Supreme Court agrees to hear Umar Khalid’s bail plea in 2020 Delhi riots case

by The Technical Blogs


The Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to hear the bail plea of former JNU student leader Umar Khalid, who has been lodged under anti-terror law, UAPA, over his alleged involvement in the conspiracy behind the northeast Delhi riots of February 2020. The top court has listed the matter for hearing after four weeks.

Umar Khalid was apprehended by the Delhi Police in September 2020 and faced a slew of charges, including criminal conspiracy, rioting, unlawful assembly, and several sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).

A bench of Justices Bela M Trivedi and Aniruddha Bose said the case would have to be heard at length and needs to be decided after going through the documentary evidence.

In response to the bench’s perspective, Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing Umar Khalid, argued, “Certain provisions of the UAPA, including those related to terrorism, fundraising for terrorist activities, and conspiracy, do not apply to this case. I can demonstrate to the court how specific sections that are part of the chargesheet do not correspond.”

In light of these arguments, the bench stated, “We will grant leave now and list the case for a hearing after four weeks. You have to present evidence to us demonstrating the disparity between the available evidence and the charges leveled against you.”

The bail plea is likely to be heard in October.

In October last year, Delhi High Court had refused to grant bail to Umar Khalid, stating that he was in constant touch with other co-accused and the allegations against him were prima facie true.

The high court had also said the actions of the accused prima facie qualified as “terrorist act” under the UAPA.

Several activists, including Umar Khalid, Sharjeel Imam, and several others have been booked under the UAPA and provisions of the Indian Penal Code for allegedly being the ‘masterminds’ of the February 2020 riots in the national capital, which left 53 people dead and over 700 injured.

The violence had erupted during the protests against Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) and the National Register of Citizens (NRC).

Published On:

Sep 12, 2023


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