Anti-CAA protest: Made enough mess; Judge to prosecutor

New Delhi: A Delhi court on Wednesday while granting bail to Bhim Army chief Chandrashe-khar Azad, referred to Tuesday's hearing, the judge told the prosecutor, "Yesterday you have made enough mess.

We say a lot of things during the proceedings, those are not part of the record." The Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad has been accused of inciting people during an anti-CAA protest at Jama Masjid here on December 20.

While directing him not to hold any dharna in the national capital till the elections saying "the nation cannot be exposed to anarchy", the court also restrained Azad from visiting Delhi for four weeks.

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Additional Sessions Judge Kamini Lau granted the relief to Azad on furnishing a bail bond of Rs 25,000 with two sureties of like amount.

The court also said that before going to Saharanpur if Azad wants to go anywhere, including Jama Masjid in Delhi in 24 hours, police will escort him there.

"There is no material in the form of CCTV footage or audio recordings to prima facie show the direct involvement Made enough mess: Judge to prosecutor of the accused with the alleged violence and it was admitted by the police that the CCTV footage upon which they were placing their reliance was of a very poor quality which does not even reflect the presence of other accused who have already been granted bail," the judge said.

Special circumstances call for special conditions, the judge said. During the verdict pronouncement, the counsel for Azad, advocate Mehmood Pracha, said the Bhim Army chief faces threat in Uttar Pradesh.

"Whenever the accused is required to come to Delhi for his medical treatment, he shall inform his schedule to the DCP of the crime branch and the SHO of Fatehpur police station at Saharanpur, who shall convey the same to DCP Crime Branch, Delhi. During the period of his visit, the accused shall be under an escort," the court said.

It further clarified that the condition has been imposed till February 16.

"Violence or destruction of property was totally unacceptable and for any kind of damage to private or public property during the protest, it is the organisers who would be responsible for the damage and liable to compensate for the loss.

There has to be zero tolerance for any kind of violence and lawlessness cannot be encouraged. The nation cannot be exposed to anarchy.

"Of course, it goes without saying that protests do lead to inconvenience but it has to be ensured that these protests do not last for a long time at places under public use," the court said, in its order.

The court further said that while exercising one's right, another's should not be violated and no inconvenience should be caused to anyone.

"I may observe that in our democratic set-up, we have a fundamental right to peaceful protest guaranteed by the Constitution, which cannot be curtailed by the state.

However, at the same time, our constitution strikes a fine balance between the rights and duties. While exercising our right of peaceful protest, it is our duty to ensure that no corresponding right of another is violated and no inconvenience was caused to anyone," the judge said.