New Delhi: Predominant lawyers including Mehmood Pracha and Colin Gonsalves expressed their views against the invocation of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) in Delhi riots probe.
Recently, two Jamia Millia Islamia students, Safoora Zargar and Meeran Haider were arrested under UAPA in a case pertaining to the communal riots in northeast Delhi in February.
Can Anti-CAA protesters be charged under UAPA?
Replying to a basis question, “Can Anti-CAA protesters be charged under UAPA?”. Pracha said, “Absolutely not, there is no provision”.
Supporting his claim, he said that even if a layman reads Section 15 of the UAPA, it will be clear that the act cannot be attracted on such type of cases.
Senior Advocate of Supreme Court, Colin Gonsalves also said that UAPA cannot be invoked in such cases as the law is used against someone who is engaged in some kind of a terrorist offence.
He added, “CAA protestors are not even engaging in fiery speech. They’re simply saying that CAA and NRC is illegal, it should be scrapped”.
Making tough statement, Pracha said, “I think UAPA should be invoked against the Delhi Police and its master at the Home Ministry”.
Hard to get bail under UAPA
Giving the explanation on why is it hard to get bail under UAPA, Abhinav Sekhri, Lawyer practicing in Delhi said that it casts the burden upon the accused to show that there is a reasonable basis to think that he is innocent of the allegations. The accused had to wait till the charge sheet get filed, he added.
Pracha claimed that the cases against the anti-CAA protesters are politically motivated. “If there is good special judge before whom this case comes then he will throw it out in one second”, he added.
Advocate Gonsalves questioned, “How can a person who is pregnant be put in jail. How can a person whose only crime is that he is shouting slogans against the state be put in prison”. “You need judges to have guts”, he added.