Delhi court takes cognizance of sedition against Umar Khalid, 17 others in UAPA case

Security personnel stand guard near a neighbourhood vandalised by rioters during clashes between those against and those supporting the Citizenship (Amendment) Act in north east Delhi, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2020. | PTI
A neighbourhood vandalised in northeast Delhi during the riots | Photo: PTI file

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New Delhi: A Delhi court Tuesday took cognisance of the offence of sedition against 18 persons, arrested under the stringent anti-terror law Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in a north east Delhi riots case, after the requisite sanctions were filed by the concerned authorities.

Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat took cognisance of the offences under sections 124 A (sedition), 153-A (promoting enmity on the grounds of religion, language, caste etc), 109 (abetment) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC after the requisite sanction was filed in a second supplementary charge sheet against all the accused.

The court had earlier deferred the issue of taking cognisance for the offences against Pinjra Tod members and JNU students Devangana Kalita and Natasha Narwal, Jamia Millia Islamia students Asif Iqbal Tanha, Gulfisha Khatoon, former Congress Councillor Ishrat Jahan, Jamia Coordination Committee members Safoora Zargar and Meeran Haider.

Shafa-Ur-Rehman, suspended AAP Councillor Tahir Hussain, activist Khalid Saifi, Shadab Ahmed, Tasleem Ahmed, Salim Malik, Mohd Salim Khan, Athar Khan, JNU student Sharjeel Imam, former JNU student leader Umar Khalid and Faizan have also been charge sheeted in the case.

The court had earlier taken cognisance of the offences under sections 13 (unlawful activities), 16 (terrorist act), 17 (raising funds for terrorist act), 18 (conspiracy) of the UAPA and various sections of the IPC including, 147 and 148 (rioting), 149 (unlawful assembly), 186 (instructing public servant), 201 (disappearance of evidence).

The accused have been charge sheeted for allegedly being part of a premeditated conspiracy in the riots.

The maximum punishment for the offence of sedition is life sentence.

The court said the supplementary charge sheet should be supplied to all the accused persons in pendrive and put up the matter for further hearing on March 12.

Communal violence had broken out in northeast Delhi on February 24 after clashes between citizenship law supporters and protesters spiralled out of control leaving at least 53 people dead and around 200 injured.

Also read: Delhi court cites ‘Crime and Punishment’ to drop murder charges against two in riots case


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