Umar Khalid gets bail in Delhi riots case; asked to install Aarogya Setu app on phone
FIR against Umar Khalid was registered with respect to rioting which took place at or around the house of main accused Tahir Hussain on February 24, 2020
A Delhi Court on Thursday granted bail to Umar Khalid in a Delhi riots case arising out of an FIR registered at PS Khajuri Khas.
"The investigation in the matter is complete and chargesheet has already been filed. The trial in the matter is likely to take long time. The applicant has been in judicial custody in the matter since 01.10.2020. The applicant cannot be made to incarcerate in jail for infinity merely on account of the fact that other persons who were part of the riotous mob have to be identified and arrested in the matter," the court ruled.
Amongst other bail conditions, Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Yadav of the Karkardooma Court directed Umar Khalid to install the Aarogya Setu app on his phone upon his release.
The other bail conditions are that Khalid shall not tamper with evidence or influence any witness in any manner and shall maintain peace and harmony in the locality, as per a report by Bar & Bench.
Khalid has also been directed to appear before the court on each and every date of hearing and is also required to furnish his mobile number to SHO, PS Khajuri Khas upon his release from the jail.
Khalid was granted bail on his furnishing a personal bond in the sum of Rs 20,000 with one surety of the like amount.
The FIR against Khalid was registered with respect to the violence that broke out at the main Karawal Nagar Road, near Chand Bagh Pulia on February 24, 2020. The case concerns the rioting which took place at or around the house of main accused Tahir Hussain.
Besides seeking bail on grounds of parity with other co-accused, Khalid argued that he had been falsely implicated in the matter by the investigating agency on account of “political vendetta to muzzle the dissent”.
It was submitted that neither was he present at the scene of crime on the date of the incident nor was there material on record to show that there was any meeting took place between Tahir Hussain and him.
The offence of “criminal conspiracy” was already a subject matter of another FIR and therefore, Khalid could not be prosecuted for the same offence twice, it was submitted.
It was inter alia argued that the investigation in the matter was complete and no useful purpose would be served keeping him behind bars in the matter as the trial was likely to take a long time.
The prosecution, on the other hand, claimed that the “common object” of the accused persons was to cause maximum damage to the persons and property(ies) of other community. Since co-accused persons in the matter were very well known to Khalid, there was quick “meeting of minds” in the case, it was added.
Opposing the bail, the prosecution argued that investigation of the case was still in progresses many persons who were part of the “riotous mob” were yet to be identified and arrested.
The “conspiracy angle” behind such a large-scale riot needed to be unearthed, it was further contended.
The court noted that it was not the prosecution's case that Khalid was physically present at the scene.
Khalid had prima facie been roped in the matter on basis of his own disclosure statement and that of co-accused persons Tahir Hussain and Khalid Saifi.
The court said that it did not find any rationale in the act of police in involving Khalid in the FIR for the offence of conspiracy.
The court further recorded that there was no CCTV footage/viral video of Khalid from the crime spot and no independent witness or police witness had identified him.
It thus stated, "The applicant cannot be permitted to remain behind bars in this case on the basis of such a sketchy material against him. In my humble opinion, chargesheeting the applicant in this case on the basis of such an insignificant material is unwarranted."
The court ultimately opined that Umar Khalid deserved bail in the matter on the ground of parity with co-accused Khalid Saifi.