Sunday, Nov 27, 2022

'How Many More Lives Have To Be Lost?': What High Court Said During Hearing On Delhi Riots

The high court directed the Delhi Police to take 'conscious decision' with respect to lodging of FIRs against hate speeches by three BJP leaders -- Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur and Parvesh Verma.

The High Court on Wednesday said it won't let another 1984 happen in the national capital under its watch while hearing a petition concerning communal riots in which at least 22 people, including a cop and an Intelligence Bureau (IB) employee, have been killed.

The high court also directed the Delhi Police to take "conscious decision" with respect to lodging of FIRs against hate speeches by three BJP leaders -- Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur and Parvesh Verma --  in connection with the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).

A bench of Justices S Muralidhar and Anup J Bhambhani took on record the assurance by special commissioner Praveer Ranjan that he will sit with the police commissioner today itself and view all video clips and take a conscious decision on lodging of FIRs.

Here are all the key highlights from the high court hearing:

On registration of FIRs: "Why are you not showing alacrity when it comes to registration of FIR in these cases? We want peace to prevail. We do not want the city to witness another 1984 riots. This city has seen enough violence and anguish. Let it not repeat 1984."

"This is the anguish of the constitutional court against the non-registration of FIR and we want you to tell this to commissioner of police. You should sit and make a conscious decision. Come back and tell us tomorrow."

On hate speeches by BJP leaders: "You (Delhi Police) have registered 11 FIRs in the last two days. Why are you showing laxity when it comes to registering an FIR against these three? What is the appropriate stage? After the city is burnt?"

The High Court asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and DCP (Crime) if they have seen the video clip of BJP leader Kapil Mishra making hate speech. After the police officer said no, Justice Muralidhar played the video in courtroom.

On police action: "How many more lives have to be lost? How many properties have to be destroyed?"

"While the order was being dictated mid-night, police was implementing it right there and rescuing injured persons."

"Really amazed at the state of affairs of the Delhi Police".

On providing assistance to victims: "It is extremely unfortunate what has happened. This is the time to show that Z security works for everybody. Otherwise, we cannot restore peace. Every victim should be visited by higher functionaries."

HC also asked Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS) director to provide sufficient qualified professionals to cater to riot victims suffering from post-trauma stress and appointed advocate Zubeda Begum as amicus curiae to coordinate between victims and various agencies.