Red Fort incident: Delhi court extends by 7 days police custody of Deep Sidhu

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New Delhi, Feb 16 (PTI) A Delhi court on Tuesday extended by seven days the police custody of actor-activist Deep Sidhu in connection with the Red Fort violence on Republic Day during the farmers' tractor parade against the Centre's three new agri laws.

Sidhu was produced before Metropolitan Magistrate Bhujali after expiry of his police custody in the case.

Police sought extension of his custodial interrogation, saying it was required for further investigation and to identify other accused persons in the case.

The court had on February 9 sent Sidhu to police custody for seven days after the police alleged he was one of the main instigators of the violent incidents at the Red Fort.

The police had said there are videos where Sidhu can be allegedly seen at the site of the incident.

'He was instigating the crowd. He was also one of the main rioters. Several social media accounts need to be searched to identify the co-conspirators. Also his permanent address is given as Nagpur but several places need to be visited in Punjab and Haryana to unearth further details,' the police had alleged.

'He can be seen coming out with the person who hoisted the flag and congratulating him. He came out and gave speeches in loud hailers and provoked the crowd there. He was the main instigator. He instigated the crowd due to which violence occurred. Several policemen were injured in the violence,' the police alleged.

Sidhu's counsel, however, claimed he had nothing to do with the violence and was at the wrong place at the wrong time.

Sidhu has been arrested for several offences under the Indian Penal Code including rioting (147 and 148), unlawful assembly (149), attempt to murder (120-B), criminal conspiracy (120-B), assaulting or obstructing public servant (152), dacoity (395), culpable homicide (308) and disobedience to order promulgated by public servant (188).

He has also been arrested under sections of the Arms Act, Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act and the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act.

The police had announced a cash reward of Rs 1 lakh for information leading to Sidhu's arrest.

Tens of thousands of protesting farmers clashed with the police in the national capital on January 26 during a tractor parade to 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. In the FIR registered in connection with the Red Fort violence, police alleged two magazines with 20 live cartridges were snatched from two constables by protestors who also damaged vehicles and robbed anti-riot gear. PTI URD DV DV