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Mahabharata and Ramayana figure in Delhi riots case in court

Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat presided over the hearing when Special Public Prosecutor Amit Prasad relied on the Mahabharata to drive home the point that like the epic, the Delhi riots is also a story of a conspiracy whose “Dhritarashtra” was yet to be identified.

Written by Anand Mohan J | New Delhi | December 18, 2020 2:14:39 am
Man made to sing anthem: Plea seeks probe into deathThe petition claimed the investigation by the Crime Branch in the past nine months was a “sham”.

In a court hearing replete with arguments that referred to the Mahabharata and Ramayana, prosecution and defence lawyers Thursday argued the bail plea of Pinjra Tod member Natasha Narwal, who is facing trial in a UAPA case connected to the Northeast Delhi riots.

Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat presided over the hearing when Special Public Prosecutor Amit Prasad relied on the Mahabharata to drive home the point that like the epic, the Delhi riots is also a story of a conspiracy whose “Dhritarashtra” was yet to be identified.

Defence lawyer Adit Pujari shot back, telling the court that like the Ramayana, they cannot wait 14 years for justice to see if the accused can come out.

The defence said they were like Mahabharata character Abhimanyu, who will break the ‘Chakravyuh’ prepared by the prosecution.

This reference to the Hindu epics started when Pujari told the court that the UAPA chargesheet was “the second biggest document after the Mahabharata”.

Prasad rebutted this, saying the WhatsApp group — Delhi Protest Support Group (DPSG) — was like the mythological character of Sanjaya, who was narrating everything to the main conspirator in the Mahabharata, Dhritarashtra.

“The accused’s counsel said the chargesheet was the second biggest document after the Mahabharata. He had argued the Mahabharata was 22,000 pages and the chargesheet was 17,000 pages. I would like to point it out that Mahabharata was a story of a conspiracy and, incidentally, this case is also that of a conspiracy. In Mahabharata, Sanjaya was the one who was able to see everything. The Sanjaya of this conspiracy was DPSG. Sanjaya was narrating everything to Dhritarashtra. The Dhritarashtra here is yet to be identified. The accused further argued that protest is not crime. I agree but we have seen that clearly through and through the intent was not a protest, (but) a disruptive chakka jam and with clear indication that end result was violence,” Prasad told the court.

Pujari told the court, “Over the past eight-odd hearings, a ‘Chakravyuh’ has been prepared by the prosecution. It is going to be our attempt to be another mythological character, Abhimanyu, and break out of it. Let’s be very clear, the reason this is being done is that the chargesheet does not really contain a prima facie case. This is not going to be a Ramayana where we are going to wait 14 years to see if we can finally come out, like the Sikh riots. It is happening now and here, we are arguing this now.”

Pujari told the court that 53 people died in the riots but the chargesheet revolved around the deaths of only three persons — head constable Ratan Lal, Rahul Solanki and Intelligence Bureau official Ankit Sharma: “Are we living in a society where the life of a policemen, they are doing hard work no doubt, is more important than 48 other civilians…?”

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