New Delhi: A Delhi court on Thursday transferred the bail applications of two accused arrested in connection with the death of a 19-year-old Arunachal Pradesh youth, to Special Court due to lack of jurisdiction to hear the cases registered under the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes Act.
Metropolitan Magistrate Pawan Kumar, who had on February 4 remanded Farman, Sunder Singh and Pawan to judicial custody till February 18, recused himself from taking up the pleas and said the applications be heard by the Special Court as the accused have been arrested under the law which deals with offences of atrocities against SC and ST members.
"The applications should be placed before the Special Court... Which has jurisdiction of such offences," the judge said, while listing the applications for tomorrow.
Besides being charged with murder, the trio, who are in judicial custody, have been booked under Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989.
The court was scheduled to hear the bail applications of Sunder and Pawan, who had pleaded they were innocent and were the eyewitness to the alleged incident, when Nido Taniam was beaten by some shopkeepers at Lajpat Nagar market in south Delhi.
However, the police in their reply sought by the court said that the two accused have been arrested in the case after adducing sufficient evidence for using caste derogatory and racist remarks against the deceased and witnesses.
Relatives of Taniam, a BA first year student in a private university, alleged he had an altercation with the shopkeepers on January 29 after they made fun of his hairstyle, following which they allegedly thrashed him. He was brought dead to AIIMS the next day.
The police in their reply had also said that they opposed the two applications as there are serious charges against the accused and "there is every apprehension that they will jump bail to evade the process of law".
The duo`s counsel S K Sharma, however, said that custody of the accused was illegal as the police till date do not know the cause of Taniam`s death.
"They have not been arrested for murder," Sharma said, while questioning the police that how the two can be charged under SC/ST Act as the victim should come under the definition of such Acts.
The counsel also said that the sections under which Sunder and Pawan have been arrested are bailable and they should be released immediately.
A senior police official also said the final post-mortem report from the medical board of doctors of AIIMS is awaited.