In the series of hearings regarding JNU scholar and activist Umar Khalid’s bail plea, the prosecution told the court on Monday that the “main conspirators” in the Northeast Delhi riots of 2020 were keen on inciting violence. He further argued that BJP leader Kapil Mishra was not involved in the riots.
Special Public Prosecutor (SPP) Amit Prasad made his arguments before Additional Sessions Judge (ASJ) Amitabh Rawat and dismissed the complicity of Mishra in the riots.
Prasad told the court, “There was a proposal to incite violence as on 17th February 2020 which is the time when you draw a narrative that Kapil Mishra came there…Where was Kapil Mishra then? He has not even surfaced anywhere and your proposal to incite violence has surfaced.”
It is worth reading the prosecutor’s statements in the light of media reports from 2020. Mishra had publicly spoke out in a rally against the anti-CAA protesters in 2020. It was reported at the time that Mishra vowed to “not remain peaceful” if the police did not remove the protesters.
The prosecutor representing the Delhi Police had earlier on Friday compared the alleged planning of the February 2020 riots to that of the 9/11 terror attacks in the US while opposing former JNU student Umar Khalid’s bail plea. He further drew the parallels while accusing Khalid of organising a conspiracy meeting and supervising the site of protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act.
He further told the court that the issue regarding the 2020 protests was not CAA or NRC but to embarrass the government and take such steps that it gets highlighted in international media.
“Issue was not CAA-NRC. The issue was you had to somehow embarrass the government. In the process of embarrassing the government, you take steps which will reflect in the international media,” SPP Prasad said.
Khalid and several others have been booked under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), a stringent anti-terror law, and are accused of being the “masterminds” of the riots which had left 53 people dead and over 700 injured.
The arguments on their bail pleas have been going on for more than five months.
(With PTI inputs)