Updated: October 19, 2019 10:41:18 am
A Delhi court has sentenced Delhi Assembly Speaker Ram Niwas Goel, his son Sumit Goel and three others to six months in jail for allegedly trespassing into a realtor’s house and accusing him of stashing liquor ahead of the 2015 Assembly polls. The court observed: “Anarchist behaviour, which challenges the rule of law, must be dealt with strictly.”
Hearing his plea for leniency, Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Samar Vishal said Goel was 68 years old when the incident took place and asked how he can seek leniency citing his age. It also said that Goel entered the realtor’s house as a whistleblower and remarked, “I wonder whether whistleblowers have a right to raid and trespass into private houses”.
The ACMM convicted Goel, Sumit, Hitesh Khanna, Atul Gupta and Balbir Singh under IPC section 448, and sentenced them to six months in jail and a fine of Rs 1,000 each. Sumit was also found guilty under IPC section 323 and sentenced to one month in prison with a fine of Rs 1,000. Both sentences will run concurrently.
Goel told The Indian Express, “I will continue with my duties as an MLA; there is no restriction. On Monday, I am filing an appeal in a sessions court. I am a law abiding citizen and have nothing to fear.” The court has granted the accused persons bail of Rs 10,000 each so they can appeal to a sessions court.
As per court records, Goel and the other accused allegedly raided the complainant’s house in Vivek Vihar on February 6, 2015. Goel had accused the complainant of stashing liquor for distribution, damaged his property and raised slogans.
“The offence was not committed out of any compulsion, poverty or adventurism of youth. It was committed for political reasons, which is not a trivial matter,” said the court.
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