Prosecution questions Umar Khalid’s secularism while opposing bail plea

The first convict in the case -- Dinesh Yadav of Bhagirathi Vihar in Gokulpuri in Delhi was arrested on June 8, 2020.

New Delhi: The prosecution opposing former Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) student Umar Khalid’s bail plea in the northeast Delhi riots case on Monday questioned his public perception as an atheist and secular, seeking to know if that is the case, “then why he joined a particular community’s group at JNU”.

Special Public Prosecutor Amit Prasad said: “Why did he join a Muslim group at JNU? You portray yourself as something else for public knowledge,” he said.

Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat of Karkardooma court was hearing the arguments of prosecution on the bail application of Khalid.

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Further, Prasad argued that the 25 protest sites were close to local mosques but were purposefully given ‘secular names’, by pointing out Shreeram colony protest site which is Noorani Masjid protest. Sadar Bazar protest site is originally Shahi Idgaah. The Shastri Park protest site was Wahid Jama Masjid. Gandhi Park protest site was actually Jamila Masjid.

He also argued that the organisers of the protest sites wanted to create ground work for 24×7 sit-in protests.

He also claimed that there were hidden elements including PFI, Jamat-e-Hind and Student Islamic Organisation of India during the protests.

Arguments will continue in the next hearing on January 28 as it did not conclude on Monday.

In the previous hearing of Khalid’s bail application on January 11, responding to the submissions of his counsel’s bail plea, SPP said, “it is very unfortunate that the plea was referred by web series including ‘Family Man’ and movie ‘Trial of Chicago 7’, and did not make arguments on the basis of law”.

He told the Court, that on 17 points of Khalid’s counsel, the first argument was that he wants his plea to be decided by making reference to the web series.

He was referring to a case in which, it was alleged that on February 25, 2020, a mob of rioters, numbering around 150 to 200, attacked a 73-year-old Muslim woman’s house when her family was not present at the house and looted all the domestic articles.

The first convict in the case — Dinesh Yadav of Bhagirathi Vihar in Gokulpuri in Delhi was arrested on June 8, 2020.

Khalid has been booked for offences under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in connection with the northeast Delhi riots that broke out in 2020.

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