Delhi

Pinjra Tod member plea: Show some restraint, Delhi High Court tells police

The Delhi High Court on Thursday said the Delhi police have to show “some restraint” in regard to the affidavit filed by it in response to a plea by a Pinjra Tod group woman member, who was arrested in connection with the north-east Delhi riots.

Justice Vibhu Bakhru said the allegations in the affidavit were unwarranted in view of the limited scope of the petition, which was to to examine under what circumstances the police can issue official communiques or press notes about a case and in what manner.

The court said the allegations made in the police’s affidavit go beyond the scope of the petition and suggested that it be withdrawn.

“We cannot allow this kind of affidavit on record unless someone takes responsibility,” the court said adding that some of the allegations made in the affidavit were made irresponsibly.

“Response to allegations of witch hunt”

Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Aman Lekhi, appearing for the police, said the statements in the affidavit were made in response to the allegations made by Devangana Kalitha that there has been a witch hunt against her. Mr. Lekhi said the police will file another affidavit clarifying it.

The police affidavit has said Ms. Kalitha had started a “media campaign/trial in her favour to gain public sympathy”.

In the affidavit, the police admitted that it had issued a brief note on June 2 with regard to her case as it became necessary and compelling for the investigating agency to inform the public at large that the narrative peddled by “Pinjra Tod” and its affiliate groups was “per se false and fabricated”.

The police had said Ms. Kalita was attempting to malign and impede the investigation against her by peddling a false narrative of political vendetta, State-sponsored pogrom and persecution.

Court clarifies on official communiques

During the hearing, the High Court also clarified that it was not going to prohibit police from issuing any official communiques in any case.

The court has listed the case for further hearing on July 15. It was hearing Ms. Kalita’s petition seeking direction to the Delhi police to not leak any allegations pertaining to her to the media pending investigation.

Ms. Kalita is facing four different FIRs connected with the anti-CAA protest in Jafrabad, north-east Delhi riots and violence in Daryaganj during a protest against the new citizenship law last year.

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Printable version | Aug 9, 2020 9:05:52 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/pinjra-tod-member-plea-show-some-restraint-delhi-high-court-tells-police/article32031503.ece

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