A Delhi court on Monday warned a police officer of action against him for lack of preparation during a hearing in a case related to the violence in the Capital in February last year, Live Law reported.
The Delhi Police official, who was the investigating officer in the case, had been late in arranging videos and photos related to the case that the prosecution wanted to produce as evidence. The officer was also late in joining the online proceedings of the matter.
“You did not even join the proceedings on time,” Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat said. “It’s not the duty of the court...It’s your responsibility. Last time also I asked you, you said you will take time. You should be prepared with everything...Such a conduct is not expect of an investigating officer. Don’t push me to write an order.”
In recent months, several Delhi courts have rebuked the police for their handling of cases related to the February 2020 violence.
At least 53 people had died and hundreds were injured in clashes that had broken out between supporters of the Citizenship Amendment Act and those opposing it between February 23 and February 26, 2020, in North East Delhi. The majority of the victims were Muslim.
Last month, Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Arun Kumar Garg had asked Delhi Police commissioner to conduct an inquiry and deduct Rs 5,000 from the salary of an officer who failed to appear before him and sought an adjournment in a case.
On September 17, Garg had pulled up police for their “lackadaisical approach” in handling cases related to the communal violence.
On September 3, Additional Sessions Judge Vinod Yadav said the police had failed to conduct a fair investigation in riots cases and to ensure that the victims get justice.
In at least three cases, courts have pointed to irregularities in the manner in which first information reports were filed.
On Monday, the sessions court was hearing a bail plea filed by a person Mohd Faizan, whom the prosecution alleged, could be seen in a CCTV camera footage carrying a stick during the violence, Live Law reported. Public Prosecutor Rajeev Krishan Sharma also alleged that Faizan was among rioters who threw stones at policemen.
He has been charged under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including those related to attempt to murder, criminal conspiracy and assault to public servants.
Meanwhile, Faizan’s lawyer Advocate Ashu Kumar Sharma submitted that the main conspirators in the case, as alleged by the prosecution, student activists Natasha Narwal and Davangana Kalita have been granted bail in the matter by the Delhi High Court.