A Delhi court on Tuesday modified the conditions of the bail granted to Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad in the Daryaganj violence case, and allowed him to enter the city for medical treatment and election purposes, PTI reported.
However, the court said that when he comes to Delhi, Azad would have to inform the deputy commissioner of the police’s crime division about his visit and schedule, and stay at the address mentioned in his application, Live Law reported.
Additional Sessions Judge Kamini Lau of Tis Hazari courts granted Azad’s request to modify the bail order after noting that the prosecution had failed to prove that his presence in the national capital would cause violence. “In democracy when election is the biggest celebration, which should have maximum participation, it is fair that he should be allowed to participate,” the judge added.
Azad had moved the court on January 17 to get the initial bail order modified. Lau had granted him bail on the condition that he stay out of the city for the next four weeks because of the upcoming Assembly elections. He was also told to check in with the station house officer in his hometown Saharanpur in Uttar Pradesh every Saturday for the next four weeks. Following that, he was told to mark his presence before the official every month till the filing of the chargesheet.
However, his advocates Mehmood Pracha and OP Bharti argued that Azad was not a criminal and claimed such conditions were wrong and undemocratic. They told the court that Azad was a social worker and the decision to keep him out of the city for four weeks, except for medical treatment, violates his fundamental rights.
Before leaving Delhi, Azad had said that his primary concern was to make people aware of the citizenship law and not to fight elections in Delhi. “My priority is to make people aware about the discriminatory citizenship law, mobilise people against it... It is time to strengthen this movement, politics can happen later,” he added.
The Bhim Army chief was arrested in the early hours of December 21 on charges of instigating violence during protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act in Old Delhi’s Daryaganj locality. The day before, Azad had addressed a large gathering at Jama Masjid in the afternoon. In the evening, a group of protestors attempted to march from the mosque to Jantar Mantar in Central Delhi. They were stopped at Delhi Gate by the police. However, the crowd refused to back down, and a car was set on fire outside Daryaganj police station. Policemen used water cannons and to disperse the protestors, and assaulted them with batons.