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Friday, November 27, 2020

Gulfisha gets bail in riots case, still in jail under UAPA

Gulfisha’s lawyer Mehmood Pracha had told the court that she “has been falsely and maliciously implicated in the present case without any evidence”.

Written by Anand Mohan J | New Delhi | Updated: November 22, 2020 3:02:39 am
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A Delhi court granted bail to student activist Gulfisha Fatima, arrested in a Northeast Delhi riots case, in connection with the death of an 18-year-old man.

Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat granted bail to Gulfisha on furnishing a personal bond in the sum of Rs 30,000 with one surety of the like amount. The court observed that there was nothing to suggest that witnesses were under threat or that she was a flight risk. However, she will remain at Tihar jail, where she is currently lodged as she is in judicial custody in a UAPA case, being investigated by the Special Cell.

Gulfisha has been in custody in this case since June 3. She is alleged to have participated in and instigated the unlawful assembly which then committed riots in which a man identified as Amaan died.

“There is nothing to suggest that the witnesses are under threat from the concerned applicant. In any case, two public witnesses are protected and their identity has been concealed. The rest are police personnel,” the court said.

When police argued that Gulfisha was also under investigation for the larger conspiracy in the UAPA case, the court said, “We will cross the bridge when we come to it. The present stage is of bail and not acquittal or conviction. Nothing is shown to suggest that the applicant is a flight risk.”

The court also considered the period of the custody of the applicant and the ground of parity as co­accused Devangana Kalita and Natasha Narwal were also granted bail by the court.

Police had also argued that a co­accused Tafsil has been declared a proclaimed offender. The court said, “The present applicant can’t be refused bail for the act and conduct of Tafsil, who will face consequences under the law.”

Gulfisha’s lawyer Mehmood Pracha had told the court that she “has been falsely and maliciously implicated in the present case without any evidence”.

“No role has been attributed to the applicant except vague and unsubstantiated allegations which have no nexus with the alleged crime,” Pracha argued.

Rajeev Krishan Sharma, special public prosecutor appearing on behalf of the state, told the court that Gulfisha was seen in video clips “controlling, instigating and provoking local rioters as well as managing non-resident rioters”. “They used code words with their group members to convey secret messages regarding further line of their protest/riot in front of common people. They also gave hate speeches at Jafrabad Metro Station and continuously stayed there till last,” Sharma told the court.


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