Protest by AAP: Delhi Police asked to further investigate

Last Updated: Saturday, March 30, 2013 - 17:45

New Delhi: A Delhi court on Saturday asked the city police to "further investigate" the three cases lodged against Arvind Kejriwal and other members of his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) for alleged rioting and unlawful assembly during their protests here last year on coal block allocation issue.

Metropolitan Magistrate Jay Thareja asked the cops to submit the video footage of the incident and place relevant documents on whose basis section 144 of the CrPC was imposed within two month after the accused had filed a plea for discharge saying imposition of prohibitory order was illegal and abuse of process by police.

"You will further investigate. Try to submit the video footage and also take third party video footage, if any, from the media," the magistrate said.

The court directed the police to collect and place before it the documents on the basis of which the Assistant Commissioner of Police had imposed prohibitory orders.

It gave a direction to police to complete further investigation within two months and listed the matter for hearing on June 26.

The issue whether imposition of section 144 of the CrPC was legal had cropped up after the accused had filed an application for discharge saying it was illegal, "clear abuse of process by police" and it was "designed to harass them".

Advocate Prashant Bhushan, AAP member and an accused in the case, Kejriwal, Manish Sisodia and 23 other accused had sought discharge in the case relating to charges of rioting, unlawful assembly, use of force to obstruct public servants from discharging their duty and damaging public property filed against them after protests on August 26, 2012.

The court had reserved its order after hearing the arguments in which Delhi police had said they had fulfilled all requirements for imposing prohibitory order in front of the Prime Minister`s residence and other places here last year at the time when the AAP members staged the protest.

During the arguments, police had faced a tough time with the court asking it to explain why section 144 of the CrPC was imposed in the New Delhi area.

The police had told the court that section 144 was imposed in some parts of the New Delhi district but the prohibitory orders were based on security inputs.

All the 26 accused were earlier released by the court after they appeared before it following summons issued against them in connection with three separate rioting cases.

According to the charge sheet, on August 26 last year, the accused had violated Section 144 of the CrPC and staged a protest outside the residence of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress president Sonia Gandhi against the coal block allocation scam.

Police had alleged that the accused damaged public property during the protest and some of their senior officers were injured.

Police had registered three FIRs against them under various sections of the IPC which deal with charges of rioting, unlawful assembly and use of force to obstruct public servants from discharging their duty as well as section 3 of the Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act.

PTI



First Published: Saturday, March 30, 2013 - 17:45

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