor is not even informed and the high court also gives bail to the accused without issuing a notice to the special prosecutor.

The Delhi police petition accused the public prosecutor of having withheld information from the investigating agency, appearing in the matter without authorization, and making statements that led to the bail order favoring the accused. The Delhi police also submitted before the bench that this was not an isolated case and the public prosecutor had not been informing special prosecutor or police officials in other cases as well.

The ASG stated that the two police officers had no prior information about Iliyas’ bail hearing and they have filed affidavits in this regard stating that they were not informed about the hearing. Iliyas has been charged with attempted murder, rioting, and arson in the FIR lodged at Dayal Pur police station. The ASG also pointed out that the high court had overlooked the numerous incriminating pieces of pieces of evidence against Iliyas as well as did not take the charge-sheet filed against him into account.

The bench while dismissing the special leave petition advised the ASG to persuade the high court to review its order. The bench observed that the correct course of action to be adopted by the Delhi police would be to approach the high court.

The bench said:

We have a limited scope here. We cannot entertain your petition here. You should persuade the high court to review its order. It shall also be open for you to seek cancellation of the bail. We do not find any ground to entertain this special leave petition. The special leave petition is dismissed. We, however, observe that it shall be open for the prosecution to make an application for cancellation of bail, if appropriate grounds are made out.

The bench comprising of Justices R Subhash Reddy and MR Shah and led by Justice Ashok Bhushan passed the order in the matter.

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