The magistrate court of Ahmedabad Rural on August 28 rejected a police application seeking addition of sections of unlawful assembly, armed rioting and criminal conspiracy to an FIR lodged last Monday.
The FIR lodged at the Anandnagar police station on August 26 alleged that three unknown persons had driven to a local city restaurant — Marutinandan — at Anandnagar at around 12:15 am and despite the restaurant staff informing them that it had closed for the day, the three insisted on being served food. When refused, a fight allegedly broke out when the three allegedly hit the complainant, Lala Joshi, on his head with a wooden stick and also verbally abused him.
The FIR that had stated only three persons as accused, had booked them under IPC sections 323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt), 294 (b) (utterance of obscene word) and 506 (2) (punishment for criminal intimidation). However, two days after the FIR was lodged, in the wee hours of August 28, the Anandnagar police arrested eight people, including the three mentioned in the FIR.
On Wednesday, the police filed an application before the magistrate, seeking police custody of the eight for five days, along with addition of IPC sections 143, 149 (unlawful assembly), 147 (rioting), 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon) and 120(B) (conspiracy) along with the Gujarat Police Act section 135 (1) to the original FIR. The same day, the magistrate rejected this application.
Advocate Kishan Chakwawala, representing the accused, submitted in court that the police’s application for more sections involving serious offences, was a bid to harass the accused. The court adjudged that prima facie no case was made out for registering an offence under IPC section 307 (attempt to murder). The magistrate also noted that no sufficient records were there to conclude offences of rioting had taken place.
Chakwawala said, “The entire report of adding serious sections such as 307, 143, 147, 148, 149 and 120 (b), being rejected, is a very rare and exceptional occurrence.”
Also rejecting the police’s request for remand, the court noted, “In present case, the complainant in his FIR stated that there were three accused… the police officer got sufficient time to get information (from the accused persons)… further the accused (have shown) willingness to support the investigation… The present application for remand is rejected in furtherance of the order passed under the application to add sections.”
A bail application was also filed by the eight arrested that was granted by the magistrate on Thursday.