The Delhi High Court said it is the constitutional duty of the Court to ensure that there is no arbitrary deprivation of personal liberty in the face of excess of state power while granting bail to six persons in a murder case in connection with the violence in northeast Delhi in February 2020.
The bench of Justice Subramonium Prasad on Tuesday granted bail to Mohammad Tahir, Shahrukh, Mohammad Faizal, Mohammad Shoaib, Rashid and Parvez in connection with the murder case of a man in Gokulpuri, whose body was found in mutilated condition in a sweet shop during the violence.
Justice Prasad in the order copy also said that bail is the rule and jail is the exception, and Courts must exercise their jurisdiction to uphold the tenets of personal liberty, subject to rightful regulation of the same by validly enacted legislation.
The court further stated that the Petitioner herein has been in custody for 22 months and was formally added by way of the charge sheet dated June 4, 2020. A perusal of the material on record has revealed to the Court that the sole evidence that is available at this juncture against the Petitioner is his presence in the CCTV footage, the statement of Himanshu, and the CDR which places the Petitioner at the scene of the crime. However, the authenticity of all of these materials is to be tested during the course of trial and cannot form the basis for the prolonged incarceration of the Petitioner.
The court while deciding the bail petitions also noted that the charge sheet and the supplementary charge sheet have already been filed. The charge sheet indicated that there are currently 72 witnesses who need to be examined and, therefore, trial in the matter is likely to take a long time.
The court is of the opinion that it would not be prudent to keep the Petitioner behind bars for an undefined period of time at this stage. The Petitioner has roots in society, and, therefore, there is no danger of him absconding and fleeing, said order
According to the Delhi Police, the accused were booked in a case relating to vandalism, setting fire to a sweet shop which caused the death of a 22-year-old man, who died due to burn injuries. The victim has been identified as Dilbar Negi (22), whose body was allegedly burnt by a mob of rioters after cutting off his hands and feet.
At least 53 people died while around 200 people sustained serious injuries in the violence that raged for three days in northeast Delhi.
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