A court in Delhi on Monday granted activist and former Jawaharlal Nehru University student leader Shehla Rashid interim protection from arrest in a sedition case, The Wire reported.
On August 18, Rashid had tweeted that Indian Army personnel had tortured four men in Shopian district of Jammu and Kashmir, placing a microphone next to them “so that the entire area could hear them scream, and be terrorised”. The allegation was made as part of a Twitter thread in which Rashid recounted what she had heard from people who had travelled out of Kashmir. The Army dismissed Rashid’s accusations as “baseless”.
Jammu and Kashmir has been in a lockdown since the Centre scrapped special status for the state under Article 370 of the Indian Constitution.
Patiala House Court Additional Sessions Judge Pawan Kumar Jain said on Monday: “I am of the view that the matter requires investigation in detail.” He said that the accused shall not be arrested till November 5, when the matter will be heard next.
Rashid’s counsel Satish Tamta told the court that a single advocate had made a complaint against her tweet, based on which the Delhi Police filed a first information report. The additional public prosecutor in the case submitted that the police has not issued any notice to the accused. Tamta, in turn, said that Rashid was ready to join the investigation.
The judge noted that the police had not yet received any complaint from the Indian Army. He said the police would take at least six weeks to investigate the case, and posted the matter for further hearing in November.
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