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'Serious doubt over credibility of police witnesses', says court granting bail to two

Serious doubt over credibility of police witnesses, says   court granting bail to two
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New delhi: A Delhi Court on Tuesday cast "serious doubt on the credibility of two police witnesses", while granting bail to two persons accused in a case of vandalism during the North-East Delhi riots last year.

Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Yadav also noted that the CCTV footage being presented by the police to defend its case happens to be from a day prior to when the actual incident occurred.

The case pertains to an incident of alleged rioting and vandalism reportedly involving two accused, Mohd. Shoaib and Shahrukh, where one Neetu Gautam claimed that her shop in Chaman Park was burnt by a "riotous mob" on February 25.

Observing that both the accused are neither named in the FIR nor are there any specific allegations against them, the court questioned as to why the two beat constables on duty that day did not approach the police on the actual date of the incident, i.e., on February 25, and rather waited till April 7 to file a complaint.

"Being police officials, what stopped them from reporting the matter then and there in the police or to bring the same in the knowledge of higher police officers. "This cast a serious on the credibility of aforesaid two police witnesses," ASJ Yadav stated in his order.

The court also said that on being specifically asked, the prosecution, represented by Special Public Prosecutor D K Jain, said that video footage pertains to February 24 whereas the incident took place on February 25.

"The applicants were not arrested from the spot, instead their arrest has been formally effected in the present case on April 15, after a lapse of about 55 days of the date of the incident in Mandoli Jail where the applicants were already lying lodged in another case in Gokalpuri Police Station wherein they made disclosure statement with regard to their involvement in the case in hand," the court order read.

Granting bail to both the accused, represented by Advocate Salim Malik, on a personal bond of Rs 20,000, the court observed that another accused, one Rashid, has been granted bail and the present case was on the same footing. ASJ Yadav also observed that the prosecution's contention that the accused persons are involved in several other cases "cannot be a ground to deny them bail in the instant matter".

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