Karnataka

Nalapad’s bail plea rejected

A file photo of Mohammed Nalapad Haris being taken for a medical check-up in Bengaluru.

A file photo of Mohammed Nalapad Haris being taken for a medical check-up in Bengaluru.   | Photo Credit: PTI

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Bail denied to six other accused also

The City Civil and Sessions Court on Friday refused to grant bail to Mohammed Nalapad Haris, former Youth Congress leader and son of N.A. Haris, MLA.

He has been accused of brutally beating up Vidvat L., son of a businessman, at a cafe in UB City mall on February 17. The court observed that he “is not entitled for bail at least till the completion of the investigation”. Bail was not granted to six others arrested in the case.

Timeline
  • Feb. 17: Mohammed Nalapad Haris, general secretary of Bengaluru city Youth Congress, and his friends allegedly punch and kick an injured patron, Vidvat L, at a restaurant in UB City mall at night
  • Feb. 18: Congress expels Nalapad, who was on the run, from the party
  • Feb. 19: He surrenders to the police amid protests by the BJP. He is remanded in police custody for two days. The Chief Minister and the Home Minister promise that justice will be served
  • Feb. 21: The Additional Metropolitan Magistrate Court remands him in judicial custody for 14 days. Nalapad is taken to the Bengaluru Central Prison. Defence lawyer applies for bail in the sessions court
  • Feb. 22: His father, N.A. Haris, MLA, tries to meet Vidvat at Mallya Hospital, but is not allowed
  • Feb. 23: Nalapad’s lawyer approaches the sessions court for bail, hearing adjourned
  • Feb. 27: The sessions court concludes hearing on bail plea; orders reserved for March 2
  • March 2: Nalapad and six others accused in the case denied bail

While pronouncing his judgement in a packed court hall, Judge Parameshwara Prasanna noted that the investigation into the case was yet to be completed, and that the police were yet to record the statement of Mr. Vidvat, who is in Mallya Hospital.

“By considering the nature of accusations against [the] petitioner, nature of evidence in support thereof, the nature of injuries sustained by the victim, pendency of further investigation, reasonable apprehension of witnesses being tampered with and the larger interest of the public and State, I am of the considered opinion that the petitioner is not entitled for bail at least till the completion of investigation,” the judge said.

Among the various sections of the Indian Penal Code, Mr. Nalapad and the other accused have been booked under Section 307 (attempt to murder), which is non-bailable offence, which is punishable with imprisonment for life.

There are prima facie ingredients of attempt to murder charge: Court

The City Civil and Sessions Court on Friday said “there are clearly prima facie ingredients of Section 307 (attempt to murder) of the Indian Penal Code” in the case registered against Mr. Nalapad.

“... the allegations in the FIR, further statement of the 1st informant, and statement of eyewitnesses regarding the manner in which the offences were committed, behaviour of accused during the incident, weapons/articles used for assault, nature of blows inflicted on victim, role played by the accused, the nature of injuries sustained by the victim, the act of accused in following the victim to the hospital and giving life threat to the victim even in the hospital clearly prima facie attracts ingredients of Section 307 of the IPC,” the court observed in its order refusing to grant bail to the accused.

The court made these observations in response to the arguments of Mr. Nalapad’s advocate that there was no allegation of attempt to murder in the complaint but inclusion of the said charge at a later stage was due to “political motivation and to tarnish the image of Mohammed’s father.”

The court also observed that “even though, in the complaint no specific overt act of assault is attributed to the petitioner [Mr. Nalapad], the specific overt act of assault on victim [Mr. Vidvat] by hand before assault by other assailants on his command has been attributed to the petitioner in the further statement of the complainant and in the statement of other witnesses.”

Referring to the counter-complaint lodged by one of the other accused against Mr. Vidvat, the court said the medical and the police records prima facie show that the counter-complaint was filed “to hamper the investigation in the case” registered against Mr. Nalapad.

Will approach HC: Defence advocate

S. Balan representing the six accused in the Vidvat assault case said on Friday he would approach the High Court of Karnataka seeking interim bail on Monday. “There are many loopholes in the case, and moreover the whole issue has been politicised,” he said. “I am going to challenge this in the High Court while moving an interim petition,” he said.

Tomy Sebastian, advocate for Mr. Nalapad, too, said the next option was to move the High Court on Monday. “There are many points which need to be reconsidered, which we will challenge in the High Court,” he said.

Sources in the Department of Prisons said Mr. Nalapad, who is lodged in Bengaluru Central Prison, was shocked and upset, and he walked back to his cell after watching the news of bail denial on television.

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Printable version | Jan 24, 2020 10:43:59 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/nalapads-bail-plea-rejected/article22913137.ece

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