A Delhi court has sent former JNU student Umar Khalid, arrested under UAPA charges in a case related to the February Northeast Delhi riots, to judicial custody till October 22.
Khalid was produced before Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat through video conferencing after his 10-day police custody expired. Before being sent to Tihar Jail, Khalid asked ASJ Rawat if he could meet his parents, which was subsequently allowed following which they met him at the Special Cell office.
Khalid’s father, Iliyas SQR tweeted, “Umar’s mother, younger sister Sarah and I met him at Special Cell today for 40 minutes before his judicial custody. Umar was cheerful, healthy and comfortable. He conveyed his regards and greetings to all his well-wishers and supporters.”
Police had moved an application to send Khalid to 30 days judicial custody after they did not seek further custody.
Khalid’s lawyer Trideep Pais asked the court to pass an order to provide Khalid with security inside the jail since there was a threat that he may be attacked. Pais told the court that back in 2016, when Umar was arrested in the JNU sedition case, he was produced through video conferencing from the police station because the “situation was that scary for the accused”.
“Even in the jail there are televisions, people have seen the faces of these people… even within the jail, they can be attacked because they have opposing views on issues. They were put below high-security jail in a ward called Mother Teresa ward… they were not put in common cells,” said Pais.
ASJ Rawat directed the jail superintendent to “take all necessary steps, within the rules, to ensure the safety and security of accused Khalid in jail”. The court also allowed Khalid to carry his spectacles inside the jail.
After the arguments were completed, Khalid spoke directly to ASJ Rawat, telling him that during his 10-day police custody, he did not sign on any papers and that he wanted to meet his parents before going to Tihar. The court recorded these submissions in the order sheet.
Special Public Prosecutor Amit Prasad told the court that since Khalid had to be medically examined and other formalities had to be completed, his parents will have to make it in time to visit him. Following this submission, the court allowed Umar’s father to see him — who, at the time, had joined video conferencing while travelling in a car to meet his son — provided he reached on time.
According to police, an FIR was registered against Khalid on March 6 based on information provided by an informer to sub-inspector Arvind Kumar of the narcotics unit of the Crime Branch.
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