Activist Umar Khalid was released from jail on a one-week interim bail on Friday morning to attend his sister’s wedding, his family told Scroll.in. Khalid reached home at 8.30 am and is not allowed to talk to the media, his father SQR Ilyas said.
On December 12, a Delhi court had granted interim bail to Khalid after he sought relief for two weeks. The court, however, allowed only a week-long bail from December 23 to December 30.
Khalid was arrested by the Delhi Police in September 2020. He has been booked under an Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act case pertaining to clashes that had broken out between February 23 and February 26, 2020, among supporters of the Citizenship Amendment Act and those opposing it in North East Delhi.
The violence had left 53 dead and hundreds injured. Most of those killed were Muslims.
The Delhi Police claim the violence was part of a larger conspiracy to defame Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government and was hatched by those who organised the protests, including Khalid, against the amended Citizenship Act.
They also claim the protestors had secessionist motives and were using “the facade of civil disobedience” to destabilise the government. The police had arrested several activists and students, including Khalid, based on these conspiracy charges.
On October 18, the Delhi High Court had denied regular bail to Khalid saying that the allegations against him were prima facie true and so Section 43D(5) of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act prevents granting him bail.
The High Court had said that demonstrations planned by Khalid and other activists against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and the National Register of Citizens were “not a typical protest” but were far more destructive.
On December 4, Khalid, along with another activist Khalid Saifi, were discharged in a separate case related to mob violence in Delhi’s Khajuri Khas area during the riots. They were granted bail in the case in April 2021.
Although Khalid and Saifi were not part of the mob, they were accused of criminal conspiracy in the case.