The Delhi High Court granted bail to one Likayat Ali, who has been in custody since April 2020, for his alleged involvement with suspended Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Councillor Tahir Hussain in the North East Delhi riots of February, 2020.
Justice Suresh Kumar Kait reportedly said, “Petitioner is directed to be released on bail forthwith on his furnishing personal bond in the sum of Rs.25,000/- with one surety in the like amount to the satisfaction of the trial court concerned.”
The Single-judge Bench observed that there was no evidence on record to keep him behind bars. The court held, “Admittedly, no electronic evidence like CCTV footage or videography or photograph has been placed on record to establish petitioner’s presence at the spot at the time of alleged incident.”
Observing the quality of the witness statement in this present case, Justice Kait said that the petitioner Likayat was arrested based on one Pradeep Verma’s statement that he saw the petitioner pelting stones and actively participating in the riots with the mob. The court held, “It is an admitted fact that Pradeep Verma did not make any PCR call or complaint to any authority regarding petitioner’s involvement prior to March 28, 2020, i.e., the day when his first statement was recorded. Statements of Constable Saudan and Constable Pawan were recorded on June 6 and March 24 respectively. They had also not made any complaint or DD entry with regard to the incident in question even though they were posted in the area and witnessed the alleged incident.”
FIRs were registered against Likayat Ali based on his mobile records, which pointed at his presence in the riot spot and that he had instigated other rioters to attack people from other communities along with his son Riyasat Ali.
The High Court held that there was no purpose to detain him since a “Charge sheet in this case has already been filed and investigation is complete.” Accordingly, the court disposed of his bail plea and directed the petitioner to not directly or indirectly influence the witnesses or tamper with the evidence.
The order may be read here: