The Delhi High Court on Monday adjourned the hearing on bail plea of Jamia Coordination Committee media coordinator Safoora Zargar, who was arrested in connection with the north-east Delhi riots case, for Tuesday.
Justice Rajiv Shakdher adjourned the hearing after Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and Additional Solicitor General Aman Lekhi sought to defer the hearing by a day to take instruction on the issue.
Advocate Nitya Ramakrishnan objected to the request highlighting the delicate state of health of Ms. Zargar, who is 23 weeks pregnant.
During the hearing, Delhi government’s standing counsel Rahul Mehra raised objection to Solicitor General and Additional Solicitor General appearing for the Delhi police in the case.
Mr. Mehra stated that Delhi Police had taken requisite permission from the Delhi government to represent them by the team led by the Solicitor General and ASG in another north-east Delhi riots case. However, in Ms. Zargar’s case no such permission was taken.
Mr. Mehra said that the appointment of public prosecutors has to be done on the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers and that the Lieutenant Governor cannot unilaterally appoint them. He additionally said that Delhi Police’s status report in the case was not routed through his office.
Objects to bail plea
Delhi Police, in the status report, has objected to the grant of bail to Ms. Zargar stating that she was “part of the conspiratorial design not only to cause disaffection but also the use of any means to cause death and injury to person and death and loss to persons”.
“Their main target was to uproot the Government of India through violent means by instigating riots and unrest throughout the country,” the status report said. One of the “grave and compelling reasons” cited by the Delhi police to keep her in custody was that Ms Zargar is “one of the main conspirators as well as instigators behind the riots”.
“She played an active role in this whole conspiracy and is one of the masterminds,” the Delhi police said, adding that the statements of the witnesses and other co-accused clearly implicates Ms. Zargar as being a leading co-conspirator in commissioning of the serious offence of causing large-scale disruption and riots, not only in the area of national capital territory of New Delhi but also in other parts of the country.
On the ground of pregnancy as a reason to seek bail, Delhi Police said there was “no exception carved out for pregnant inmates, who is accused of such heinous crime, to be released on bail merely because of their pregnancy”.
It also said that 39 deliveries have taken place in Delhi prisons in the last 10 years and the jail authorities are providing Ms. Zargar proper medical care.