A sessions court in Mathura on Thursday reserved its order after arguments on bail applications filed by two members of Campus Front of India (CFI) and their driver, who were arrested, along with a journalist, on their way to Hathras to meet the family of a Dalit woman who was allegedly gangraped and murdered. The CFI is the students’ wing of the Popular Front of India.
The bail applications of Atiq-ur-Rahman (25), Masood Ahmed (26) and Alam (26) are pending. They are facing several charges, including Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), sedition, promoting enmity between different groups on ground of religion and deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings, said police.
“After hearing the arguments from both sides, Additional District and Sessions Judge Mayur Jain today reserved its order on bail applications of those three arrested persons. The court is likely to pronounce its order tomorrow,” said Shiv Ram Singh, government counsel, Mathura.
The bail applications of Rahman, Masood and Alam were moved to sessions court after their bail pleas were rejected in lower court of Mathura. “In the bail applications, we told court that no crime could be made out against these three youths. Also, so far, police have failed to collect any evidence against them. We also questioned the state government’s decision of ordering UP Police’s Special Task Force (STF) to investigate the case. We also told the court that there has been a violation of Section 6 of The National Investigation Agency Act, 2008. A case under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act should be investigated by NIA and till a decision is not taken by the government, the SHO of the police station concerned (where FIR has been lodged) should investigate the case,” said defence counsel Madhuban Dutt Dwivedi.
He added, “The bail application of journalist Siddique Kappan (41), who was arrested along with them, has not been moved to the local court of Mathura yet. Kappan’s habeas corpus is pending in the apex court and its next hearing is on November 16.”
All the four accused are presently lodged in the Mathura district jail. Following a court direction, they were recently sent to 48-hour police remand between November 4 and 6. The police remand was sought by STF on the ground that they wanted to question them regarding allegations of receiving foreign funds and planning riots in the state, said Dwivedi.
“We have challenged the jurisdiction of the CJM court, which allowed 48-hour police remand of the four youths. Revision has been admitted in court and its next date of hearing is on November 27,” said Chaturvedi.
Meanwhile, Muzaffarnagar police have booked Atiq-ur-Rahman in a case of violence that occurred during protests against the anti-Citizenship (Amendment) Act in Kotwali area of the district in December last year.
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