New Delhi, March 4
A Delhi court Thursday granted bail to a farmer and a retired Army officer in a case related to the violence on Republic Day during farmers’ tractor parade against the Centre’s three new agriculture laws.
Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat granted the relief to Baljeet Singh and Harjinder Singh on furnishing a bail bond of Rs 15,000 with one surety of like amount in the case of the violence in Seemapuri area.
Baljeet is a farmer by profession and lives in Haridwar, Uttarakhand, and Harjinder is a retired Army Officer from 9 Sikh Light Infantry Battalion of the Indian Army and served for 17 years.
According to the police, Baljeet and Harjinder were detained on January 26 at Chintamani Chowk, since at around 12.50 pm, around 500 protesters on tractors and cars were coming from Apsara Border flyover and they had allegedly broken the barricade in a violent manner.
Police further alleged that people driving tractors had tried to run over the police personnel deployed there.
While granting bail to both, the court said even as per the prosecution both the accused were not driving the tractor nor did they attempt to kill or hurt any police personnel themselves.
“However, even as per the prosecution, the present applicant (Harjinder) was not driving the tractor nor did he attempt to kill or hurt any police personnel himself. The best case of the prosecution is that he had participated in the said rally/unlawful assembly on January 26, 2021, at the relevant time thereby attracting imputation under section 149 (unlawful assembly) IPC.
“The accused is in custody since January 26, 2021, and no purpose will be served by keeping him in custody any further. There is no previous record of the accused nor there are any allegations of tampering with evidence,” the court said in its similar order passed in both the cases.
While granting bail to Harjinder, the court further noted apart from clean antecedents that the accused has, he has also served the country and is a retired Army Officer.
Harjinder’s counsel said he had also served in the Gender and Peacekeeping Operations abroad.
It directed both the accused to not contact or try to influence the witnesses in the case.
During the hearing, advocates Tejpartap Singh and Jaspreet Singh Rai, appearing for both the accused, claimed they have been falsely implicated in the case and were not driving any tractor in the farmers’ parade nor did they break any police barricades.
Additional Public Prosecutor Vikas Kumar, appearing for the police, opposed the bail pleas on the ground that the offences against the accused were serious in nature.
Tens of thousands of protesting farmers clashed with the police in the national capital on January 26 during a tractor parade to highlight their demands.
Many of them driving tractors reached the Red Fort and entered the monument, where a religious flag was also hoisted. Over 500 police personnel were injured and one protestor died. — PTI
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