High Court asks police to file status report on Safoora Zargar's bail plea

New Delhi: Going in for her fourth bail plea after being arrested under UAPA charges for her alleged involvement in the North-East Delhi riots, the Delhi High Court on Thursday directed the Delhi Police to file a status report in the case against anti-CAA activist and Jamia Coordination Committee member Safoora Zargar by June 22, when the matter will be heard again.

The four months pregnant student has been in custody since April 10, when she was arrested by Special Cell, Delhi Police . The police here alleged that she had incited riots by organising protests against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act, the constitutionality of which is yet to be determined by the Supreme Court of India.

Justice Rajiv Shakdher issued notice to the police and asked it to file a status report on the bail plea.

Zargar, M Phil student of Jamia Millia Islamia University, has challenged the June 4 order of the trial court denying her bail in the case. The trial court, in its order, had infamously held "when you choose to play with embers, you cannot blame the wind for having carried the spark a bit too far".

However, the trial court, in its order denying Zargar bail, had also specifically held that the only prima facie evidence that police had in the case against her so far was that she had organised a road blockade. The court then leaped to the conclusion that there is evidence to show that this had led to "instigation" of the riots that had killed over 50 people.

The court had said that even if there was no direct act of violence attributable to the accused (Zargar), she cannot shy away from her liability under the provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).

The trial court had also asked the concerned jail superintendent to provide adequate medical aid and the assistance to Zargar.

Significantly, the Delhi Police is yet to initiate an investigation into prominent BJP leader Kapil Mishra's role in inciting the riots. Mishra had threatened the anti-CAA protesters in Jafrabad and given an ultimatum to the Delhi Police, in front of a DCP-ranked officer. He said if the police would not act to remove the protesters, he and his supporters would take "matters into their own hands and no one should blame them". Hours after his speech, the riots started in North East Delhi.

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