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Wednesday, July 15, 2020

School owner accused in Delhi riots granted bail by trial court, HC puts order on hold

Justice Suresh Kumar Kait passed the interim order on a plea filed by the Delhi Police against the trial court’s June 20 order, by which Faisal Farooq, owner of Rajdhani Public School, was granted bail.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: June 23, 2020 2:05:58 am
delhi riots, northeast delhi riots, school principal bail, delhi news, indian express Several schools were damaged in the riots. (Photo: Amit Mehra)

The Delhi High Court on Monday put on hold a trial court order granting bail to the owner of a school who was arrested in connection with the Northeast Delhi riots, ordering that if he is “still in custody, he shall not be released”.

Justice Suresh Kumar Kait passed the interim order on a plea filed by the Delhi Police against the trial court’s June 20 order, by which Faisal Farooq, owner of Rajdhani Public School, was granted bail.

Since Farooq was still in custody, he was not released.

Granting bail to Farooq, the trial court had observed that the police “chargesheet is bereft of material showing the links of applicant with PFI, Pinjra Tod group and Muslim clerics”.

The court also said, “It is prima facie not established that the applicant was present at the spot at the time of incident”.

The High Court hearing, which was conducted through the video conferencing, also witnessed strong opposition from Delhi government’s standing counsel (criminal) Rahul Mehra, over the petition filed by central government counsel on behalf of the Delhi Police.

Mehra submitted that the central government has no power to file the present petition against the order of the trial court’s Additional Sessions Judge (ASJ), passed on June 20.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta submitted that he received instruction from the central government to file the present petition and to appear before this court.

Later, the court was apprised that the issue raised in the present petition shall be resolved.

The court issued notice to Farooq and listed the matter for further hearing on June 23.

“Till further order, if the respondent/accused, pursuant to order dated June 20, is still in custody, he shall not be released. Copy of the order be communicated to concerned Judge and Jail Superintendent…,” the order reads.

Challenging the trial court order, Delhi Police had moved the HC through its counsel, contending that “while granting bail to respondent (Farooq), the ASJ incorrectly recorded that in none of the CCTV footages, the presence of respondent was there”.

“It is submitted that the ASJ failed to consider that the respondent/accused was clearly seen in CCTV footage near Rajdhani School on February 24 at about 01.43 pm, which evidence was part of the chargesheet,” the police said.

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