Class IX student was coming out of home when he was overpowered by men in plain clothes

Angry relatives and supporters of senior journalist Syed Mohammad Kazmi, who was arrested in connection with the February Israeli Embassy car blast, staged a demonstration on Kalindi Kunj Road in South-East Delhi on Tuesday accusing the Special Cell of attempting to arrest his nephew.

According to Mr. Kazmi’s son Shauzab, his 16-year-old cousin was coming out of his house when over half-a-dozen men in plain clothes tried to overpower him around 8 p.m.

“He raised an alarm and offered resistance. Hearing his screams, the neighbours rushed to his rescue and gheraoed those trying to forcibly take him away. They claimed that they were with the Mumbai ATS [Anti-Terrorism Squad]. However, some identity cards found in their person revealed they were from the Special Cell,” Mr. Shauzab alleged.

As news of the police team allegedly trying to arrest the Class IX student spread, more area residents gathered at the spot. The angry locals did not allow the men in plainclothes to leave and personnel from the area police stations were summoned soon thereafter.

“The local police took them away, but are yet to initiate action against them,” said Mr. Shauzab, alleging that Special Cell officers were involved in the incident.

“We have been receiving threats to withdraw our Supreme Court petition. It seems they have now started targeting our relatives,” he alleged.

For their part, the police said the men in plainclothes were from Anti Auto-Theft Squad (AATS) of South-East Delhi.

“We received information about some commotion in Jamia Nagar, following which senior police officers also reached the spot,” said a Delhi Police spokesperson. According to the police, an AATS team was in the area to conduct an enquiry when the incident took place.

The protest continued till late at night, with area residents demanding registration of a case against those allegedly attempting to arrest Mr. Kazmi’s nephew.

“Some of us are at the Jamia Nagar police station to ensure that a case is registered against them,” said Mr. Shauzab.

Four days ago, the Supreme Court had issued a notice to the Centre, the Delhi Government and the Attorney-General for their response to a petition filed by Mr. Kazmi challenging his detention and seeking bail.

Mr. Kazmi, who was arrested under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act on March 6, termed illegal a magisterial order that extended his detention by 90 days with retrospective effect.

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