Delhi court discharges AAP MLA Amanatullah Khan
A Delhi court on Wednesday discharged AAP MLA Amanatullah Khan in a case of alleged rioting and stone pelting on police personnel in May 2022 while opposing a demolition drive being carried out by the South Delhi Municipal Corporation.
Special Judge Vikas Dhull passed the directions on an appeal filed by Khan against a magisterial court’s order.
The metropolitan magisterial court had directed framing of charges against Khan and others under sections 147 (rioting), 153 (provocation with intent to cause riot), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of his public functions), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty) and 332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter a public servant). The sessions court on Wednesday said the magisterial court’s order suffered from “grave illegality” and was not sustainable in the eyes of law.
The judge said that the magisterial court had placed heavy reliance upon the statement of witnesses, even though video recording was not supporting the allegations made by the witnesses, to come to a prima facie view that charge is required to be framed against the revisionist and other accused persons.
The judge said there were two views possible, one of which, based upon the statement of witnesses, raises a suspicion only that revisionist and other accused persons had committed the offence alleged by the witnesses. However, the other view, which was made out from the video recording did not raise a grave suspicion that revisionist and other accused persons had committed the offence alleged by the witnesses in their respective statements, the judge noted.
“It is a settled principle of law that if two views are possible and one view raises a suspicion only, then accused needs to be discharged. In the light of above discussion, the impugned order suffers from grave illegality and is not sustainable in the eyes of law,” the judge said while discharging Khan. The metropolitan magistrate had on January 20 ordered framing of charges against Khan and others.
According to police, Khan, who was the area MLA, along with his supporters, had formed unlawful assembly and pelted stones on Delhi police personnel, besides damaging public property while opposing a demolition drive being carried out by the South Delhi Municipal Corporation in Kalindi Kunj area on May 12, 2022.
Reasonable force had to be used at the spot to curtail the crowd, police said, adding that several police officials got injured in the stone pelting.