The Delhi Police Tuesday submitted before the High Court that arrested activist Devangana Kalita and her group, Pinjra Tod, have started a “media trial” in her favour to gain public sympathy and influence and generate public opinion in her favour.
Police also stated in court that “the clamour of the accused petitioner of being innocent is just a ruse, and there is more than prima facie case against the petitioner which is sufficient in law to maintain the charges against her”.
“Petitioner (Kalita) herself is guilty of peddling a false social media narrative of state-sponsored oppression and subjugation against a particular community which incited the Delhi riots, and after the riots, she is guilty of peddling a false narrative of a political vendetta, state-sponsored pogrom, persecution and malicious prosecution against the said community,” police stated in their counter affidavit.
As per the petition in court, Kalita is accused in four FIRs, including one for allegedly participating in protests in Darya Ganj on December 20 last year and two for her alleged role in the anti-CAA Jafrabad sit-in protest in February.
Police said it was not placing details of the probe conducted so far in the four FIRs, in which “active and pivotal role of accused-petitioner has emerged”.
Delhi Police filed its counter affidavit through advocates Amit Mahajan and Rajat Nair, explaining the reason for sharing a “brief note” to the media on June 2.
“In the given circumstances, the impugned press note was only an attempt on part of the respondent (Delhi Police) to put things in the right perspective…The said note was…in discharge ofthe constitutional obligation of respondent to satisfy the right of the citizen to know about the affairs of the society, and the right of the journalist to ensure an informed society,” the affidavit stated.
They were responding to Kalita’s plea seeking directions to police to not leak any allegations about her to the media. She has also sought directions to police to “forthwith withdraw all allegations” contained in the June 2 “brief note”.
The court on June 10 had already restrained police from “issuing any statements or circulating information regarding allegations and evidence allegedly collected” against Kalita.
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