HC allows Kejriwal’s plea to provide witness statement in Secy assault case

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday allowed Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s plea seeking directions to a trial court to consider the statement of a witness at the time of passing the order on framing of charges in connection with the case related to the alleged assault on former Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash.

A single-judge bench of Justice Suresh Kumar Kait allowed the plea challenging a trial court order which had dismissed his plea to supply some crucial documents as required in the application under Section 207 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC).

Justice Kait set aside the trial court order dated on July 24, 2019, whereby the lower court did not allow to supply the crucial documents as prayed in the application under Section 207 of the CrPC, which deals with supply to the accused of copy of police report and other documents.

“Consequently, the trial court is directed to consider statement dated February 21, 2018, of VK Jain, which is part of the case diary and placed on record by the accused, at the time of passing the order on the charge,” the bench said in its order.

“In view of the above facts and law discussed, it is the prime duty of the Investigating Agency to do a free and fair investigation, thereafter, bring to the notice of the Court all the evidence collected without a pick and choose. The Investigating Agency has no power to appreciate the evidence, it rests with the court,” the order said.

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Senior advocate N Hariharan, appearing for Kejriwal, argued that the prosecution has withheld the statement of witness VK Jain recorded on February 21, 2018, because it did not suit the prosecution case and helped in falsely implicating the petitioners.

“This concealment was exposed by ASJ in its order when he perused the case diary of the case. Thus, the grievance of the petitioners is that copy of the statement ought to have been supplied to the petitioners but the same was not supplied,” the Hariharan said.

Kejriwal had moved an application through advocates Mohd Irshad and Badar Mahmood under Section 207 of the CrPC for the supply of certain deficient documents including the copy of the statement of one witness VK Jain recorded and audio/video recording of the examinations of the petitioners.

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The Delhi Police had earlier charge-sheeted Kejriwal, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, Amanatullah Khan, Prakash Jarwal, Nitin Tyagi, Rituraj Govind, Sanjeev Jha, Ajay Dutt, Rajesh Rishi, Rajesh Gupta, Madan Lal, Parveen Kumar and Dinesh Mohania under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for voluntarily causing hurt and obstructing a public servant to deter him/her from doing duty, wrongful confinement and assault.

They have also been accused of insulting with intent to provoke breach of peace, criminal intimidation, criminal conspiracy, the punishment of abetment and unlawful assembly.

Earlier, the Aam Aadmi Party had called the case a “midnight conspiracy to defame the Delhi Chief Minister, Deputy Chief Minister and 11 MLAs in a false and laughable case”.

The former Delhi Chief Secretary had alleged that he was beaten up by AAP MLAs in the presence of Kejriwal at the Chief Minister’s residence in 2018 where he had been called for a late-night meeting. The case was filed the next morning and Amanatullah Khan and Prakash Jarwal were arrested and sent to judicial custody. Later, they were released on bail.

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