‘Delhi Riots’ did not take place in spur of a moment; were pre-planned: Delhi High Court

3rd October 2021 – While hearing bail application of accused Mohd. Ibahim in the tragic ‘Delhi Riots’ which shook the national capital of India in February 2020, the Delhi High Court Justice S. Prasad, on 27th September 2021, concluded that the riots were pre-meditated and did not take place in spur of a moment.

The riots that continued for 6 days started on 23rd February 2020 in the North-East parts of New Delhi where protests were happening against the Citizenship Amendment Act 2019 (CAA). The riots claimed many innocent lives and property, both public and private, worth millions was destroyed. Many policemen suffered life-threatening injuries. Head-Constable Ratan Lal succumbed to a bullet injury. He suffered 21 other life-threatening injuries as he was beaten by the mob.

The Delhi Police FIR stated that the protestors were carrying sticks, baseball sticks, iron rods and stones. Police also alleged that the protestors did not pay any heed to their multiple warnings and the crowd started pelting stones at the police.

In its chargesheet against Ibrahim, the Delhi Police submitted 3 CCTV footages where the offender was found on the scene of crime. He was scene with a sword in his hand and was wearing a skull cap, black Nehru jacket and salwar-kurta. Police later had recovered these clothes which the accused wore on the day of the crime. The accused is known to have 74 telephonic conversations between 25th January 2020 – 21st March 2020 with the main organizer and conspirator Suleman Siddiqui who is declared PO in the case.

While rejecting Ibrahim’s bail application, the court found that the riots which shook the National Capital evidently did not take place in a spur of the moment and the conduct of protestors portrays that it was a calculated attempt to dislocate the functioning of the government as well as to disrupt the normal life of the people. The judgement also noted that innumerable rioters ruthlessly descended with sticks, dandas, bats, etc. upon a hopelessly outnumbered cohort of police officials.

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