The Delhi Police Special Cell has summoned Chandan Kumar, a student of Jamia Millia Islamia, in connection with riots that broke out in Northeast Delhi in February.
A senior officer of the Special Cell confirmed that they had summoned Kumar for questioning. In their notice under Section 43F – Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, the ACP (SIT) Dhram Singh Negi states, “In connection with the case – case FIR no 59/2020 – you are requested to join the investigation on May 13 at 2 pm. If you fail to appear, appropriate legal action will be taken against you. This may be treated as urgent.”
The Indian Express had reported on April 25 that Delhi Police are exploring action against several members of the Popular Front of India (PFI), the JCC, Pinjra Tod, All India Students’ Association (AISA) as well as former and current students of Delhi University and JNU under the UAPA Act.
Last month, UAPA was invoked against former JNU student Umar Khalid, Jamia student and RJD’s youth wing president Meeran Haider, JCC media coordinator Safoora Zargar, Danish, a resident of Northeast Delhi’s Bhajanpura, and Alumni Association of Jamia Millia Islamia (AAJMI) president Shifa-Ur-Rehman.
So far, six people have been arrested in connection with the riots since the lockdown was announced — including Zargar, Haider, former Congress councillor Ishrat Jahan, activist Khalid Saifi and Shifa.
AISA national president N Sai Balaji said, “Delhi Police, after adding charges of UAPA to the FIR, is targeting and witch-hunting students. Chandan raised concerns about Covid-19 and its spread in Delhi, lack of transportation, and one of the head constables of the special cell contracting Covid-19, but the Delhi Police paid no heed. He wrote to the police about his willingness to join the investigation through video conference or any other method that doesn’t put his health and life at risk during the pandemic, but they insisted on him coming in physically to the Special Cell headquarters, where a case of Covid-19 had been found.”
Balaji alleged that police had earlier assaulted Kumar in December. “Chandan was one of the students assaulted by Delhi Police in Jamia near the library on December 15. He has been falsely accused of burning buses at NFC and an FIR was registered against him… It was Delhi Police who was the aggressor and not Chandan,” he said.
The Delhi Police had tweeted on April 20: “While investigating Jamia and NE riot cases, Delhi Police has done its job sincerely and impartially. All arrests have been made based on scientific and forensic evidence.”
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