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Delhi riots: Case against Umar Khalid intentionally fabricated, argues lawyer

New Delhi, May 24, 2022- The case against student activist Umar Khalid, who was arrested and charged under the Unlawful Activities Activities (Prevention) Act in connection with the alleged larger conspiracy case behind the 2020 Delhi riots, is intentionally fabricated, his counsel told the Delhi High Court on Tuesday.

Senior advocate Tridip Pais, appearing for Khalid argued that the incarceration of his client for the past two years was solely based on the hearsay statement.

“It is all hearsay,” Pais said during the course of hearing before a division bench of Justices Siddharth Mridul and Rajnish Bhatnagar.

Questioning the statement of witnesses and Whatsapp chats procured by the police, he said that there were 751 FIRs related to violence and none of the complaints of actual violence is tied to Umar Khalid.

“However, I have to bear the brunt of two years of imprisonment because you have a statement,” he argued.

“Basically UAPA is now this, you just get a person to make a statement and that is it. That is the difficulty in which I have been arraigned in this matter,” he added.

Counsel further argued that it is a case where a statement is made in order to implicate. It doesn’t have any relation to violence in Delhi, Pais claimed, adding “that the entire preface of this matter is to frame people under UAPA solely by messages”.

Khalid had approached the High Court with his appeal challenging the trial court order which denied him bail in connection with the UAPA case.

His alleged offensive speeches delivered at Amaravati during the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Register of Citizens were the basis of allegations against him in the riots case.

JNU scholars and activists Khalid, and Sharjeel Imam are among the nearly a dozen people involved in the alleged larger conspiracy case linked with the Delhi riots 2020, as per the Delhi Police. The riots broke out in the national capital in February 2020 as clashes between the anti-CAA (Citizenship Amendment Act) and pro-CAA protesters took a violent turn, in which more than 50 people lost their lives and over 700 were injured.  (Agency)

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