Delhi

Olympic wrestler Sushil Kumar seeks bail in Chhatrasal Stadium murder case

Olympic medalist Sushil Kumar. File.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Olympic medallist wrestler Sushil Kumar on Monday moved a Delhi court seeking bail in the Chhatrasal Stadium murder case.

In his bail application filed by advocate Pradeep Rana, the wrestler stated that he has been falsely implicated and incarcerated in jail since June 2. Additional Sessions Judge Shivaji Anand will hear the bail application on Tuesday.

Advocate Nitin Vasishth, appearing for the victim and complainant Sonu, said that Kumar should not be released on bail as more accused are yet to be arrested and they, along with Kumar, may influence the witnesses The international wrestler who is jail since June 2, 2021, sought relief from the court by asserting that he has been falsely implicated in the alleged murder case and the accusations are levelled with the aim and object of humiliating him and injuring his reputation.

Mr. Kumar, along with others had allegedly assaulted former junior national wrestling champion Sagar Dhankar and his friends at the stadium in May over an alleged property dispute. Dhankar later succumbed to the injuries.

Vested interest

Mr. Kumar’s lawyer stated that the “demise of a budding wrestler has been sensationalised and the same is being exploited against the present applicant by parties with vested interest”.

The application further said that “the police left no stone unturned” to present a “false and guilty image” of Mr. Kumar and fed false information to the media to wrongfully establish a connection between him and renowned gangsters.

“They [police] had even gone to the point of painting a grotesque image of the accused where he was said to be a gangster himself and even questions were raised against his antecedents,” the application stated.

The application alleged that the investigating agency, “to build a false case”, has withheld the statements of witnesses. It also said that the video footage, the police have relied on, has been taken on a phone whose “ownership is a big mystery”.

However, after filing the charge sheet, all the claims and leaks made by the investigating agency are untrue and without any footing in the reality, the plea filed through Mr. Rana said. To buttress his contentions, he stated that the FIR was filed after a delay, and statements of witnesses were marred by improvements and contractions, and were deliberately withheld by the investigating agency to build a "false case".

“The investigating agency at the fag end of the investigation cropped up a new version that the deceased had given a dying declaration to the police officials with an aim to add bite to the otherwise toothless case of the prosecution,” Mr. Kumar submitted. He also called the FIR a conjoint mix of "assumption, presumption, and malafide intentions", adding that the police arrested him in the absence of concrete evidence.

The wrestler further said that he is no more required for any custodial interrogation, much less for any recovery or discovery of incriminating material as the charge sheet has been filed which shows that the probe against him is over. Mr. Kumar said that nothing incriminating has been recovered from him which further corroborates his innocence but the investigating agency in order to build a case against him has attributed certain vehicles and weapons to him. The wrestler further told the court that he has clean antecedents and has never violated any law.

“The accused has received various laurels representing India and has made the nation proud by winning medals at numerous International tournaments and championships,” the plea stated and listed out all the medals he has won over the years. The Olympic wrestler submitted that he is confident to prove his innocence before any court of law and any detention at this stage would only be pre-trial incarceration without any fault on his part being innocent.

Mr. Kumar, along with 12 other accused, has been named in the charge sheet filed by the Delhi Police in August.

The Delhi Police had filed an FIR against the accused of offences such as murder, attempt to murder, culpable homicide, criminal conspiracy, kidnapping, robbery, rioting, among others.

(With inputs from PTI)


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Printable version | Nov 27, 2021 8:31:05 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/olympic-wrestler-sushil-kumar-seeks-bail-in-chhatrasal-stadium-murder-case/article36822589.ece

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